Many e-cigarette users, especially younger ones, view e-cigs as a lifestyle accessory. Some brand owners are therefore using packaging design (both graphic and structural) to position their e-cig brands as stylish, chic or elegant.
Vintage E-Liquids’ One Flick dispenser, for example, is designed with the look and feel of a refillable pocket lighter from the “Mad Men” era. The Vintage e-liquid dispensers also are decorated with intriguing graphics—and the packaging is now child-resistant.
The One Flick combines a rigid outer case with a plastic insert that holds e-liquid. To open the package, the consumer pushes the back of the hinged lid forward to bypass a latch, while at the same time lifting the front of the lid. An instructional label on the back of each case shows how to open the child-resistant package, which launched in early 2016.
The latch on the left creates a child-resistant feature by holding the lid in place and preventing access to the e-liquid.
Flipping open the case’s lid reveals the dispenser tip of the insert. For controlled dispensing of e-liquid drops, the consumer presses on the insert through a circular opening in the front of the case. The package comes in two sizes: 15 ml and 35 ml. Graphics are identical for both sizes.
Vintage’s e-liquid collection comprises six flavors, with names like The Lover, The Sinner and The Seeker. The packages are decorated with evocative illustrations keyed to the flavor names.
Nedal Makarem, principal, Vintage Vapours llc, reveals how the child-resistant package was developed.
How clever to make slight changes to your original container to make it child resistant. What more can you tell me about the development of this?
Makarem: As you mentioned, maintaining the "look" and the branding of our original bottle was essential when it came time to embark on the C-R bottle. The C-R feature took more than a year to design, manufacture mold(s) and modify based on feedback and C-R testing.
Based on our research, there was no other C-R flip top package on the market. Therefore, creating the first of its kind was quite the process. There were many iterations and several scrapped molds to get the product C-R certified, and we finally released it in February of this year. The original packaging had been launched in September 2014. We currently manufacture our own bottles using 3rd party injection and blow molding facilities in Riverside County, CA.
Why use a two-ply label on the side?
Makarem: In regards to the label, we wanted to include as much information as possible to comply with both current and upcoming State, Federal and International regulations. Since we had a limited amount of real estate on the bottle, the two-ply/catalogue label route was chosen. This label also helps to seal the bottle and serves as somewhat of a "tamper resistant" feature. The label is typically peeled off in its entirety to open the bottle, which is why we have the perforation at the bottom. Once the label is removed, you can still see what nicotine level of the bottle.
The embossed “V” underneath the back label is beautiful. I know you want to give customers opening instructions for the new C-R feature on the package. But how long do you anticipate having a back label? Is this required?
Makarem: Since we created a C-R mechanism that hasn't been seen before, we felt that it was necessary to provide opening instructions not to make it "adult resistant." Although it is not required, we will be keeping the back label for the foreseeable future, as every new customer is seeing this new mechanism for the first time. Once the market is familiar with this mechanism, we can then look to phase it out.
Is the C-R feature on the larger 35ml size the same as on the smaller 15ml size?
Makarem: In regards to the 35ml bottle, it is also C-R and uses the same C-R feature/mechanism as the 15ml bottle. This was released in March of this year.
Both the original bottle, as well as the C-R bottle, have Pending Design and Utility Patent applications in the U.S., and have already been issued several patents internationally.