Feature: Kleenex Breaks Into The Paper Towel Category with Clean Packaging Designed by Elmwood

NewsApr 03, 2023
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This article originally appeared on Dieline. Everyone already knows Kleenex for its facial tissues, but the brand recently broke into the kitchen towel category in Western Europe. The popular household brand turned to design agency Elmwood to help cut through the category’s clutter to create a packaging system that visualized the thrill of a clean […]

This article originally appeared on Dieline.

Everyone already knows Kleenex for its facial tissues, but the brand recently broke into the kitchen towel category in Western Europe. The popular household brand turned to design agency Elmwood to help cut through the category’s clutter to create a packaging system that visualized the thrill of a clean space – because it is thrilling.

Of course, it’s more than just spic-and-span porn. The visual identity and packaging allow the product’s benefits to be communicated along with the sweeping motion of cleaning. The Kleenex-blue wipe rushes from pack to pack, creating a harmonious, cohesive system with a bold pop of color.

Most paper towel brands’ packaging systems are overwhelmed with extraneous elements. Instead of following many of the tired cues from the category, Elmwood’s packaging system for Kleenex harnesses bold simplicity. The rich minimalism showcased from product to product allows the Kleenex brand to have an immediate shelf presence and break away from the facial tissue category in a fresh way.

The three products – Flexi-Clean, Max-Clean, and Ultra-Clean – all follow the same general packaging format. Each showcases the Kleenex logo at the top of the pack, descriptive imagery below, and copy highlighting the product’s benefits. Yet, the imagery alters from pack to pack, quickly visualizing the paper towels’ perks. Max-clean, for example, showcases a fist grasping the towel, whereas flex-clean highlights the half-sheets. In addition, each product features a different secondary shade – Flexi-Clean is green, Max-Clean is yellow, and Ultra-Clean is blue.

When brands extend into new categories, gaining consumer trust and knowledge can be difficult. Yet, Elmwood’s packaging system for Kleenex makes the extension seamless, especially through the power of leaning into bold simplicity and playful visuals.

Now, if they can make their brand name just as synonymous with paper towels as they did with tissues, they might be onto something.