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How Do You Evolve The Typical Branding For Hand Sanitizer? Take A Look At Cleanli.

by Fred Hart on 02/24/2021 | 4 Minute Read

By this point in the pandemic, hand sanitizer is possibly one of the most maddening essentials. Dispensed in goopy textures with long-lasting residues, along with “moisturizing" formulations that strip, dry, and preserve your hands like beef jerky, these clinical fragrances remind you of the healthcare settings you mostly want to avoid. 

Enough already. 

With great fervor and first-hand frustration, the team at Interact coupled our strategic branding experience for food and beverage products with our desire to break into the beauty space as an opportunity to rebuild the world of sanitizer.

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In a pre-COVID world, consumers likely had one small—and probably expired—bottle of Purell living in the bottom of a travel bag. Once COVID-19 hit, new sanitizing products produced by alcohol manufacturers were utilitarian in nature. Before, they didn't cater to an experience beyond protecting your snot-nosed children from other snot-nosed children at the playground and really, really gross bars. Now, they were something we genuinely needed and fast. Hence, why so many breweries and distilleries started pumping out the stuff with near reckless abandon, and who cares about package design when you can't find it at your local market?

However, once the foreseeable future was accepted as the new normal, we set out to create a brand that our friends and family wanted to use, elevating Cleanli to be so much more than the average hand sanitizer. 

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From the beginning, we felt that what was missing from the category was humanity—care, self-love, and the desire for better skin. In a year where self-care became increasingly important, we questioned why people were still torturing themselves with products that burn instead of soothing the senses. Without other options, did clinical become a cue for a hand sanitizer's strength? Pandemic essentials treating self-love and effectiveness as mutually exclusive have the opportunity to prioritize both form and function. 

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Utilizing social listening, consumer insights, and consumer need-states, we created Cleanli to give people back the hands they deserve. Born from the radical notion that hands have skin, too, Cleanli brings self-care and all-natural skincare to hand hygiene. This cleansing brand transforms hand sanitizer into an elevated essential, believing it can do much more than kill germs.

Designed to have a prime place in your daily skincare routine, the hand sanitizer uses all-natural ingredients, organic ethyl alcohol, aromatic and antioxidant-packed essential oils from fruit and herbs, Vitamin E, and moisturizing glycerin to sanitize and nourish hands with a quick spritz. We even made up some edgy postcards that say, "don't piss off your skincare routine," a playful nod to consumers who are thoughtful about the products they use on their faces and want to do the same for their hands. 

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We wanted an experience that didn’t involve resentfully rubbing your hands together until they were raw enough to start a fire. Sanitizing technique makes a big difference, and thick solutions only work when the user ensures the product is fully absorbed and dry. Instead of bogging down with unfavorable textures and room for human error, a single mist of Cleanli covers more surface area and dries instantly, meaning the sanitizing is effective immediately. 

The goal is to evoke the senses beyond just touch and using aromatherapy as a beneficial component to well-being. Through multiple iterations, we thoughtfully crafted the formula with energizing citrus aromas from yuzu and calming rosemary. The idea was to encourage folks to take a few moments for themselves with each misting application. 

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The identity and packaging design is inspired by the ephemeral and soothing nature of the product, invisibly cleaning hands, rejuvenating skin, and vanishing in seconds. Using sustainable frosted glass bottles and a holographic label, Cleanli looks modern and futuristic, beautifully capturing the light from every angle. In addition to installing touchless, standing hand sanitizer mist dispensers with Cleanli branding, Alfred's locations in Los Angeles sell personal-sized bottles, giving their customers the chance to discover the product in an organic fashion. 

For people now accustomed to gel hand sanitizer dispensers with drying formulations everywhere they go, a moisturizing and calming mist of Cleanli is a welcomed perk.

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