IYA Studio Creates Sustainable Luxury Packaging For Beauty Brand Handle
by Rudy Sanchez on 03/25/2021 | 3 Minute Read
The beauty industry relies heavily on plastic, producing packaging, accessories, applicators, and other related items out of the material. Billions of plastic packaging units get generated by the industry every year, and most of it's intended for single-use and is often unrecyclable. Personal care and beauty brands and their consumers are well-aware of this, with established Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) firms such as Unilever taking a variety of steps towards reducing or eliminating plastic from packaging.
But it isn’t just the big players looking to minimize the reliance on plastic in the beauty and personal care industry. Startup Handle is attempting to circle the plastic square by collecting beauty packaging from partner locations, salons, and consumers, then either returning the packaging back to the manufacturer or using it to create durable plastic products such as mirrors, razor handles, and brushes. The design highlights the recomposed nature of the recycled products and celebrates the goal of a circular economy in a chic and stylish way that befits the beauty market.
“The briefing was based around the concept of Handle and how they focus on using waste from the beauty industry as the starting point for their products," said Matt Cottis, creative director, IYA Studio.
IYA worked with Handle on the branding and visual identity, including the rollout on the packaging, print, and digital. Inspired by the look created by the compressed materials, IYA uses those fluid forms to inform the visual look of Handle. The blend of sans and serif types is also done in the same spirit of repurposing and combining different materials to create something new and even unexpected.
Handle’s target was in the luxury spectrum of the beauty market. Yes, the brand has a strong sustainability story, but it also needed to meet the expectations of the premium beauty consumer. Much like the mix of reclaimed plastic, Handle’s identity blends thoughtful design with an ecological mission in an attractive presentation.
“The brand and packaging had to feel high-end but also with a core focus on sustainability. The products are getting sold in retailers such as Selfridges and Browns, so it will sit next to lots of premium brands,” Cottis said.
IYA also just happened to be the ideal partner, as the studio is no stranger to product design, having launched a line of home goods, iyouall, using that experience to open a branding studio. Driven by a passion for different kinds of design, IYA also has that first-hand insight of launching a brand that manifests itself in its work.
“We've found [launching iyouall] to be invaluable in understanding the challenges faced when launching a brand and products,” Matt said. “Seeing this from the client’s point of view has helped us to see every aspect of a project from both sides, which enables us to give some real-world advice from the challenges we've faced along the way.”
In the end, IYA and Handle made for a great partnership, and the visual identity and branding for the sustainable beauty care products celebrates these raw materials and their reusability, albeit in a beautiful, luxe way.