In the second half of 2013, Unilever engaged the services of Echo Brand Design, a UK-based firm, to redesign the packaging for their Degree Women MotionSense product. For the last several decades, stick deodorant, which is the most commonly used format, according to Mintel’s US Deodorants and Antiperspirants 2014 report, has come in straight-side packages. Echo Brand Design completely redesigned the packaging for Degree Women MotionSense by giving the package a sleeker package with a form that is more feminine and ergonomic, making it easier to grip and apply.


Perhaps more importantly, this new packaging also offers greater premium connotations and helps the product to stand out on store shelves. Though the focus was initially for Degree Women MotionSense products, Unilever has applied the new packaging format to Dove products as well.

Mintel finds that the antiperspirant and deodorant (APDO) market is highly competitive, with two companies accounting for the majority of MULO sales. Proctor & Gamble and Unilever encompass nearly equal amounts of market share and together account for 75% of sales within the MULO APDO market in the 52-week period ending in November 2013.

However, during this 52 week period, Unilever experienced an overall sales decline of 2%, due to strong competition from P&G’s portfolio of brands. Several of Unilever’s women’s product lines, such as Suave and Dove, struggled during the review period. Degree Women product lines performed well, but were unable to stave off overall declines for Unilever. Faced with strong competition from P&G and other smaller players, Unilever set out to differentiate itself from the competition and hope by focusing on the packaging redesign of its women’s APDO brands, they can do just that.

For more information on the US Deodorants and Antiperspirants 2014 report, click here.

Gabriela Elani brings a strong background in marketing strategy, innovation, and consumer research to Mintel, where she leverages her knowledge across the home and personal care series of reports, as well as related household, consumer packaged goods, and beauty reports.