World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

by Mark Stephens
Best Packaging Designs that Speak for their Brand

Talk of efficient branding, and you just can’t disregard the importance of product packaging. It is not just a wrapper or a container ensuring the safety of its contents. It’s a strong marketing tool that allows a brand to communicate and resonate with the targeted audience. Some of the most famous brands like KFC, Amazon, H&M, and McDonald’s (to name a few) can be instantly recognized by simply looking at their packaging and would be easily identifiable even if the name and logo were removed. Such is the power of their packaging designs!

Some of their carrier bags and boxes have also become part of people’s lifestyle and social status. So, what makes them so prestigious and iconic? Below, let’s dive in and take a look at some of the world’s most celebrated packaging designs and what makes them so impressive. 

8 Signature Packaging Designs that Deserve an Ovation

The Tiffany & Co. Blue Box

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

Who hasn’t seen the iconic Tiffany blue box with a bow? One of the most recognizable packaging in the world, the box has been an inspiration for party cakes, table centerpieces, and wedding decorations. Probably as famed as the brand’s diamonds, the blue box has represented the company since it was introduced in the mid-1800s. In many ways, The Tiffany & Co.’s signature blue packaging has become more synonymous to the company than what they offer.

Some of the key features of the packaging design are its unique color and typography. The iconic robin egg blue shade was purposely chosen based on the contemporary fashion and lifestyle trends. Turquoise jewelry was very popular in the 19th century and brooches bearing turquoise color stones were gifted to wedding guests as a memento. In 1886, when the brand introduced its signature diamond engagement ring nestled inside a blue box, it became as popular as the ring itself. This shade is now called Tiffany Blue and trademarked as Pantone No. 1837 – the brand’s foundation year. 

Chanel No. 5 Bottle

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

Pure, serene, and as basic as a laboratory vial, the Chanel No. 5 bottle features black sans serif text on a white label, and stamped with a matriculation number. Designed by Mademoiselle Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, this packaging is modern at its finest. It became so popular that it’s hard to say if the content or its packaging enchanted Paris more when the perfume was launched in the 1920s. Years later, both the perfume and the bottle are still looked up to by many. The company also recently launched a see-through, plexiglass clutch modeled after the iconic bottle. The price, however, is quite high and available only on request. 

While some say that the packaging design was inspired by a toiletry bottle used by her lover, Boy Capel, others are of the view that the design was based on a whiskey bottle. There are some who also say that the inspiration was drawn from glass pharmaceutical vials. No matter what inspired the Chanel No. 5 bottle design, Coco was definitely looking for something basic, or even clinical, to distinguish her product from the overstated designs typically seen on the contemporary perfume bottles.

Willie’s Cacao Truffles

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

Willie’s Cacao is an award-winning brand, which has launched a premium range of truffles with flavored liquid centers in matcha, raspberry, and roasted green tea. These dreamy truffle delights come in a bold and luxuriously designed packaging that strengthens the brand’s visual identity. The unique, mystical illustrations on the outer boxes depict seductive characters that spell magic and allure consumers to buy these products. The impressive logo on this food packaging design only adds to the brand’s value and prestige, while also making their products stand out from the crowd.

Gucci’s Sustainable Packaging

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

What comes to your mind when someone mentions “Gucci”? Some of the common things are the trademark double G logo, luxury, Italy, expensive items, and celebrities sporting Gucci bags and belts on social appearances. In a nutshell, we all know what Gucci signifies, regardless of whether or not we are their customers. Recently, the fashion house has started a “Culture of Purpose”, where their key objectives are to take a sustainable approach and protect the planet from destruction, all while maintaining their unique brand identity.

They’ve launched a new packaging that’s 100% recyclable, plastic-free, and uses water-based inks. This new line of sustainable packaging uses the signature double G logo with debossed finishes all over the boxes, bags, magnetic boxes, and tissue paper. They also introduced a new font to type the brand name. One of the most classic examples of Gucci’s sustainable packaging is the rectangular box that can be folded into 3 different sizes and adapted to the most appropriate size for a product. They also created new triangular boxes that can be placed into each other to form squares. This reduces any wastage of space in conveyance trucks. Thus, more products can be shipped in one go and carbon footprint will be reduced.

Loving Earth Chocolates

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

Made from high-quality, organic elements, Loving Earth chocolates are one of the most celebrated chocolate brands in the world. The raw cocoa that’s used in its production is derived from the Ashaninka community of the Peruvian Amazon in Peru – the place where cocoa originated. Their unique packaging design makes use of bold natural colors that depict the organic features of the products and their first-class quality. While the packaging’s big bold lettering emphasizes the flavor of the product, the cocoa row bean at the center represents the brand’s organic nature– an important feature that boosts the company’s market value and identity. 

Marlboro Bright Leaf Packaging

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

Prior to 2009, Philip Morris International (PMI) did not have a regular brand in the UK market. In August 2009, PMI launched a new brand, ‘Marlboro Bright Leaf’, specifically created to fit into the mid-priced consumer segment competing with other contemporaries like JTI’s Benson and Hedges, and Imperial Tobacco’s Lambert & Butler (the two best selling cigarette brands in the UK at one point of time).

From launch until January 2013, the Marlboro Bright Leaf packaging featured a charcoal grey color, imprinted with curved thin black patterns. The name ‘Marlboro’ on the front of the packaging was raised but the ‘Bright Leaf’ was flat and even, differentiating its feel from the rest of the packet. Perhaps the most striking feature of the packaging was its opening mechanism, which was similar to that of a zippo lighter. The packet opens at one side, revealing an orangey-red colored space with the tagline “Style meets flavor, Marlboro Bright Leaf, designed to be different”. The foil within is perforated and comes off easily in one piece.

Heinz Ketchup Bottle

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

Heinz’ octagonal ketchup bottle was a revolution in an age of regular ketchup packaging. Its curved neck was purposely designed to facilitate smooth flow of the ketchup, as stated in a 2011 book by branding expert Marcel Verhaaf. Unlike bottles with wider mouths that exposed the condiment to air and changed its color, the narrow mouth kept the ketchup safe and fresh for healthy consumption. 

Heinz launched their ketchup in 1876 in a keystone-shaped glass bottle, and a decade later developed the iconic octagonal glass bottle that’s still remembered by many. Although many restaurants and eateries continue to use the latter model, Heinz withdrew them from grocery stores years ago and introduced the convenient squeezable plastic packaging. In 2011, Heinz sold a limited-edition glass bottle to grocery stores. The brand is extremely possessive about its octagonal bottle design, and even went to the extent of suing a Texas condiment maker for designing a ketchup bottle similar to that of the iconic Heinz design. The case was resolved a month later only when the Texas brand agreed to change its product packaging design.

Laduree Macaron Boxes

World’s Most Iconic Product Packages Every Packaging Designer Should See

The high-end fashion brand Lanvin, along with its creative director Alber Elbaz, teamed up with the famous Paris-based quality cakes and pastries brand Ladurée to design a fresh box of macaroons. The new packaging design features sketches of women with various expressions and stylized with a red grosgrain ribbon. Even though it doesn’t have the typical Laduree look, it’s still identifiable due to its uniformity with the traditional brand feel and value. The box contains eight macaroons in different colors and a bubblegum flavor.

The new creations of Alber Elbaz not only uphold women and their influence, but also prove that beauty and sweetness can go hand in hand. According to Lanvin, the luxury fashion house, “They say that a delectable air of childhood surrounds those with a soft spot for sweets; this playful aura still follows Mr Elbaz, despite his role as a prominent couturier today.”

What’s so exciting about Apple, Nike, Versache or Louis Vuitton products? Is it just the quality of their products? It’s their strong branding strategy, which includes presenting their products in a unique and compelling way. In this blog, we’ve already discussed some of the most iconic packaging designs in the world, which have a huge impact on their consumer experience. Whether you’re a budding packaging designer or simply need some inspiration for your upcoming packaging design projects, you can take inspiration from these iconic designs. Hope they prove helpful!

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