Derrick Lin


Design: Flipflop Design
Project Type: Produced, Commercial Work
Client: Revlon Realistic
Location: Brighton, UK
Packaging Contents: Hair Care
Packaging Substrate / Materials: Plastic Bottles & Jars
Printing Process: Flexography, Foil Stamping

Revlon Realistic isn’t just another haircare brand, so we knew this wasn’t just another brief. Their mission is to promote a more positive and diverse image of black femininity, which means authenticity is at the heart of everything. Their products all include black seed oil, which is proven to strengthen hair that is curly, thick and voluminous.

Our challenge was to support the launch of their Natural Hair Revolution products with branding, photography, print, packaging and digital assets that showed the same strength, beauty and pride that led to their creation in the first place.

We wanted to create a visual identity and tone of voice that was sexy, sassy and aspirational, without feeling like it was out of reach for the average woman. More than ever when designing for people often left behind by traditional beauty, everything has to be built on a foundation of inclusivity.

Revlon Realistic needed to look different to other ethnic ranges on the shelves, carving out a unique identity so we could say: ‘finally, we get you.’ Everything had to be modern, and also completely honest and authentic. In the same way that each product has been specifically formulated for natural ethnic hair, so too was our brand and packaging and design across all touch points. We worked with Revlon Realistic every step of the way, from initial concept and branding, through to rollout across multiple touchpoints and mediums.

Once the principles of the brand were defined, we moved on to the packaging. The gold geometric pattern represents the building blocks to stronger hair, but beyond that they also hint at the idea of individuals coming together to form a stronger community. The colour palette was chosen for its bold, modern look, with not only real cut-through in-store, but also elegance in the home. We wanted these products to sit proudly in any bathroom, offering an almost ornamental quality that catches the eye.

We also supported the next stage of campaign development, which was – broadly-speaking – the marketing collateral. We planned, styled and art directed the photoshoot, crafting powerful and unique assets for print and online. Additionally we created 3D models to give maximum flexibility for future animations, digital banners and social media.

The final stage of the project was the international Revlon Realistic website, with sophisticated ecommerce functionality built in to handle complex currency conversions and shipping calculations. And because customer need was such a driver in the creation of Revlon Realistic in the first place, we wanted to offer tutorials, advice and wider style tips for our consumers. The Revlon Style Area kept them coming back for more, and from a business perspective it also offered a chance to cross- and up-sell. Finally, we knew we had to be as transparent as possible, so an animated FAQ section offered everyone the chance to engage with the brand and ask questions.

The response was extraordinary. Revlon Realistic is now on sale in more than 200 chains of retailers and online beauty outlets, with demand growing all the time. And in a category renowned for negative online feedback – ethnic hair and beauty – we’ve seen numerous positive video reviews, particularly praising the relatability of the brand and the recognisable image of modern black beauty on show.