Crit* Tingz

Launched by natural chewing gum brand Peppersmith, a company established in 2010 by former Innocent employees Dan Shrimpton and Mike Stevens, Tingz are a new, two flavour confectionary range that uses Xylitol, a natural wood sugar, to add plaque reducing property to the sweets.

Developed by London-based B&B, the agency behind the Peppersmith visual identity, the packaging for the line builds on the quirky personality of the brand, by introducing two wide-mouthed monster characters, a contrasting white and bright colour palette and subtle texture to create a wholesome but flavourful quality that reflects the natural, dental improving properties of the sweets.

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“For the past four years, we’ve been helping Peppersmith reinvent the healthy confectionery market, first with chewing gum then with mints. With the grown-ups satisfied, it was time to turn our attention to kids with the launch of tingz – little bags of delicious sweets that are actively good for teeth. Made with xylitol – a natural wood sugar – these British Dental Health Foundation accredited sweets help reduce plaque and lessen the risk of tooth decay.

Recognising the need to appeal to kids’ sense of fun over the long term, our team created a compelling brand world with real depth and potential, starring a pair of hairy monsters, Bowie and Floyd. At the same time, it was vital to reassure adults about the sweets’ healthy qualities, so our packaging relies on the monsters’ mouths, highlighting dental health in a fun and clever way. We’ve even created interactive SRPs that use the monsters’ mouths to dispense the bags.

The tingz brand world comes vividly to life beyond the pack, with a website and booklets that tell the back-stories of our monsters and their forest friends, and we’ve created trade show stands and marketing materials too.”

- B&B Studio

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While characters are widespread across the confectionary category, B&B have managed to create contemporary, well rendered and distinctive monsters that, for such elemental line drawings, still manage to deliver individual personality which is appropriately expanded on-line through a story-book narrative that blurs fun and fact.

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Constructed from geometric form, flat single colour, intentional misregistration, rough edges and subtle texture - set within the more organic hand drawn environments on-line - the illustrations have a natural, earthy, crafted undertone and a simplicity that avoids the synthetic and associated artificial qualities of computer generated characters. Their candy eyes add a depth and create a nice bridge between brand aesthetic and actual product, consistently occurring across the owl as well and establishing a straightforward and expandable style for the future.

The large mouth, heart shaped throat, white teeth and big wide smiles - an original communicative detail well utilised across the opening of the box - tie them to the dental proposition with a friendly, confident positivity you often see used in dental waiting rooms.

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The bright red and warm orange tones of the characters are enhanced by the use of plenty of ‘clinical’ white space. A clear, communicative contrast of bold fruity flavour and the sugar-free and plaque reducing proposition.

A sans serif Tingz wordmark - its wood-block-like shadow, much like the eyes, adding a sense of depth alongside the flat illustrations - is given a loose, cut and paste resolution. Its all lowercase letterforms deliver contrast to the uppercase Peppersmith logo-type which together balance youthfulness with the sense of traditional, good quality. While a condensed, handwritten, uppercase secondary typeface - without a consistent baseline - adds a childlike honesty to the written communication.

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It is a solution that uses contrast to unite natural, good quality, sweet fruity flavour and dental health, modern parental concerns and their desire to have their children engaged through honest, straightforward language and typography, playful twists on traditional aesthetics, subtly reinforced by fun but communicative illustration, and a striking colour palette, all set within a broader eco-system that bridges pack and digital experience.

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Richard Baird

Richard is a British freelance design consultant and writer who specialises in logos, branding and packaging. He has written for Brand New and Design Week, featured in Computer Arts magazine, Logology, Los Logos, Logolounge, The Big Book of Packaging and runs the blogs BP&O and Design Survival.

Twitter:@richbaird

Blog: BP&O

Portfolio:richardbaird.co.uk

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