Brand Packaging

An Oral Fix In A Tin

September 1, 2006

An Oral Fix In A Tin
by Jennifer Acevedo

Years after the abrupt end to the Internet boom, and still our country has no shortage of young entrepreneurs. Take Jeremy Kahn, Henry Rich, and Jon Harris—three Ivy League grads who started making mints out of a former chocolate factory in Hopewell, NJ, in 2003.
The trio dreamed up the idea for the brightly colored mints, which are packaged in sleek brushed metal tins reminiscent of a 1920s cigarette case, to satisfy smokers stuck in a smoke-free environment or former smokers trying hard to kick the habit. Hence the name, Oral Fixation (tagline: “Get Your Fix”), and the evolution of a brand that has become a favorite of celebs like Britney Spears and Beyonce.
“We wanted to put something out there that was credible in its quality, yet stunning in its presentation, much like the criteria you put forth when purchasing a luxury item,” says Kahn.
Mints are available in nine flavors: Mimosa Mint, Antioximint, Jasmint, Fabulous Fruit, 7 Deadly Cinnamon, Night Light, Mojito Mint, Classical Peppermint, and Spare Mint. Each gourmet mint is engraved with a cleverly corresponding icon, so Classical Peppermint features a treble clef and Mojito Mint is imprinted with a Cuban star.
Recently, the brand introduced a BYOB (Build Your Own Box) option, which allows online customers to assemble a custom six-pack of the flavors they like best (visit www.oralfix.com). A printed paperboard sleeve keeps the six tins organized and at the ready.
Of equal priority when creating the packaging was the goal of providing consumers with something that was functional, yet aesthetically pleasing. In keeping with the company’s philosophy of taking everyday objects and making them beautiful, Kahn and his partners took great care when sourcing the metal tins for the project. They knew that nothing short of perfect would do, so Kahn made the journey to the supplier’s manufacturing facilities in China to ensure the color, size, and feel of the package was “just right.”
The exterior design of each tin, along with the wax paper inside, follows a different theme, depending on the flavor. The intricate themes (Mimosa Mint features a bubbling champagne glass set on a shimmering orange background) are explored in the illustrations, which were rendered by co-founder and graphic artist Harris.
“I know that we make and sell mints,” says Rich, laughing. “But, they’re so much more than just that. They are conversation starters. I mean, the tins themselves look more like a James Bond cigarette holder than a typical mint box, and you have to admit that when you hold a tin of Oral Fixation mints in your hand, you feel a bit cooler!”
And, in addition to serving as a stylish home for the mints, the tins have a life of their own after the package is emptied. The slim containers were designed to fit credit cards, business cards, cash, and an ID for a night on the town minus a bulky purse or wallet. Kahn is confident that the brand’s attention to detail has struck a chord with its consumers.
“We feel confident that people want their lives to be better…in all senses. Whether indulgent or necessity, we want to feel good about all of our purchases, right down to the mints you grab at the grocer. And, our customers are mirroring that message back to us,” he says.
The author, Jennifer Acevedo, is the Editor-in-Chief, of BRANDPACKAGING.