If you’re at all interested in makeup, you’ll have seen some social media posts lately for Too Faced that are….weirdly sexual? The link between makeup and sex appeal is made pretty frequently in marketing. After all, while makeup is a form of artistic expression, you can’t deny it’s also supposed to make you look better. Many brands have walked the line with sassy product names in an attempt to drawn in consumers or maybe just shock them. But I always felt it was fine and tasteful…until this.
First of all, take it from a certified skincare addict: No one who cares about their skin is going to put glitter on it. However, the makeup community is very influenced by “newness” and especially hard to get items. Too Faced was smart to originally launch the product as a limited edition item. In fact, the mask sold out in its original launch in December. However, we know from Better Business Bureau stats on other brands (cough…Kylie) that makeup companies love to underproduce to create an air of exclusivity. The product has since become a permanent addition to the Too Faced line.
Since a quick read of the ingredient list makes it obvious Too Faced does not care about our skin, I can only assume this item was devised entirely with the intention of internet fame. Makeup companies thrive off of utilizing influencers. This is a product practically begging to be sent to such individuals in exchange for a perfectly posed picture of them in a glittering face mask. Probably in a tub. Probably with a glass of wine. The perfect image of luxury and extravagance, and one which is easily linked to Too Faced as a brand.
The other strategy at play here is shock value. I know at least one person has been tweeting a lot about this (it’s me.). Too Faced is probably hoping people will have an opinion on this, and in talking about it give them free advertising. I fell right in that trap because I have a big mouth.
To be clear, I don’t have an issue with suggestive marketing. I don’t think it’s even always a bad idea. There are a lot of iconic makeup products with cheeky names. What’s weird is that Too Faced went from rarely utilizing this type of marketing to using it in every product name and every Twitter post. I guess they thought that if Better Than Sex mascara was a hit, they should keep going with it. This comes across as raunchy (at best) and potentially offensive to people who aren’t into that and follow Too Faced for actual information about products. I think the lesson here is that imitation is never a good way to keep up with the competition. While this type of social media strategy works well for other brands, it’s too overt and poorly executed for Too Faced.