Beauty brands tend to follow certain cliches, but one that aims to change the game requires a unique identity. DCYPHER teamed up with agency Sergeant Walnuts to deliver just that, resulting in a sharp look that's inspired by its technological approach to personalising make-up.
Describing itself as the world's first ‘mixed to measure’ beauty brand, DCYPHER aims to make scanning dozens of shades on a shelf to find one that "comes close" a thing of the past by making bespoke foundation to match each customer's unique skin tone. Its new branding is as unique as its process (see our pick of the best branding books for more inspiration).
DCYPHER uses camera technology to scan customers' skin, and uses that data to create a bespoke foundation using a patent-pending machine process. To back up that novel approach, new creative agency, Manchester-based Sergeant Walnuts developed its branding with technology in mind.
The agency took inspiration from the concept of cracking each individual customer's ‘beauty code’. “We were determined not to ‘dumb down’ the use of technology at the heart of DCYPHER’s offering,” explains Sergeant Walnuts MD Richard Attwater talking about the project.
“Many beauty brands assume that consumers are either unable, or unwilling, to digest complex information, and instead opt to go down well-trodden and often clichéd paths. We knew we were talking to an intelligent and curious consumer who’d see the technology for what it is – a genuine and valuable point of difference”.
The idea of a beauty code led the agency draw on influences as diverse as Alan Turing’s Enigma Machine and the dots and dashes of morse code. The result is an identity that's distinctive and, somewhat uniquely in the makeup sector, also meaningful, while still looking like a desirable beauty product.
"The visual world of codes, cryptograms and ciphers is incredibly rich and interesting, so, we chose to amplify it as a visual language," says creative director Gary Toal. “The grids provided us with the structural foundation (no pun intended) for both our packaging and comms, with the dots being placed in specific ‘cells’ to reflect each individual’s unique skin tone ID."