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NEW YORK — Just as automobiles come in all shapes and sizes, so do the fragrance deals that hinge on them.
Last week Avon became the latest beauty company to join the automotive fray by signing Kasey Kahne, a rising star with the NASCAR series. The news follows Hummer and Jaguar fragrance launches this year by Riviera Concepts and Cosmopolitan Cosmetics, respectively. Additionally, another NASCAR star, Jeff Gordon, was signed by Elizabeth Arden for its Halston Z-14 scent earlier this year. Kahne, 24, will be the spokesman for Avon’s Pro Sport Daily Performance men’s fragrance and grooming line.
Kahne, who won Rookie of the Year honors for the NASCAR season that recently ended, will appear on the cover of the third installment of “M — The Men’s Catalog,” due out in April. While Avon does not break out financial arrangements of endorsement deals, industry sources estimated the one-year pact could be worth roughly $500,000.
Separately, in a new variation on the automotive theme, motorcycle gurus Paul Teutul Sr. and Paul Teutul Jr., the bike-building duo of the Discovery Channel reality series “American Choppers,” have launched a scent called — what else? — Full Throttle.
True to its name, the scent got off to a quick start as the two Pauls appeared at the Danbury Fair Mall in Connecticut last month for a Filene’s launch event. Within a crowd of thousands, 700 people got to meet the Teutuls after purchasing the scent. Industry sources estimated that sales for the day exceeded $35,000. They added that the scent could generate first-year retail sales of $25 million. Pedal to the metal.
Paul Miller, general manager for the Teutuls’ licensee, Monte D Cosmetics, noted that Monte D founder Michael Malcolm formed the company to launch Full Throttle. The idea was to create a scent under license from Orange County Choppers, the Teutuls’ bike-building operation in Montgomery, N.Y.
“I thought it was a cool idea,” said Teutul Sr., who, along with son “Paulie,” has created everything from the Fire Bike, a memorial motorcycle built in honor of the firefighters lost on 9/11, to the 4-Up Softail, a bike featured in visuals for the scent.
“People look at [fragrance] as feminine,” added Teutul Sr., a self-proclaimed fan of cologne.
This meticulous groomer of a modified handlebar moustache continued, “I think I’m pretty far from being feminine, if you know what I’m saying.”
Meanwhile, for the Avon deal, Kahne will represent seven Pro Sport stockkeeping units with an average price point of $5.70. “I use the face wash, body wash and the deodorant,” the fresh-faced, Seattle-born racer remarked. Pro Sport also features a 4.2-oz. eau de toilette spray, a fresh fougere scent, for $12.99.
Full Throttle, which is also in the fougere family — a “cooling aromatic fougere” by Takasago, Monte D’s Miller noted — has been launched in 1,000 department store doors, including Belk, Dillard’s, Kaufmann’s, Famous Barr, Foley’s and Rich’s-Macy’s. Plans call for a rollout to 2,000 doors by the end of 2005. About $8 million will be spent to promote Full Throttle, which will come in three cologne sprays: 30-ml., 50-ml., and 100-ml. versions priced at $25, $32 and $46, respectively.
Paltry numbers compared with the price tag of an Orange County Choppers custom bike, which can run anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 or more.