By  on February 25, 2002

NEW YORK -- DuPont will be making a big marketing push this spring for women's underwear made of cotton and Lycra.

Karen Capone, DuPont's intimate apparel and swimwear brand manager, said this will be the first time that cotton-blend underwear, typically a basic commodity-type business, will be positioned by DuPont as a "true fashion product" that offers style, comfort and fit.

The multimillion-dollar national advertising campaign, which will later be expanded to include ready-to-wear, swimwear and activewear, will be unveiled in April in a four-page ad in Lucky magazine. The visual, which features a Lycra logo and a Jockey logo, depicts a playful lifestyle scene of a man and a woman wrestling in cotton and Lycra underwear by Jockey. The tagline reads "What do you look for in a great pair of underwear?"

Kathryn M. Smith, DuPont's marketing manager for Lycra/intimate apparel, said, "We discovered through consumer market research that women want intimate apparel ads that are real and playful, and they want to see the product."

Capone said Lucky magazine is popular with "serious shoppers" who often use logoed ministickers found on a "sticker page" so they can earmark items they plan to buy. The April issue will have a page dedicated to Lycra and Jockey logoed stickers.

The initial ad will feature product and trend information with a cover line saying, "Jockey Underwear with Lycra Goes Undercover 24/7," as well as a "Down Under" sweepstakes page for a $1,000 shopping spree and a trip for two to Australia.

In-store promotions will be supported by signage and point-of-sale materials. Additional underwear ads will run in Lucky's May, June and July issues, as well as Glamour magazine in April and May. The consumer reach will exceed 20 million, she said.

Capone further noted that an eight-page ad highlighting rtw, swimwear, activewear and underwear with Lycra will be featured in Vogue this spring.

"Two of the pages will be dedicated to intimate apparel as a leader of fashion," said Capone, noting that "Entertainment Tonight" host Julie Moran will appear in one ad wearing Calvin Klein underwear of cotton and Lycra. Other brands featured will be Natori, Wacoal and On Gossamer."We are so pleased because this brings intimate apparel into the fashion arena," said Smith.

Capone added that the benefits of the new co-brand partnership program with Lycra "Enhances partner garment brand value and appeal, drives customer traffic through innovation, increases sell-throughs and builds equity in the Lycra brand and partners' brands globally and regionally."

Consumer research of women aged 18-45 conducted by DuPont revealed that when shopping for everyday underwear, women want to be comfortable, but also appear pretty, cute and sexy. They also want a good fit, no panty lines, and a breathable, durable product that feels soft on the skin.

"Women just love to talk about underwear," said Capone. "Most participants seemed willing to pay about $1 more per pair for cotton underwear made with Lycra."

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