NEW YORK — Liz Claiborne Cosmetics is planning to add a little Soul to its Curve brand.

The company will launch Soul by Curve, a new masterbrand, in September. As part of the company’s continuing strategy to create freestanding fragrance brands, Soul will be marketed under the Curve Cosmetics name rather than Liz Claiborne Cosmetics. The brand followed the same strategy with the launch of its Realities for Women scent last year.

“The launch of [the original] Curve in 1996 was an interesting departure from the industry in terms of fragrance and packaging direction,” said Art Spiro, president of Liz Claiborne Cosmetics. “There were a lot of naysayers about Liz Claiborne launching a brand for Gen Xers, but it was very successful. And as it has evolved, we know it is a brand that has legs and its own point of view. So it made sense for us to launch Soul under the Curve banner.”

When Curve was initially introduced, it had 18- to 24-year-olds as its target. “That initial consumer base has grown up, and we’re now taking new consumers into the franchise, both old and young, with Soul,” said Spiro, who noted that Soul is targeted at 25- to 35-year-olds.

Spiro is quick to point out that Soul is not a flanker. “The two are connected in spirit, but Soul has a completely different look,” he said of the new masterbrand, which features a sort of bohemian apothecary packaging. “There’s no similarity between the bottle shape, but when you look at it you can see there’s a connection in terms of market position and the point of difference.”

Soul by Curve for Women, by Loc Dong and Jean Marc Chaillan of International Flavors & Fragrances, is a watery green floral. Its top notes are of hydroponic bamboo, white water lily, green lotus leaf and freesia; its heart is of Arizona cactus flower, Tahitian tiara, blue tiger lily, jasmine, tuberose and gardenia, and its drydown is of blond woods, nutmeg, heliotrope, second-skin musk and incense. It is packaged in a clear bottle with a silver cap and a heart-shaped label, and packaged in an embossed silver-toned cardboard box.

This story first appeared in the May 27, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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Eaux de parfum in two sizes, 1.7 oz. for $45 and 3.4 oz. for $55, will be available. Two ancillaries, a 6.7-oz. body lotion and a 6.7-oz. moisturizing shower gel, will also be marketed. They will retail for $35 and $25, respectively.

Soul by Curve for Men, by IFF’s Chaillan and Laurent LeGuernec, is a fresh wood scent with top notes of hydroponic bamboo, bergamot, green apple and mandarin; a heart of violet, sage, lavender, floracy of muguet (lily of the valley) and hyacinth, and a drydown of amber, moss, sandalwood, palmetto spice and cedarwood. Its bottle is an amber-toned glass with a medallion-shaped label bearing the words love, passion, truth and hope. Its outer packaging is bronze embossed cardboard.

Eaux de cologne will come in two sizes, 1.7 oz. for $45 and 3.4 oz. for $55. A 4.2-oz. aftershave soother, $35, and a 2.6-oz. deodorant, $15, will also be produced.

Both scents are targeted at men and women aged 25 to 40 and will be available in the company’s full U.S. distribution, about 2,000 department stores. While none of the executives would comment on projected sales or advertising spending, industry sources estimated that the masterbrand would do about $40 million at retail in its first year on counter and that some $20 million would be spent on advertising and promotion.

National advertising, shot by Jeff Gray and Robert Deutschman, will break in September fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazines, noted Sue Hochman, vice president of sales for Liz Claiborne Cosmetics. The ad is a collage of lifestyle images featuring both male and female models, both bottles and a vintage car that Hochman hinted could play a part in promotional plans for the brand. Sampling will also be a large part of the initiative, she added, with more than 30 million scented impressions being planned.

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