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Gucci Guilty Stud Makes Debut for Limited Time

Covered in 400 metallic studs and priced five percent higher the original Guilty scent, the fragrance will roll out globally to 20,000 doors in February.

Gucci Guilty, one of P&G Prestige’s best-selling scent franchises is getting texturized, for a limited time.

Covered in more than 400 metallic studs and priced 5 percent higher the original Guilty scent, Gucci Guilty Stud Limited Edition, a his and hers duo that was previewed on Dec. 1 exclusively at Harrods in London and Takashimaya in Singapore, will roll out globally to 20,000 doors in February. The limited-edition offering is meant to reinforce the portfolio and boost sales across all Guilty scents, according to Luigi Feola, vice president, global luxury brands for P&G Prestige.

“It’s pretty much a global phenomenon for us,” said Feola of the takeaway success of the Guilty range, which includes Gucci by Gucci pillar, Flora and Guilty. “Gucci Stud is more of what we look at as a collector’s item. It is meant to drive focus on the entire franchise, promote the entire line and give something meaningful to retailers and consumers.”

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While no sales numbers were available, industry sources estimate that Gucci Guilty and its flankers, Gucci Guilty Black and Gucci Guilty Intense, have sold more than 20 million units since the first Guilty iteration was introduced in 2010.

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According to The NPD Group, Gucci Guilty Black Pour Homme was the number-one prestige fragrance launch in 2013, while the women’s version was the number-three launch for the year. “There’s a sexiness to Gucci and it really resonated with both genders,” NPD’s vice president and global beauty industry analyst, Karen Grant, told WWD in the spring.

The concept behind the first Guilty offering, Gucci Guilty for her, which was positioned for a young, social-networking consumer, was centered on sex appeal and digital connectivity.

The corresponding ad campaign, which executives had revealed was substantially more funded than other launches due to its interactive nature, featured risqué imagery and a focus on social media.

“The concept from Frida [Giannini] was indulgence into guilty pleasures and now we want to continue to play into that territory,” said Feola, adding that a new advertising campaign will roll out corresponding with the launch. “The studs are simple and elegant, but [impart] edginess, provocation and seduction.”

Although P&G would not disclose sales figures, industry sources believe the studded editions of Gucci Guilty could generate between $90 million and $100 million globally in their first year at retail. This figure would include not only sales of the limited-edition bottles, which retail for $80 for the women’s 1.6-oz. eau de parfum and $88 for the men’s 3-oz. eau de toilette, but also the overall impact on the existing Guilty business, which is estimated at $500 million.

“With activities like a limited edition, we tried to bring it back to the focus in-store to attract more consumers and get them to trade up to [a] more luxury offering in terms of fragrance choice,” said Feola, adding that since P&G acquired the Gucci license in 2006, the Gucci fragrance business has more than tripled. “It has been a great success story. We continue to grow between two and three times the industry rate on overall Gucci franchise,” he said. “Maybe there is room later on for another pillar but we are now focusing on these. It is our intent to sustain and support them.”