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Vera Wang’s New Princess Has an Edge

Vera Wang's Princess is showing its edgy side this spring with a limited edition scent called Rock Princess.

Vera Wang’s Princess is showing its edgy side this spring with a limited edition scent called Rock Princess.

“This scent brings a hip, rebellious side of the princess to counter,” said Lori Singer, group vice president of global marketing for Coty Prestige Designer Fragrances, which includes Vera Wang, Marc Jacobs and Kenneth Cole. “This scent fits in with our strategy of launching limited edition Princess fragrances — we think every girl can find her own princess in this range. For instance, this princess would trade her tiara for a new guitar. We really believe in the Princess franchise’s endless possibilities and want to continue to support the existing juice with pops of newness.”

A “dark fruity floral,” Rock Princess, concocted by Givaudan’s Calice Becker, opens with succulent white peach, lush, bittersweet red raspberry and vibrant bergamot; has a heart of heliotrope, vintage-inspired rose, night-blooming jasmine, delicate lily, and dries down with plush cashmere woods, smoldering musk, iris and creamy coconut.

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The bottle is the core Princess bottle reimagined in smoky gray glass with a heavy metal-toned overlay. The signature Princess crown and ring are of gunmetal and rhinestones. The outer carton is jet black with graffiti rendered in metallic silver and pink.

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Eaux de toilette sprays in 1 oz. and 3.4 oz. — $45 and $72, respectively — will be sold in the U.S.; a 1.7-oz. eau de toilette will be sold only in international markets. A 5-oz. body lotion, $32, will also be offered in the brand’s U.S. distribution of 2,800 department and specialty store doors. The line will launch in April.

While none of the executives would discuss sales projections, industry sources estimated that Rock Princess could do $12 million to $15 million in the U.S., and perhaps an additional $5 million to $8 million internationally in its time on counter.

Coty is targeting upwards of 16 million scented impressions. Many will be delivered through in-store events, which are slated to include crystal tattoo applications and decorate-your-own-guitar-pick necklace parties in addition to traditional sampling, such as vials on cards. “This is really a project that lends itself to fun and edgy in-store events,” said Susan Kelly, senior director of global marketing for the Vera Wang, Marc Jacobs and Kenneth Cole brands at Coty Prestige.

Added Singer: “It’s about setting the mood and building it out to have a fun in-store environment. We’re going back to the idea of retail-tainmnent, which we believe will be more important than ever in these economic times.”

As well, national print advertising for the scent, shot by Dylan Griffin, will begin running in April fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazines. While executives declined to discuss advertising budgets, industry sources estimated Coty would spend about $6 million in the U.S. on advertising and sales promotions.

While this princess may be out of the tower, more will follow, said Singer. “We have lots of compelling Princess ideas, and we can’t wait to realize them.”