GAP’S COLORFUL SCENT

Byline: Laura Klepacki

NEW YORK — There is something pink in the air and Gary McNatton, senior vice president of Gap personal care, has reached up and bottled it.
That’s how he describes the inspiration for the specialty chain’s latest scent — So Pink — which went on sale on Gap.com March 18 and will enter GapBody stores and 530 adult Gap stores beginning April 16. It will also roll out internationally to Europe, Canada and Japan, although Japan will only market specially designed “mini” fragrances, a package form the region “loves” remarked McNatton.
Gap is not alone in its interest in all things pink. Victoria’s Secret Beauty unveiled a fragrance called Pink earlier this year. “It is all out there in the universe at the same time and there is a handful of people who recognize it,” said McNatton.
He looks at the scents as “two totally different animals.” Still, he was “surprised” by the Victoria’s Secret fragrance. But, added McNatton, “it did not make me want to change my plan of attack, only strengthen it.”
Described as a “bright, citrus floral,” sales of So Pink are expected to at least match Dream, Gap’s most popular scent to date. McNatton declined to reveal sales projections, but sources predict it could do $10 million in retail sales the first year. He said So Pink is the Gap’s third icon scent following Heaven and Dream.
“Because it was a part of the icon series, we knew what the packaging would look like,” said McNatton. Referring to the outer box, he said, “The difficult part was finding the right shade of pink. We wanted it to have vibrancy and energy.” The juice is also a light shade of pink bottled in frosted glass. So Pink has a top note of pink grapefruit and orange, middle note of muguet, fresh lily and sweet pea; it finishes with jasmine and fresh musk. Mark Blaison of Cosmo International Fragrances created the scent.
A 3.4-oz. eau de toilette is $19.50 and the mini .5-oz. eau de toilette is $4.50. There is also a body lotion and a shimmer lotion for $8.50 each, a $12.50 gel candle, a scent stick for $4.50 and a body mist for $12.50.
For marketing support, Gap is using a photograph of pink liquid to reflect the color pink and the fresh, watery nature of the scent. So Pink will not receive traditional advertising. Rather, there will be in-store promotions. McNatton said there is “something wild and unexpected” planned for April 15 in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago, but declined to offer clues.
Scent strips of So Pink will be sampled with Gap Card bills. There will also be a limited edition So Pink nail polish, free with a minimum $10 So Pink purchase. With the purchase of a full size fragrance, customers will receive a big, pink, silk flower pin.