Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Equal 0 Calorie Sweetener: 'Classic' vs 'Original' Packaging Design

    ABOVE: Equal Classic box and packet designs.
      BELOW: Equal Original box and packet designs.

Snaxtime loves Equal. It's not only tasty in coffee and tea, but also on breakfast cereal! It's always a good idea to have some Equal handy to sweeten up a nice cold bowl of Raisin Bran or Frosted Mini Wheats. The artificial sweetener in the iconic blue packet is made with aspartame, the same low calorie sweetener used in Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi.  Aspartame is way better tasting than saccharin, the other major low calorie sweetener that is the main ingredient in the pink packeted Sweet'N Low.

Lately, something strange has happened to Equal's packaging design. We love the 80s looking box design for Equal "Classic" with the clean white coffee cup and blocky font accented by a swoosh of dots over the text. The packets inside have the same rad look. But sometime last year, every store starting carrying Equal "Original," which has an entirely new look to both the box and packet with Equal written out in a simplified cursive font without the signature swoosh of dots. Aside from the name and design change, there is not a decipherable difference between "Classic" and "Original." So why the change? To complicate things further, the Canadian website advertises the cooler "Classic" variety while the US website is now highlighting "Original." Fortunately, American superstores Walmart and Target still sell Equal Classic (or maybe they haven't updated their stock image).

Certainly it's silly to pine over the packaging design of an artificial sweetener, but it's little aesthetic details like this that keep life interesting.

What do you think?
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