Saturday, August 14th, 2010

Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick
Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick

Are you willing to pay the price for a product’s packaging?

Pictured above is the signature, ultra elegant Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick.  This lipstick case is probably one of the most interesting pieces I own amongst all of my beauty products.  It’s both functional and extravagant, and I’d wager that you usually don’t get both.  The rub is, of course, that you are undoubtedly paying for the packaging upgrade.  (In case you’ve never drooled over one of the Rouge Gs–you lucky soul–these retail for $46 a pop.)

Knowing that, does it make it any easier to resist the product?  To cry, “Pfft!  I see through you!  No thank you, you won’t sucker me in!” Personally, after testing out many shades of Rouge G, no, it does not.  Not at all.  It is still one of my favorite lipstick formulas, and so the hefty price tag, even for packaging that I don’t really want to pay for, is something I will still pay.  But this is only because I find the product to be exceptional–if the product was just so-so, I think (or at least, I’d like to believe!) I would have no trouble passing these by.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

61 thoughts on “Are you willing to pay the price for a product’s packaging?

  1. I agree with you on the last point. If the product inside is truly wonderful and meets my needs then yes, I would purchase it. Although I do admit, when I bought my first Chanel Rouge Allure I was (kind of) suckered in my the novel pen-click mechanism. For me the only problem with luxe packaging is that it can be cumbersome to carry around.

  2. Frances

    I don’t really have a problem resisting fancy packaging BUT I do think that high-end brands should have decent (not cheap-looking) packaging. My favourite packaging is definitely Chanel’s: sleek, streamlined and luxe. For me, the Rouge G packaging was a real turn-off. I just can’t bring myself to splurge on a product whose price is so obviously jacked up by fancy packaging. On the other hand, I can totally justify paying even more for Cle de Peau lipsticks because I can imagine that it’s really ALL just the amazing formula :-)

  3. Melanie

    To me, the packaging is very imporant, because I store my make up so everyone (mainly me ;)) can see :) And if the packaging sucks, I just can’t love it as much as I should. I def wouldn’t buy the product, if the packaging is fab, but the product itself just doesn’t work for me, but to me, both, packaging and product, have to be appealing. :)

  4. Joanna

    I’m willing to pay extra for packaging if it appeals to me,

    For me, packaging has to be consistent, that’s one of the reasons i love MAC’s packaging, I can’t handle Benefit and brands like that. It looks so messy and random to me; it makes me tight in the chest! :o)

  5. If the formula is good too then I usually just want the item even more, for example with Guerlain’s Fall collection palettes. So beautiful! I really want one!

  6. aradhana

    not for the packaging alone, no.
    i might be willing if i absolutely loved a product, but if it were along the lines of the lipstick pictured, i’d probably try to limit myself to one essential shade. the lipstick pictured is the epitome of luxury, and i think regardless of the price tag, i’d be inclined to treat it as such. (maybe one day i’ll purchase a rouge g, but i’ll have to decide my perfect shade first!)

  7. Annika

    NEVER. It is neither economical or ecological. Plus, I love sleek, simple packaging – I love MAC and LUSH for both the exceptional, long lasting products as well as minimal/minimalistic packaging (and the recycling thereof)!

  8. Vijaya

    My mom has a couple of these. She and I, though, weren’t that impressed with the actual lipstick and thought that the packaging was bulky and waaaay too heavy. Not that the flip open mirror isn’t really cool, but to buy one I’d have to find a color that I loved and would be able to find nowhere else.

    These just don’t do it for me!

  9. Nikki

    Not at this point in my life. I feel like I am splurging when I am buying MAC. I hope to someday own maybe one luxury item.

  10. Well, I have mostly testers of these Rouge G lipsticks that I bought for £7 ($10) each, so I think you’ll work out the answer easily. 😀 I have a few original ones too, but I’m not fussed, I’m quite happy to have just the tester lipsticks. Although I have to say that I really like the idea of a lipstick case with a mirror as you don’t often have a mirror with you when out and about. Anyway… I don’t normally fork out for the packaging so much as the brand/product itself. But then I guess if you buy a luxury brand product it’ll include a fancier packaging too.

  11. lol, I’d love to see people yell that in stores. Even if it was for something like Doritos

  12. Eileen

    Would I pay extra for exceptional packaging? No. Would I pay extra for the packaging if it included exceptional product? Yes. Case in point: Guerlain’s new eye shadow palettes. The case is phenomenally beautiful and is worthy of collecting, but that’s not why I bought two of them. What justified the hefty price tag for me, was the superb quality and sophistication of the eye shadows. For me, the eye shadows warrant the price and those stunning silver cases are a bonus.

  13. KatieM

    I’m a sucker for great packaging. I insist the product be worth it as well but the combo is nigh irresistible and I’m willing to pay for it. I’d love to say I only care about the product but I would be totally lying. In my defense companies spend millions on packaging designs alone and I’ve seen bad package sink products (see UD Loose Pigments)

  14. Etaoin

    Only once in a while items I will buy for nice packaging like guerlain eyeshadows. I also quite like chanel packaging and the fact that it all matches – the lipstick packaging is like mini-perfume packaging. Oh and MAC loves Barbie and Hello Kitty collections, I’m a sucker for a bit of kitsch!

  15. Georgia Llewellyn

    I just wish I could get refills for mine!

  16. Sarah

    This packaging confuses me.. Whats the point of it?

  17. izabela

    When I first saw that, I thought it was a gun! Haha.
    But It looks really nice. I would buy maybe a few for when I’m going out.

  18. Rachel

    I just can’t justify these and it breaks my heart because they are *insanely* gorgeous. I would love it if I could snag them for cheaper, without the fancy packaging. I’ve seen testers on ebay, but who knows if they’re legit!

  19. Cherokee

    I totally agree with you Christine. If the product is exceptional but the packaging boosts the price, I would pay for it anyway because it is quality. But if the product isn’t that great, packaging would not influence me to make a purchase.

  20. weng

    i dont mind spending a lot on a product for as long as the quality of the actual product is really good and of course if the packaging is well done as well..but im really hesitant paying a lot on an item that is very expensive but the packaging is cheap…..i recently bought cleu de peau lipsticks…i will be honest the product is good but considering the price tag, they could have done something with the packaging…no offense, IMO, i just find with a price that high, they could have presented the product a bit better..i never had a doubt with the guerlain rouge G line…i have nearly collected all lipstick in these line and i am very pleased…its so hard to go back and use my other lipstick collection now because i always compare it to my lovely guerlain lipstick

  21. sophie

    i don’t really care about the packaging! and i will NEVER pay more than 20 euro(25 $)for a lipstick, that is just a ripoff! the most expensive lipstick i have is the buttershine lipstick from clinique and i love it (it costs 20euro) than are mac lipsticks (17euro). My all time favorite lipsticks are maybellines and they cost only 10euro!

  22. Cheyenne

    Not at all. I rather spend my money on something else. I love packaging but I find that really ‘unnecessary.’ I can’t really see from this picture what the packaging is either. (I need to see it for myself, this weird contraption.) When it comes to my money I WOULD spend this much money, but on a palette. I have spent it on a Primer before too (highly regret, I did not see a difference)

    Don’t get me wrong though, all their lipsticks you have reviewed are beautiful!! I am jealous but really too scared to splurge. BUT remember I am still a make up virgin when it comes to non-drugstore 😀 ONE day I’ll say one of the lessons you learned….

    “You learn to forget about price tags. $14 used to be expensive, $20 used to be your “max,” and now $60 doesn’t seem outrageous.”

    That’s the one that stood out to me the most. ^_^ Your truly passionate about make up!! No matter how expensive, it’s beautiful and you review it for us! (I’m getting off topic!!)

  23. Andrea

    Yes I am a sucker for beautiful packaging if the product itself is worth the splurge. I have found Guerlain to deliver both beautiful packaging & wonderful products like the Rouge G lipsticks & the new eyeshadows.

  24. Kristina

    I detube my lipsticks so I hate having to pay extra for packaging!

  25. TheJoey

    I think that I have said this before. Pretty packaging is not as much of a draw but functional easy to store and use packaging will convince me to buy a just okay product.

  26. I so wanted to love the Guerlain Rouge G packaging, but in reality I find it way too heavy and bulky. I also don’t like that the mirror flips open every time you take the lipstick out — I know that’s supposed to be a convenient feature, but for me it just makes it more cumbersome. I’d have bought another Rouge G, but was even happier when I found that there were some shades of Kiss Kiss Strass that suited me better. Cheaper and easier to deal with!

  27. Sasha

    i love packaging, it’s what makes or breaks a product for me. no matter how lovely any drug store lipstick maybe in terms of the product itself, I can’t stand flimsy plastic packaging. I love my dior addict high shine lipsticks for the packaging (of course- it’s rainbow colored! it’s the prettiest packaging i have in my collection), and also for the product inside, which in my opinion is the best sheer lip stick out there. Granted I haven’t tried every sheer lipstick formula, but even if I did i think I would still love my 28 dollar dior ipstick the best.
    I’m looking forward to trying the burberry lip “covers” (tee hee), not only because of the packaging, but because i heard the product was fantastic. Also, their powder foundation- I can’t pass that up, even if it is 60 dollars. I need that burberry check!

    • weng

      i have recently bought some lipstick from burberry and its amazing,,plus of course the packaging is very posh!!!!the powder foundation is also nice, it gives you good coverage, not heavy or cakey at all….

      • Julie

        I recently purchased Tea Rose and it is beautiful. I love the magnetic closure and the formula itself is great to apply!

  28. Zombii

    NO! Usually fancy packaging is compensation for something lacking in the formula department. You know who sees my makeup collection? Me. And it’s just some crap thrown in a basket that I rifle around in once a day (maybe), so it’s not like something pretty would even be used for display.

    • Julie

      I tend to disagree with your comment about how packaging is just a ploy to make up for a lack in formula. Chanel’s Rouge Allure has a beautiful pen click mechanism and it is one of the best formulas I have ever tried in a lipstick. Granted I have not tried every single lip product out there so maybe you’re right. However, I get joy from my products and treat them carefully = )

  29. Marina

    If i already pay a lot for a HE product, i can as well pay for its chic packaging. Why not? It’s another pleasure using make-up that’s nice on the inside AND outside :)

  30. Yumi

    It would depend on the product itself. If it’s close to HG or nothing short of amazing, then maybe. Of course, the packaging would have to be functional first and foremost. I do think we have quite a few choices when it comes to beauty products so if an item wasn’t functional or good enough, we could always just choose something else. I wouldn’t buy that Guerlain lipstick though, looks really unnnecessary hehe, even if it looks cool!

  31. I happen to own that lipstick and to be completely addicted to it as well. Yes, the packaging is beautiful (and Guerlain created it in collaboration with a famous jeweler), but it is also highly functional and doubles as a pocket mirror. But as you said, the lipstick in itself is also excellent (very hydrating, beautiful color). I know other hign-end brands may have formulas just as good, and yet I find the mirror so useful that I’ll buy this again even if it’s more expensive.
    But I’m going to have a hard time throwing it away when I’ll be done with it. I think that given the price and the packaging, Guerlain should develop a refill.

    • I keep hearing rumors they will do refills, but who knows.

      As much as I like the packaging… it’s a pain in the butt to store if you have a few of them. The mirror part makes it super functional on the go, but not so much at home!

  32. yeah

    want!! dont care about the price

  33. AnGeLwInGz

    I’m not a sucker for packaging, although I do consider flimsy packaging a turn-off. My favorite brands, Urban Decay and Dior, both come in nice packaging and it’s a drag knowing I’m paying extra for it because I buy so much.

  34. nicci

    I have one lipstick from Guerlain Rogue G and it is one of the best lipsticks I have. But what caught my attention was the packaging, I have never seen anything like it before. But I won’t buy an item just for the packaging.

  35. Shelley

    I don’t care for the packaging pictured. I don’t want a bulky lipstick. If I am totally in love with the product, packaging won’t matter quite as much, but I will still be hesitant with bigger than average packaging. Regarding price, I can’t see myself paying over $35 for a lipstick, and at that price, it had better do my laundry and make me look like a supermodel. I am not a frugal person as it is, but it’s lipstick…I prefer lipstick to cost less than a video game unless it will totally transform me.

  36. Hend

    I’m a huge packaging junkie !
    especially when it comes to lipsticks and compact powders!
    Not only because I love pretty little things !
    But I also love to have a close look to the details of the packaging,
    because Im hoping to be lucky enough to major in luxury industrial design
    -I love Dior’s packagings , very sleek yet kinda girly and glamourous !
    -I also adore Geurialn’s packaging , and how they’re inspired from oriental ornaments!
    -Chanel’s skin care has the most elegant packaging on earth !!
    -In the other hand I dislike The Balm and Benefit’s packagings! I mean really! they have some really cool pieces like their lipsticks, and their Some kind-A Gorgeous foundation !!
    But the Coralista blush ! God! this is like the worst packaging I have ever seen ! :(

    I may buy an expensive product just for the packaging yes! but I wont repurchase it again if the product it self wasn’t really good!

    • Julie

      Lol, I agree Coralista is hideous. Dandelion’s was at least related to the actual product but the color scheme of Coralista…man.

  37. Vee

    I collect vintage makeup compacts and man, do I wish they still did packaging like that! I love the feel of a solid, metal blush compact. Or the ornate detailing. So, I kinda do like to pay for packaging.

  38. Amal

    If the packaging is really pretty and the material is so good, then why not? I’ve got 2 of Guerlain Rouge G Lipsticks and I’m so in love with them, even with a price tag of $57 each

  39. Kathy

    The products themselves are the main selling point for me, but nice packaging certainly doesn’t hurt (especially if I’m going to spend quite a bit of money on a product anyway).

    I think the packaging should be nice, since that’s what catches my eye first when trying out stuff at places like Ulta and Sephora. I won’t purchase a product with poor and/or really ugly packaging though. On some level, I want the packaging to look nice and inviting. :)

  40. Ruth

    I do pay for the Rouge G because I love the formula and the colors. It just happens to be that the packaging is gorgeous too !

  41. bella

    I’m ashamed to admit yes!

  42. CeeBee

    Yes, I will pay extra for beautiful or luxurious packaging – but only if the actual product itself is also up to my expectations (ie, realy, really good!) – it’s nice to have pretty things to look at, enamelled or jewelled compacts, elegant gold and silver, sleek black or prettily patterned cases…
    I don’t own any Jill Stuart makeup but I have seen pictures of the packaging and it looks divine. Anna Sui is a favourite too – beautiful, decidedly feminine and very distinctive!

    I admit, I am kind of torn about Rouge G’s – I have 5 of them and while I do adore them for the lipstick formula, they are heavy, pick up fingerprints and have to be kept in their boxes so I can tell which colour is which (and otherwise they won’t stand up!) – I do wish they were slightly cheaper and have less extravagant cases… but, I still buy them.
    And yeah, totally lemming two of the new e/s quints as well!!! But for the shades! Though the luxe packaging is definitely a bonus!

  43. Jen Y.

    I’d probably agree. If the product appeals to me, I might still get it. But if I like the product, I wouldn’t mind pay a little more for the high quality packaging because it would make me value the product more and stick to it more and stop being attracted to other more-expensive-&-neat-packaging products.

  44. Miss Silver

    Yes, and no. Yes because if the packaging and the product inspires me enough to think of a certain look or concept, I’ll buy it. No if it’s just the packaging that looks super cool; sometimes, the regular looking packaging have awesome products!

  45. Kat

    Heck no. People don’t see the packaging, they see the effects of the product. Of course, a rather pretty package is always a nice little plus, but unless the packaging is obtrusive, I certainly am not partial to it.

  46. Packaging like this is a work of art. It is all part of the experience for someone who loves the ritual of using lipstick and applying it in public. To the twisting of the tube to reveal a perfect bullet of colour to the satisfying click of putting the lid back on. I’m not a lipstick person but I can totally understand why someone would pay for this!

  47. Ceriene

    For the most part, I can resist fancy packaging if the product inside doesn’t live up to the price. But yes, I agree with you in adoring the formula of the Rouge Gs, though while the packaging was a novelty at first, it’s just turned out to be way too heavy for me to carry around for touch ups, which is pretty troublesome.