The Retail Female: Famous Women on Food Package Designs

August 11, 2015


All of the recent excitement about the U.S. Mint adding a woman to the ten dollar bill got us thinking about famous women who have been featured on food packaging. Unlike the women being considered for our new treasury note, most of these women in packaging are fictional. But that doesn’t mean we don’t love seeing their faces every time we go shopping.

There are lots of ways you can deliver shelf impact to a consumer overwhelmed with choices in the aisle. What some companies have found is that creating a brand “mascot” can help convey emotion and create a connection—humanize the brand. When done correctly, you can create a recognizable and rememberable (it’s actually a word, look it up!) package with a little human touch. Placement of women on food packaging is often, but not always, used to convey a message of a caretaker or motherly figure. Other common themes with retail packaging featuring women are innocence, purity, friendliness and stylish. Though really, the possibilities are endless.

Eye tracking software has helped determine that consumers look for visual stimuli when shopping for products. Effective packaging has the right colors, shape, information and recognizable branding – which is where faces come in. Putting a face to your brand is one way to be memorable and reinforce your message.

So, as the U.S. debates which incredible American woman should be on our next $10 bill, we remain vigilant to our focus on packaging. Let’s take a look at our eight favorite female retail packaging stars. Consider what message they are trying to present.

Mrs. Buttersworth

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 9.05.45 AM


Let’s come right out of the gate with this one. She is the best and most unique as the entire package is an homage to her. Plus, she was in this hilarious commercial.

Betty Crocker

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 9.06.06 AM


Betty Crocker isn’t a real person, but her tough-but-fair expression over the years has made real impact on their sales.

Land o’ Lakes Indian Maiden

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 9.06.21 AM


Try not to freak out when you realize she is holding a box with a picture of her holding a box. And on that box is a picture of her holding a box and so on and so on until you realize you understand Inception.

Little Debbie

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 9.06.33 AM


This little girl has been the face of snack cakes since 1959, but she doesn’t look a day over 10. Oh, and she is also a real person who is still involved in the company!

Swiss Miss

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 9.06.53 AM

via Jason Liebig

Her hot cocoa has warmed many children on cold winter days.

Sun Maid Raisin Lady

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 9.07.26 AM


This famous image was based on a real person, Lorraine Collett Petersen, who was asked to pose for this painting while she was drying her hair in her parents’ backyard. Laundry turned to grapes—couldn’t we all be so lucky!

If you want your retail packaging brand to be something your mother (imaginary or not) would be proud of, contact Ernest Packaging Solutions today. We’ll help you package your brand’s story from your doors to your consumers’ home shelves.