Kate Somerville, packaging genius

We’ve already talked about Kate Somerville’s range of moisturizers, and I might have mentioned in passing how utterly brilliant her packaging is. Of course you would never buy skincare just for the packaging, but once you experience Kate’s jars, you’ll be mad at your other skincare for not being packaged the same way.
Kate Somerville
People sometimes dislike jars because your product is exposed to air, and because you have to dip a finger or a utensil into the product. Each of Kate’s jars has a pump-top — no “dipping wand” required, and no air exposure.

You could stop here. You could say “pump top! That is so frickin’ smart!” But for the engineers, I’d like to explain how this simple-yet-brilliant machine works.
Kate Somerville
In the middle of the pump top is a short tube, or straw. The top of the straw is like a little periscope, which is where the cream comes out.
Kate Somerville
Here is the bottom side of the pump. You can see that the “straw” extends down into the cream. When you press down on the pump, you decrease the volume of the jar (creating higher pressure inside). That pushes the cream up the straw and out through the top.
Kate Somerville
Now actually, there’s a jar within the jar. That white jar (the inner jar) is the reservoir that holds the product. And at the bottom of that jar (below the product, where we can’t see it), there’s a sliding base. Each time you pump, a little bit of cream is pulled out of the jar, meaning the amount of cream in the jar is a little bit less, and the base slides a little higher — until the jar is empty.

The sliding base isn’t pushing the cream up, it’s just acting as a movable floor.
Kate Somerville
This is an empty jar, so you can see the base has reached the top (the pump).
Kate Somerville
And the amount of product left between the sliding base and the pump is literally one application (much less waste than many other designs).
Kate Somerville
Pretty awesome, right?

For individual help deciding which Kate Somerville products are best for you, I definitely recommend calling or visiting my wonderful associate Sonya (at Neiman Marcus Northpark, 214-363-8311). Even if you’re not in Dallas, she’ll set you up with samples to try-before-you-buy.

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20 Responses to “Kate Somerville, packaging genius”

  • Gretchen says:

    As an engineer, thank you for the explanation!! And now I’m lemming the moisturizer just for the packaging…

  • Hali says:

    I finally took up Sonya’s generous offer for a cross country consult today (I live in Oregon!) and I can’t wait to get the samples she selected for my skin type. The one thing that has REALLY been holding me back from trying this line for so long is because there are no counters in my area, and no one to talk to about choosing the right products for me. She is really is amazing! Thanks Sonya for offering, and thank you for hooking up your readers with her : )

  • Kelly says:

    Actually, mark. came up with this packaging a few years ago for their moisturizers :)

  • di says:

    Lisa Hoffman uses packaging like that for several products, too.

  • pia says:

    topical anesthetics (used in dental offices) have come in this packaging for a couple of decades. really does keep things hygienic.

  • Haruka says:

    You can actually get empty jars, spray bottles, and pump bottles with identical mechanism in 100 yen stores (Japanese dollar stores).

  • Jules says:

    Dermadoctor does it too…

  • kat says:

    Yeah, like Di said, Lisa Hoffman uses this type of packaging for her body lotion and her hand lotion. It’s really awesome and innovative.

  • NeenaJ says:

    Olay does it too; one of my Regenerist moisturizers came in that packaging. Thanks for the detailed explanation!

  • Jean says:

    I’ve never tried Kate Somerville’s skincare products, but now my interest is piqued. Laneige (the Korean cosmetics brand) uses this type of packaging for their foundation.

  • Joey Chan says:

    the NARS efa cream thing is in the same packaging as well. I loved it!

  • Roberta says:

    I love the packaging for all of Kate Somerville’s products, almost everything is in an airless pump container. Right before I use the moisturize I just wipe it down with a little alcohol just to clean off any residue from the previous time I used it. You could probably get away with out doing that but I prefer to keep everything as sanitary as possible.

  • Hali says:

    That is a good idea! My mom buys the Clinique dramatically different moisturizer in the small small tubes because she thinks it’s more sanitary. Makes sense! Maybe I ought to send her Kate Somerville’s way…

  • Diane Bufter says:

    The KS Oil-free moisturizer is HG for me. I am amazed by the packaging.

  • Jane Anstee says:

    Hi Karla, the packaging looks good but there’s nothing new about it. Ren have been using this type of “vacuum” packaging for years; it really does work to keep the product fresh and uncontaminated. I really don’t know why all companies don’t use this type of packaging!

  • Luka says:

    Is there anywhere in the US to buy empty jars like this?

  • KarlaSugar says:

    Omg, Hakura, I wish they sold them in the U.S.! I would transfer ALL my skincare into jars like these.

  • Lyn says:

    Very cool! I also love REN’s packaging – their products are inside a vacuum tight bag within the pump container; as less product is left, the bag collapses: voila, no waste.

  • Sarah S. says:

    I already love Exfolikate for Acne, but I reallllly appreciate ingenious packaging like this!

  • nancy says:

    are these containers recyclable?

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