Liquid Death, e.l.f. Cosmetics Launch 'Corpse Paint' Campaign

Liquid Death, e.l.f. Cosmetics Launch 'Corpse Paint' Campaign
News by Roberto Orosa
Published: March 26, 2024

Liquid Death and e.l.f. Cosmetics are teaming up for an uncanny new set of make-up products, and it released an outright bizarre spot to promote it. 

The new one-minute "Corpse Paint" takes a satirical approach reminiscent of '90s toy commercials.

It starts with two teenagers, Piper and Addison, sitting in their bedroom manifesting their fictional goth hero "Glothar," who then magically comes to life.

The rest of the ad pokes fun at common '90s commercial tropes, complete with a charismatic narrator explaining the contents of the cask-shaped glam kit.

"Murder your eyes, lips, and face like your favorite celebrity," says the narrator. "Now you can look as dark on the outside as you are on the inside."

Glothar then tries on the eyeliner and compliments the two girls for their glammed-up goth looks. 

"Wow, this pen is so precise but the coverage is awesome too. It's just perfect," he says. 

The commercial takes a weird turn when Piper and Addison's mom Debra enters the room, offering the kids "vegan goat blood." In a surprising twist of fate, it is revealed that Glothar and Debra used to date, making the famed goth the father of Piper and Addison. 

"Dad?" Addison asks, as the spot cuts to a product shot. 

Andy Pearson, Liquid Death's vice president of creative, shared the ideation process behind the unique ad. 

“We started with this bizarre premise – this is a world where everybody listens to black metal like it’s another boy band," he explained.

"And then we treated that premise very normally."

Goth Is the Way to Go

The latest spot comes after the two brands unveiled the Corpse Paint makeup kit, inspired by goth subculture. 

It features a range of products including Kiss of Death lipstick, Dead Set mist, and Eye Die shadow, all packaged in a distinctive "keepsake coffin." Priced at $34, this limited edition set will be available exclusively on the e.l.f. website.

The collaboration was born out of a year-long discussion between the brands, driven by e.l.f. CMO Kory Marchisotto's admiration for Liquid Death's bold and unconventional marketing approach.

The CMO views Liquid Death as "the ultimate disruptor" and saw the collaboration as a strategic fit for e.l.f., especially following its recent national Super Bowl ad.

"It’s important for us to find the path that others are afraid to take or don’t imagine or stretch their minds far enough to cook up this kind of badass crazy stuff."

"Any collaboration has to work organically, seamlessly, and fluidly – there was never a second of forcing this," Marchisotto told AdWeek.

Pearson double-downed on the sentiment and emphasized the shared mission-driven approach of both brands.

Despite their seemingly different backgrounds, both e.l.f. and Liquid Death have strong social media presence and a history of successful brand collaborations.

A Hit Among Fans

The promotion kicked off with cryptic social media teasers, generating immediate excitement among fans of the cosmetics brand.

Nearly 33,000 comments flooded e.l.f.'s Instagram within hours of the initial announcement, with many expressing enthusiasm for what they dubbed "the collab of the year."

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A post shared by e.l.f. Cosmetics and Skincare (@elfcosmetics)

"The insight is that our community wants to have fun and be entertained," Marchisotto shared.

"We have an enormous amount of respect for people’s time, and if they’re hanging out with us, we want to make sure we’re providing something creative and clever."

Influencers and celebrities are expected to participate in the rollout, offering "get ready with me" posts to showcase the Corpse Paint kit. 

"We have an enormous amount of respect for people’s time, and if they’re hanging out with us, we want to make sure we’re providing something creative and clever," Marchisotto concluded.

Coinbase recently won an auction to place ads on 500,000 Liquid Death boxes.
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