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EMAC 2020 Annual Conference

Getting products in good shape: How geometric and organic decorative patterns influence product gender impressions

Published: May 27, 2020


Manon Favier , University of Angers ; Jonathan Luffarelli, Montpellier Business School; Gaëlle Pantin-Sohier, université angers; Franck Celhay, Montpellier Business School


design; gender; communication


This working paper investigates the influence of decorative patterns as visual elements of package design on gender impressions. To study this effect, 2 between-participants experiments involving a total of 540 participants were conducted. The authors manipulated the decorative patterns of 6 different products perceived to be either slightly feminine (wine, chocolate, and gin) or slightly masculine (beer, rum, and vodka). The patterns were either geometric or organic. Results demonstrated that the decorative pattern affixed on the packages of products had a significant influence on product gender impressions. More specifically, geometric patterns conveyed stronger impressions of masculinity while organic patterns conveyed stronger impressions of femininity. This working paper contributes to the literature on the influence of package design on consumers’ impressions.