Everyday, our designers bring to life the brands (and dreams) of founders from all over the world. Anyone who’s started a business knows the rush of seeing their logo and branding—something that once was just an idea—in real life for the very first time. It’s a really special moment that we’re lucky enough to see on a daily basis.
Welcome to #99designed, where we’re sharing some of these amazing stories on our blog and Instagram.
After traveling overseas to India for the first time, London-based entrepreneur Sally Wynter sought to capture the sense of freedom and exploration she experienced in a bottle. The result was MUHU, a line of CBD-infused gin that incorporates flavors and ingredients from around the world.
There is a sense of mystery to MUHU because of the infusions. People are curious to know what the effect of CBD is in a drink, so it’s just like jumping on that plane and going on a journey.
MUHU may be one of the first CBD gins on the market, but what makes it truly stand out is its alignment with travel, spontaneity and well-being. Read on to learn how 99designs client Sally is shaking up the alcohol sector and building a holistic lifestyle brand around these unique values.
Creating a one-of-a-kind flavor profile
Being a proud Brit, Sally Wynter knows gin (as she points out, there’s not a village in the U.K. that doesn’t have a gin named after it!). However, she realized what was missing from the gin market was both experimentation and health-consciousness.
So Sally set out to create a line of infused spirits that offered something extra to the drinking experience while ditching the ingredients you don’t actually want in your gin, such as sugar, artificial colorings and sweeteners. CBD oil turned out to be Sally’s magic ingredient.
CBD has skyrocketed in popularity in recent years, going from a niche, controversial substance to a mainstream ingredient found in everything from body lotion to pet products. The New York Times went so far as to call it a “cure for the 21st century itself.”
I see [MUHU] as a challenger brand that’s shaking up the alcohol sector, where brands lack imagination and have failed to innovate.
The industry itself is also booming. The latest report compiled by leading cannabis researchers BDS Analytics and Arcview Market Research estimated that CBD sales in the U.S. will surpass $20 billion by 2024. By coupling CBD infusions with sugar-free flavoring, Sally nailed a recipe for success by tapping into wider consumer trends around wellness and healthier, more natural products.
Creating visual branding on a budget
MUHU’s visual branding needed to convey the values of travel, spontaneity and self-love that the brand was founded on. After being quoted up to £20,000 by agencies for just a single label design, Sally turned to 99designs to bring her ideas to life.
She started by putting out a call to designers for a label design for MUHU’s first product, a sweet hibiscus gin. After seeing the first submission from packaging designer SB.D, Sally knew this was the designer for all of MUHU’s packaging: “I thought [SB.D’s work] was truly innovative and I went with my gut.”
SB.D turned out to be a perfect match for MUHU’s brand; a Belgium-based designer, SB.D (also known as Samir Boudia) shares the passion for travel that MUHU’s brand was founded on. SB.D’s experience working with a global client base on 99designs helped them to create a unique design that incorporated design elements from around the world.
The resulting label design combines organic wave-like patterns with an island-inspired color palette to evoke the freedom and spontaneity of travel. Unlike most gin brands, which tend to favor neutral color palettes and vintage-inspired designs, MUHU stands out with metallic green accents and bold, blocky typography.
MUHU’s got attitude! It completely rebels against every other gin brand on the marketplace at the moment.
After completing her label designs, Sally obtained trademarks, polished her website and developed product samples. When all was said and done, Sally launched MUHU for £1,300 total.
What’s next for MUHU
Thanks to both the uniqueness of her product and being ahead of the curve on two of the year’s biggest health and wellness industry trends, Sally has been able to secure instant hype about MUHU without having to invest too heavily in marketing. The downfall of being part of a trending industry? “Not everyone is ready for CBD and some retailers and distributors aren’t yet ready to deal with CBD products,” she notes.
So, what’s next for MUHU? Sally plans to continue to introduce new flavor varieties (lemongrass is up next!). Soon, she hopes to expand into ready-to-drink beverages and non-alcoholic spirits that continue to capitalize on the medical benefits of CBD while remaining sugar-free.
As the trend towards health-conscious drinking grows, there’s no doubt that MUHU will remain in a prime position as one of the first of its kind on the market.