Custom Fonts & Icons

An Exclusive Font for the Labello Brand

A Custom font for the Labello brand
Original Labello lipstick

Launched in 1909, Labello lip balm, a classic of the German Beiersdorf AG, came onto the market two years before the famous Nivea cream. Its innovative tin sliding box was a sensation and became the standard for lipsticks in the years to come. Starting 1973, the twist-off stick received the Nivea blue colouring by which it is recognised all over the globe today.

Screenshot of labello website
Currently the Labello brand cosmos offers a wide range of products from basic care to color, shimmer and flavoured lipsticks, lip scrubs and crayons.

Brand Font in Bauhaus Style

As part of the long-standing collaboration with Beiersdorf AG, Juliasys was commissioned to develop a typeface based on the Labello logo. The logotype, designed in 1973, was inspired by the geometric typefaces of the 1920ies, in particular the universal typeface by Bauhaus artist Herbert Bayer. The task was to derive a visually strong and harmonious character set from the six letters of the word mark.

character set of Universal Typeface
Upper and lower case letters combined as one set of characters: the universal typeface by Herbert Bayer,1926. (Image: Wikipedia)
Specimen of Herbert Bayer’s Universal Typeface
Specimen of Herbert Bayer's typeface: “g and k are still to be considered as unfinished.”(Image: Wikipedia)

From Briefing to Final Typeface

As in similar projects with a historical background, some fundamental questions had to be answered: How much do the original characters have to be changed in order to achieve a harmonious and legible alphabet? Do we include upper and lower case letters? Which languages should be supported? In what surroundings will the font be used later?

Labello font sample

The letters of geometrically structured fonts tend have a high degree of self-similarity – see the classics Futura, Avant Garde and Kabel: How do we attain uniqueness of the letterforms in spite of this, and high legibility?

Labello logo and font comparison
Logotype letters vs typeface

Critical glyphs in the Labello logo are for example the a, which can easily be confused with the o, the closed e and somewhat heavy-handed junctions and curves, for example in the capital letter L. In logo design, such peculiarities are almost desirable because they add to the character of the brand, whereas in a font eccentric glyphs harm legibility.

Sample text set in Labello font

Labello Typeface – Ready for the Future

The Labello project was carried out in close cooperation with the Beiersdorf Brand Management Team, and the result of the work is a typeface remaining true to its origins. At the same time it fits seamlessly into the visual style of the brand and has very good readability – both on screen and in print. Recently expanded, the Labello font covers all Western and Central European languages.

Labello font sample in Czech
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