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20 : 01 : 23

SKYN creatively sidesteps censorship in its ad campaign, an AI robot cares for crops and Boomers prop up the US wine market.

How SKYN creatively sidestepped censorship in its ad campaign

Explore Uncensored Pleasures by SKYN, US

US ­– Sexual wellness brand SKYN has playfully eluded censorship in its latest campaign, which prompts people to explore pleasure and intimacy.

Created by the Sid Lee Paris agency, Explore Uncensored Pleasures is a series of videos shot in a lo-fi amateur style, staging couples sharing intimate moments. To steer clear of pornographic associations and to arouse curiosity, the graphic contents have been concealed with the help of blurred rectangles and hints about the product used by the couple.

This allows the brand to bypass censorship and intrigue the viewer, and showcases its products – condoms, lubes and sex toys – ‘in action’, where it usually wouldn’t be possible. ‘We wanted to leverage censorship into an opportunity to talk about intimacy and turn what might previously have stopped conversations taking place into something that drives curiosity,’ shared creative directors Céline and Clément Mornet-Landa.

SKYN’s depiction of unfiltered and multi-faceted sexuality aligns with our Unrefined Intimacy design direction, where we explore raw, inclusive and confrontational new narratives around sex and pleasure.

Strategic opportunity

SKYN’s campaign shows how brands can employ playfulness to convey their message despite censorship, but also amplify the impact and use this limitation to their advantage

SentiV is a robot built to take care of farms

SentiV by Meropy, France SentiV by Meropy, France
SentiV by Meropy, France SentiV by Meropy, France

France – Agtech start-up Meropy has developed SentiV, a scouting robot designed to monitor crops. The lightweight spider-shaped robot is equipped with two 12-megapixel cameras that allow it to get close enough to photograph the top and bottom of plant foliage and provide details the human eye might miss.

Programmed to move autonomously through fields, SentiV can cover up to 50 acres of land in one day. Powered by a series of AI algorithms, the robot detects biological threats, determines the hydration and nutritional needs of plants, collects data and assesses the field to optimise farming practices. The robot’s width, height and mode of motion are adjustable, allowing it to adapt to growing crops and harvests without causing damage.

SentiV won an innovation award at CES 2023 and Meropy hopes the robot will improve the quality of life for farmers by saving fieldwork time and keeping them on top of environmental preservation and crop profitability. In Adaptive Appetites we highlighted how biotech has a huge role to play in helping food and drinks companies navigate supply chain fragility.

Strategic opportunity

Consumers expect biotech innovations in food production, and they want farming practices to be safe, efficient and sustainable

Estée Lauder’s voice-enabled make-up assistant for the visually impaired

US – Estée Lauder Companies has announced the launch of a tech-powered tool set to assist visually impaired people and ease the daily task of applying make-up.

Developed using machine learning, the voice-controlled make-up assistant app will be paired with smart mirror technology to assist the user at each step of the make-up routine, providing audio feedback and guidance to achieve even application of lipstick, eyeshadow and foundation.

This extra help will enable people with visual impairments to independently apply their make-up, as it signals to the user when something needs touching up or if the AI notices asymmetry. The Estée Lauder brand in the UK will be the first company to offer such technology, and the group hopes to expand the app’s capabilities to offer several make-up styles with tutorials.

More beauty brands are acknowledging the power of technology to drive inclusion and committing to advancing accessibility. We expect Adaptive Beauty solutions – such as Estée Lauder’s app or L’Oréal’s upcoming smart make-up tools – to open up this space to underserved communities.


Strategic opportunity

Inclusive design and tech-driven solutions that drive accessibility can open up possibilities for large uncatered for communities, unlocking new markets while driving positive change

Over-60s have largest positive impact on US wine sales

Sippers, UK Sippers, UK

US – As the US wine industry braces for recession, Silicon Valley Bank has released its annual report, which expects wine sales volumes to stabilise in 2023 at current levels.

The State of the US Wine Industry Report reveals that total consumption of wine showed a second consecutive year of negative growth. Although younger people are drinking alcohol, their share of wine sales has fallen. The only area of growth in wine-drinking is among older Americans, specifically the over-60s.

Although interest in premium wines continues to grow across all demographics, there is an opportunity for premium wine brands. In our Wine Branding insight piece we revealed that by challenging the stereotype of wine as a stuffy or complicated drink, premium and bespoke wine brands can appeal to younger generations. Conversely, younger drinkers get excited about wine when they can make wine culture their own. They look for exciting ingredients, fun bottles and sustainable wine-making practices.

Strategic opportunity

Wine still feels like a drink that belongs to older demographics. Younger drinkers need to be encouraged to build their own ideas and rituals around wine-drinking

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