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Colonel Sanders, Beauty Icon?

Perspectives, Platform Stories / by Bridget Wagar on December 16, 2021

Colonel Sanders, Beauty Icon?

KFC recently announced that it was putting its advertising account up for review, and the debate is on whether or not brand icon Colonel Sanders will survive when a new agency takes the creative helm.


But based upon our analysis, the brand may want to consider a new role for the Colonel – as a beauty icon.


Surprisingly, those who have an affinity for KFC on social media are also obsessed with beauty and wellness. According to our platform, KFC fans are nearly 2.5x more likely to buy beauty and wellness brands. This is even true for fans of general fast food and fast casual joints.


KFC Beauty Blog 1


But does this go for all KFC fans? Let’s dive a little deeper into this new consumer segment. We decided to look at KFC fans from each region of the US and found these interesting results…


KFC Beauty Blog 2


Looking at these different regions, we can see the common thread: KFC fans love cosmetics, and this brand might benefit from beauty collaborations.


Chips, salsa... & lip gloss?


Earlier this year, Chipotle partnered with e.l.f. Cosmetics to create a four-product beauty line, and it sold out in just 11 minutes


ELF Chipotle Makeup

(Source: Food & Wine, 2021)


Chipotle’s VP of Digital Marketing, Tressie Lieberman, said: “We’re always looking for opportunities to lead culture and make authentic connections with Gen Z alongside brands that share similar values.”


We found that Chiptole fans are 1.5 times more likely to engage with beauty and wellness and are nearly twice as likely to be Cosmetics Connoisseurs.


KFC Beauty Blog 3


KFC: Kentucky Fried Cosmetics?


Twenty-five percent of KFC’s audience is Gen Z; connecting with beauty brands and influencers could engage more of this generation. We looked at the audience of KFC Cosmetics Connoisseurs and found that they have high affinities for beauty brands Revlon, Maybelline New York, and NYX Cosmetics. Maybe KFC should consider partnering with one of these beauty brands to create their own cosmetics line.


KFC Beauty Blog 4


Brand collaborations have the power to engage younger audiences and build brand loyalty. One of my favorite foods at Chipotle is their guacamole (duh) — and their avocado-shaped beauty sponge immediately caught my attention…


Avocado Beauty Sponge

(Source: Seventeen, 2021)


Similar to Chipotle, every KFC fan has their menu favorites. From their famous bowls to their crispy chicken sandwich to their creamy mashed potatoes and gravy. I think KFC cosmetics fans would love to see a branded makeup line filled with popular KFC foods: a mac and cheese highlighter, a gravy-colored contour stick, the list goes on. The products don’t sound incredibly appetizing... but they will definitely make headlines. So what do you think Colonel Sanders, want to be the next Kylie Jenner?


Bridget-headshotBridget is the Marketing Coordinator at Helixa, where she manages social media, video content, and champions company culture. In her free time, she loves listening to musical theatre podcasts, cooking vegan food, and spending way too much time on TikTok.