As an editor of Retail Dive, it’s my job to keep tabs on every piece of retail-related news—the good, the bad, and the silly. From a whipped cream version of Russian roulette to the unboxing craze, here are some of the most interesting stories from around the Web.
In your face
So there’s this game called Pie Face, and it’s exactly what it sounds like. The game, described by Buzzfeed as “Russian roulette, but with whipped cream,” is selling out at almost every store, becoming a “top item” for the game’s manufacturer, Hasbro, this year. Perhaps some of its popularity can be attributed to this charming video, which went viral in April:
The chase for the truest black
There’s black—and then there’s black black. Racked’s Anna Wiener takes a look at the obsession behind finding the truest shade of black that has consumed designers and scientists alike.
“This quality of darkness is the destination: a depth of black so natural, yet so inconceivable to those who desire it, that the color can only be fabricated.”
While discouraging consumers from buying your clothing seems like the worst business model in retail ever, the BBC examines brands that are doing just that. From Patagonia to Universal Utility, companies are taking more eco-centric approaches to their marketing—and sometimes explicitly tell consumers to really think hard and long before buying their clothes.
The return of the shopgirl
The New York Times turns a critical eye on two new Oscar contenders, “Brooklyn” and “Carol,” which both include the “pleasing shopgirl” character type:
“The shopgirl-as-commodity seems an apt conceit for a consumption-driven society, with roots dating to the early 19th century, and the rise of the modern department store, a pleasure palace teeming with temptations, not least the lowly sales assistant.”
The business of unboxing
YouTube used to be the home of wannabe teenage pop stars and prank videos. Now, there’s a new king: unboxing videos, in which people record themselves unwrapping anything from a smartphone to Kinder eggs. According to Bloomberg, three of the top 10 most-viewed channels on YouTube were dedicated to unboxing last week.