Velveeta makes its mark on fans’ lips with its cheesy 14-karat gold drip lip cuff

Velveeta, the famed velvety smooth prepared cheese product, is ringing in the new year with new “drip” for their fans to don.

What’s “drip” you may ask? In the world of fashion, “drip” is slang for embodying both style and swagger. An individual who has “drip” is cool. They’re hot. They’re confident. And they’re who everyone wishes they could be. 

According to Velveeta, no one knows “drip” better than them. They are after all the creators behind the physical drip of their original cheese sauce and the “unapologetic drip that embodies living ‘La Dolce Velveeta.’” Velveeta’s latest “drip” comes in the form of a cheesy face jewelry. The brand is rolling out its 14-Karat gold Drip Lip Cuff, crafted in partnership with celebrity designer, George the Jeweler. Velveeta is inviting its fans to own the drip like never before by wearing it proudly.

“Velveeta has been best known for its cheesy goodness and melty drip that proudly graces fans’ lips, and for the last several years, our goal has been to breathe new life into this legacy brand through unique and unexpected collaborations and creations,” Stephanie Vance, Brand Manager for Velveeta, told Forbes. “We’re always looking for ways to insert ourselves into culture and trends, celebrate our fans, and give them more ways to love Velveeta — whether in food form, like the Veltini, symbolically with like Pinkies Out polish, and now fashionably with the Drip Lip Cuff.”

The lip cuff, Vance added, strives to “empower” its wearers to step out with “an unapologetic confidence that encourages you to live life by your own rules.” It also heightens the brand’s founding principle of “making outrageous pleasure a way of life.”

Velveeta’s latest initiative adds to a growing trend of major food brands joining forces with fashion to launch new merchandise, boost overall sales and spur hype. The trend itself proves to grow more outlandish as it continues to persevere. Last year, Pizza Hut, in partnership with Chain — the Los Angeles based pop-up culinary collective — released its limited-edition reversible Hut Hat. The reversible bucket hats touted Pizza Hut’s iconic red roof on one side and a checkered design with black, white and red on the other. A few months later, Panera introduced its chic BAGuette bag, which was essentially an elongated green purse that resembles a loaf of French bread. The bags initially sold out, then were restocked only to sell out again. They were so popular that several folks later resold them on eBay for anywhere between $200 to a whopping $3,290. 

In the wake of Velveeta’s Drip Lip Cuff, perhaps it’s a bit too far-fetched to conclude that food-and-fashion partnerships have gone too far. But they’re certainly breaking boundaries and challenging our thoughts on what certain brands are capable of creating. If you had asked me ten years ago about the possibility of a 14-Karat gold Drip Lip Cuff from a brand of cheese analogue, I would have laughed and surely said no. 

Velveeta’s lip cuff flaunts 14-Karat gold and is priced at a whopping $77, which is significantly more expensive than Velveeta’s signature cheese products. Practically speaking, would loyal consumers spend their $77 on buying a single lip cuff or 25 boxes of Velveeta’s Original Big Bowl Cheese & Shells (which is available for just $3 on Amazon)? I’d like to think it would be the latter.

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Velveeta’s lip cuff, in its essence, is gimmicky. But gimmicky products, as we’ve seen, have actually been quite clever. Such food-fashion products are rarely revered for their practicality but rather, their impracticality. Food fashion isn’t meant to be functional, it’s mainly meant to be shocking. There’s something incredibly alluring about rocking a limited-edition piece of jewelry or clothing and flaunting it on social media in exchange for several likes, clicks or views. It’s attention-grabbing. It’s enticing. And it encourages others to spend their money on the product in question.

Take for example fast food’s partnerships with high fashion in the past. Frito-Lay collaborated with international fashion house Balenciaga to debut a $1,500 clutch that resembles a crumpled, discarded bag of Lay’s potato chips. There’s also Jeremy Scott’s McDonald’s-inspired Moschino collection, complete with Golden Arches-decked handbags on plastic food trays. And there’s Charlotte Olympia’s and Kate Spade’s Chinese takeout box-inspired purses. None of these products are financially feasible, nor are they a necessity. Instead, they are made to elicit awe. In the same vein as fast food and cheap eats, such products provide us with instant gratification and a quick hit of pleasure.

In the age of social media, major food brands are finding new ways to boost hype in an effort to garner more consumers. It’s hard to say what Velveeta — or any other food brand — will come up with next. Whatever it is, it will certainly be anything but boring.

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