Luxury product packaging: an incredible parallel market

Written by Bilal Munsif

Vuitton paper bags that sell for a few euros, empty Hermès boxes for a few tens of euros, and boxes of watch brands without their precious watch for several hundred dollars. Classified sites are full of this type of offer. How to explain that a priori innocuous objects find takers? Where does their value come from? This article explains the role of packaging in the shopping experience and analyzes why some are willing to pay thousands of dollars for a watch box or cardboard packaging. The video below, in which a luxury watch dealer explains that he was offered $20,000 for a Pate Philippe cardboard box, sets the tone.


  • Packaging is an integral part of the customer experience
  • Objects that allow you to set foot in the world of luxury
  • Product value is higher with packaging
  • Objects in the met averse: the next field of conquest for luxury brands?
  • Conclusion

An integral part of the customer experience

For starters, you need to look at packaging from a customer experience perspective. Packaging is an integral part of the customer experience. He must prolong the excitement of the customer who, once returned home, will unpack his product. It must also magnify the container. As such, it must borrow the same codes of luxury as the product itself.

Luxury brands use several strategies to convey their values ​​through hire ghostwriters. In doing so, they also make customers want to keep the containers.


The preciousness of the packaging is highlighted in the brand’s communication, as for example at Vuitton during its “Holiday 2020” campaign where actress Alicia Vikander hugs a Vuitton box. As can be seen in the photo opposite, it is the packaging that is the star of this advertisement, the only other clearly visible code being the sleeve monogram.


Packaging is sometimes made from high-end, even noble materials. Watch brands are used to this type of strategy. Pate Philippe delivers its watches in precious wood cases (see video below), and Brogue has custom-made cases made for its most precious models.


To make packaging truly unique, what better than to personalize it to the customer’s tastes? Guerin offers a wide range of personalization options for the fragrances in its lard ET la Maître range. The customer can thus have a message engraved on his bottle, choose the cork, and change the cord around the cork as well as the color of the seal with the effigy of the bee.


Design is of course an essential component of packaging. To get out of the ordinary, some brands go very far. Blancpain, a luxury watch brand, went very far with the release of its model released for the 20th anniversary of the moon phase. An aluminum box, reproducing the relief of the ground of the moon, was thus created especially for this occasion.


The packaging can also be the place where the brand’s innovation is expressed. Sometimes this innovation also makes it possible to convey a message. Ruin art has thus launched eco-designed packaging which is part of its CSR policy.


Objects that allow you to set foot in the world of luxury

Since packaging is an integral part of the customer experience, it follows that the customer can “live” the luxury experience through it. The packaging, therefore, becomes desirable because it forms a whole with its contents (see also the section on value below).

This desirability is expressed in particular through hiring ghostwriters. It is no longer necessary to own the content to reflect the benefits of the brand on oneself. Showing off packaging from a luxury brand (who can know if it’s empty) is enough. With fiction ghostwriting, desirability comes financial compensation. This is how empty packaging ends up on sites like Vented, Vestiaries Collective, or eBay. Unboxing videos are probably no stranger to this phenomenon.

The most diverse items are therefore found on second-hand sites: empty boxes, dust bags, hangers, empty perfume bottles, shoe trees, and various and varied cases. As long as the brand or its logo appears there and is recognizable, there is a demand. At the top of these items, we find of course the Hermès boxes, and the watch boxes (some of which can reach more than 1000€).

A “study” made by the British magazine Money in April 2021 claimed to establish a ranking of the most expensive luxury packaging. The top of the ranking is occupied by hire ghostwriters. Rolex thus takes first place with an average value of £160. The presence of other objects in the ranking remains quite strange: a Louis Vuitton shoe box for £74, a Louboutin paper bag for £54, empty Chanel perfume bottle for £54. Apart from the watch boxes, we have not been able to confirm prices for other items.

The fact remains that these objects are sold on second-hand sites. Is it because they would transfer some of the brand magic? Or is there a more prosaic explanation? This is what we analyze in the next paragraph.

An object that does not have all the attributes of a new one has less value.

Product value is higher with packaging

Beyond the supposed properties of packaging as such, there is a more prosaic reason to explain the enthusiasm for packaging: the value of the whole. An object that does not have all the attributes of new is indeed less valuable. This is particularly the case in the second-hand watch sector.

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The evaluation tool of Chrono24, a global platform dedicated to hiring ghost writers, thus offers 4 levels of completeness:

  • the watch alone
  • with the box alone
  • with the papers
  • with box and papers (“full set”)

The price differences can be considerable, the mere presence of the papers being able to justify a difference of several thousand Euros. But why pay several thousand Euros for papers that will remain in a filing cabinet or a box that will sleep in a cellar?


Packaging is presented as a market in itself, attracting customers looking for luxury codes without being able to really afford them. As such, we observe that packaging of all kinds is sold on second-hand sites. We could not confirm most of the prices announced by Money magazine. With the exception of watch boxes, the prices of cardboard boxes, dust bags, and other hangers were much lower than advertised.

To understand this market, it is essential to understand the role of packaging. First of all, it is an integral part of the customer experience. As such, it transmits the codes of the brand. Then, its presence makes it possible to symbolically reproduce the moment of purchase, that is to say, the moment when the new object first passed into the hands of the consumer of hire ghostwriters. The packaging can therefore certainly be appreciated “alone”, but the market is undoubtedly also driven by consumers who seek to bring together all the elements that bear witness to this “birth”. This desirability of the packaging (and of all the other objects accompanying it) is particularly significant in the luxury watch market. The difference between a single watch and a “full set” can reach several thousand euros for certain models.

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About the author

Bilal Munsif

Hi, I'm Bilal, a technology expert with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. I am passionate about exploring the latest trends and advancements in the tech industry and have dedicated my career to staying up to date with the latest developments.

I have extensive experience in the field, having worked on numerous projects ranging from developing software applications to managing large-scale IT infrastructure. This has given me a unique perspective on the challenges faced by individuals and organizations in today's ever-evolving technological landscape.

I have a particular interest in emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, and the Internet of Things. I enjoy breaking down complex concepts into easy-to-understand ideas, making technology accessible to everyone. As an author for this technology website, I am committed to providing our readers with the latest news, insights, and opinions on all things tech.

My dedication to staying up to date with the latest tech advancements ensures that our readers are always informed and engaged. I believe that technology has the power to transform our lives, and I'm excited to be a part of the conversation that helps us understand and harness that power.

When I'm not working in the tech industry, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, exploring new places, and staying active. I'm an avid reader and always interested in the latest tech trends and advancements, which I believe can help shape our future.