Sales of Abercrombie's infamous cologne are soaring after the company stopped dousing customers in the scent and rolled out a more inclusive ad campaign

Abercrombie & Fitch, YouTubeSales of Abercrombie’s Fierce cologne are soaring after a rebrand. The bottles bear the image of a shirtless model.

Abercrombie & Fitch’s rebranding of its signature cologne seems to be paying off.

In a call with analysts on Wednesday, after reporting first-quarter earnings results, Abercrombie CEO Fran Horowitz said that sales of its Fierce cologne were the best they have been for the past five years. Abercrombie relaunched Fierce at the beginning of the year.

In the early to mid-2000s, Fierce cologne was sprayed throughout the day by models or sales assistants at Abercrombie stores. It was reportedly even blown through the stores’ air-conditioning system, meaning that its stores and even large parts of the surrounding streets or malls were often also polluted with the smell.


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Abercrombie is relaunching its pungent cologne, which haunted shoppers for years after it was sprayed incessantly in stores, with a new inclusive ad campaign

For some teens of the 2000s, one whiff will transport you right back to Abercrombie’s dimly lit stores with booming music and shirtless models. It’s an image that Horowitz has been working hard to shake off since she took the reins in February 2017.

But Fierce’s new look – with a new bottle and a more inclusive ad campaign to appeal to today’s teen and millennial shoppers – seems to be working, even if the scent itself has stayed exactly the same.

Its new ad campaign, #FaceYourFierce, is intended to explore “the modern notion of what it means to be fierce through a sensitive, diverse and inclusive lens,” the company said at the time of the relaunch.

Abercrombie enlisted a new set of faces to promote the product, including mental health advocates, a group of Malibu surfers who volunteered as firefighters during the recent California wildfires, and LGBTQ+ activists.

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