Lyft is rebranding itself and getting rid of its signature fuzzy pink mustache, Wired reports.
Drivers typically keep a fuzzy, pink mustache on the front grill of their car or on their car’s dashboard to indicate that they’re a Lyft driver.
In its place, each Lyft driver will be given a “glowstache” — a plastic mustache the size of a banana that’s attached to the driver’s dashboard with magnets. At night, it glows.
According to Wired, the company is sending out glowstaches to drivers starting at the end of January.
Ammunition, the company that designed Beats by Dre headphones, started to help Lyft think of a way to rebrand its mustache last year.
“When you see it now, you probably think it seems obvious. But it’s actually challenging from a design perspective.” Robert Brunner, Ammunition’s founder, told Wired. “Trying to productize an identity — turning any identity into an object that has function is not an easy thing to do. And in a way, we were maturing the icon, but we didn’t want to mature it. So that’s real tricky.”
For a month or two, there were signs that Lyft was undergoing a bit of a shift in its marketing. Citing a surge in growth, the company introduced a new email campaign to customers in November. The emails intended to answer guests’ questions about the service.
For instance, Lyft ditched its typical protocol, which asked riders to fist-bump their drivers upon entry and sit in the passenger seat, to let riders choose how they want to ride. The new email campaign tells customers that if they want to take a seat in the back of their Lyft car or forgo the fist-bump, that’s fine, too.
Here’s what that email campaign looks like:
Lyft’s creative director Jesse McMillin, who was hired last year, was also tasked to help come up with the redesign. He knows how polarising Lyft’s fuzzy, pink mustache was.
“People were either like, ‘I love it,’ or ‘I never want to get in a car like that,'” he told Wired.
Uber’s co-founder and president John Zimmer told Wired it was important that the new glowstache be convenient. The novelty of the original mustaches — known as “carstaches” — wore off after taking them off and reattaching them every time they started or stopped a driving shift.
In addition, the original, fuzzy mustaches would get matted or windblown, McMillin says.
Zimmer thinks the new version of the Lyft mustache is “more modern, more fresh, and also more acceptable for everyone.”
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