Tuesday, October 16, 2012


"Don't just volumize, millionize your lashes with our New mascara: Volume Million Lashes." So goes the new ad campaign slogan from L'Oreal Paris. It's always a pleasure to encounter new words in advertising (see my post on the nescafe droolisimo ads) and I am fond of strange marketing.

The word millionize is nice. It plays into an idea of richness, implying perhaps that this product will make one look like (they have) a million bucks, as well as tapping into the general desire for thick, full lashes. Science, however, shows that people have 100-150 eyelashes. Clearly multiplying this by ten thousand would be a monstrous disaster.


I am a believer that words are words as long as they communicate meaning. Millionize does this. I realize reading the slogan that volumize is a new coinage as well, perhaps part of an ize verbing trend, and that it has successfully infiltrated English as an accepted word. Perhaps one day millionize will be common too and won't make one bat an eyelash.

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