Well designed strategies and well strategized design

Sharpie : Sustainable Redesign



Case Study: Sharpie

The project includes a thorough life cycle analysis of Sharpie markers. The team has identified the ink as one of the biggest contributor to hazardous wastes. The challenge was to develop a new strategy for the company for a more sustainable future.


To come up with new alternative packaging, user experience, and company strategy for a sustainable future


Brand strategy, trend forecasting, design research, marketing, product concept

Team Members

Kristin Rivas, Charlotte Dimopoulos


Focus Breakdown

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3 Main Problems

Through research the team discovered the three main problems of Sharpie after running a life cycle analysis 

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1. Marker Body

Anatomy and breakdown of the Sharpie we investigated in

2. In the Ink

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3. Sourcing

The team created scenario maps globally and nationally regarding its sourcing as well as transportations

4. Impacts

Some environmental and social impacts pulled from transportation

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Environmental Impacts

Social Impacts

5. For Environment?

The company's efforts in creating positive influences to the Earth as well as the people socially

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The plastic barrel of a marker is ‘technically’ recyclable, but you must remove the toxic ink cartridge and felt applicator point first.

Design Solution

Objective: Shift and Educate Consumer Behavior

The team decided to encourage a more material- efficient system by redesigning the markers, making them the key to a more sustainable life-cycle.

The inks bodies are now transparent and interchangeable, producing a more personal user experience while raising awareness to ink usage

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Future Takeaways

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