A Creative Redesign of Kellogg's Iconic 'Special K' Packaging

An American design classic, re-imagined.

California-based graphic designer Mun Joo Jane has re-imagined the classic packaging of Kellogg’s famous Special K cereal. Updating the famous old box to something more contemporary, eye-catching and useful, Mun Joo Jane believes that the cereal could be marketed towards a more high-end and modern consumer. A cardboard cylinder, with a removable cap/measuring cup and transparent side panel give off an almost futuristic aesthetic.

3 of the Best Innovative Packaging Designs

Kellogg’s isn’t really one of those brands you recall when thinking about great packaging designs, is it. But, somehow, they managed to pull off one of the best and more innovative designs we’ve seen lately with their K+. Or, more likely, Mun Joo Jane did.

Not surprisingly, the astonishing results came from a simple concept: rejecting stereotypes. Jane herself clearly states it in the project:

“The overview of this project was to come up with a cereal packaging design for adults. We are no longer kids and it is important that our cereal packaging reflects exactly that. The challenge of this project was to neglect the stereotypical cereal box design.”

Sometimes, a little rebelliousness is all that it takes.

Cereal Grows Up

LA-based graphic designer Mun Joo Jane has conceived two packaging concepts for cereal brand Kellogg's that break free from conventional formats commonly seen across the category. Steering away from aesthetics aimed at children, Jane's concept takes a more sophisticated, sleek approach.

The first design comprises is a cylindrical container featuring a transparent window. The top of the packaging is detachable and doubles as a measuring cup, allowing individuals to easily exercise portion control. The second concept is a traditional milk-carton-shaped box that states: 'I am not milk. I am cereal'. The streamlined, yet playful packaging is intended to maintain the fun, light-hearted factor associated with Kellogg's products.

It's Time to Start Designing Cereal for Adults

Concept from designer Mun Joo Jane imagines breakfast packaging for folks who eat at the big table

Cereals can generally be categorized into two types: the sugary stuff with cartoons on the box for children, and the boring—and healthy—bran and whole-grain variety for adults. Despite the more “adult” ingredients, the packaging tends to be equally saccharine. Jane tasked herself with rebranding the Special K cereal box because even though it is aimed at adults, the aesthetic—with its cartoonish capital K and bright colors—still feels a bit childish.

She also “had an urge to change this brand into a unisex design.”

Both used more modern and slick typography to look more interesting on the shelves than the typically unremarkable cereal box packaging.

Special K Packaging Reimagined

Cereal boxes don’t get much more classic than the one Special K comes in, having remained more or less the same in the six decades since the cereal first came out. So tinkering with a classic can be a pretty irresistible impulse for an artist, which is why graphic designer Mun Joo Jane took a stab at a much more modern and eye-catching box for the cereal.

Mun Joo Jane’s redesigned Special K box doesn’t really look like a cereal box at all – instead it’s a cardboard cylinder with a transparent plastic panel, and a cap that doubles as a measuring cup (a nice dovetail with the cereal’s health-and-fitness wheelhouse). As a cereal box redesign, it might be too radical for the average consumer to accept, but as a conceptual exercise it’s pretty cool to look at.