Diehard fans of Taco Bell have already shown their propensity to drape themselves in branded swag, from Forever 21 swimsuits to fire sauce-inspired board shorts.
That fair-weather merch is packed away, though, along with the “7-layer burrito baby bunting” that some people wrapped their infants in for Halloween (you know who you are).
It’s time for the Live Más devotees to replenish their promotional gear, and the Southern California-based chain is more than happy to oblige with the return of its online holiday shop filled with products like pajamas, hoodies, tree ornaments and snow globes.
The sale, with an undisclosed amount of goods likely to be snapped up quickly, started today.
There are only a few new offerings this year, including a larger “burrito wrap” blanket and a “Fire!” version of the popular sauce packet pillow. The collection is, for the most part, a re-do of last season’s apparel and accessories, including coffee mugs, greeting cards and sweatshirts.
The hero items are still the $80 hot sauce-inspired jumpsuits, a collaboration with Tipsy Elves that sold out within days last year. There are three styles, based on mild, hot and fire condiments, with “spicy” messages on the back.
There’s a handy guide on TacoBellTacoShop.com that lists the “under $30” choices like a knit scarf, an enamel pin set, t-shirts and tumblers for those who are ticking off their gift-giving list or stuffing their own stocking.
Brands, particularly fast-food chains, have been peddling stylish apparel and novelty items for several years, and consumers have eaten it up. Among the best-sellers: Big Mac onesies and World Famous Fries jogging suits from McDonald’s, KFC bucket hats, Auntie Anne’s fanny packs and IHOP’s cozy pajamas and socks.
Dunkin’ just dropped three limited-edition candles that smell like coffee and old-fashioned donuts, and Taco Bell made its “Friendsgiving” sweaters available again this year.
The trend still seems to be fairly viable, from a bottom-line and brand-building perspective, even though McDonald’s took a swipe at the whole category just months ago. The company created a faux fashion line called “Schnuggs” (named for its spicy chicken nuggets in the U.K.) and put the fictional logo-wear at the heart of a snarky ad campaign from Leo Burnett London.
That probably qualifies more like a winking bit of self-awareness than an actual backlash. Ditto for Dunkin’, which spoofed the trend last fall with fake fashions like “Cappu-chinos” and “Americano-veralls” to hype its espressos.