Slim-Fast Copies Skinnygirl Logo

By: Anny Mok

Bethenny Frankel is accusing Slim-Fast of copying her Skinnygirl logo without her permission. On her Facebook page, Bethenny posted:

“Thank you for all of your concern regarding the confusion with Slim-Fast using my logo without permission. They approached me to do a deal for Skinnygirl Daily nutrition bars, which I declined. I’m shocked to see they used it anyway. I will handle this situation immediately. Thank you for always being so protective of me.”

This was accompanied by an image of the Slim-Fast ad:

Image

 This is the Skinnygirl logo:

Image

Like the Skinnygirl logo, Slim-Fast features a black silhouette with bright red clothing and swirled ponytail. The only major difference is that Slim-Fast uses a curvier figure than the thin figure used by Skinnygirl. 

Skinnygirl has not revealed whether they will be filing a lawsuit against Slim-Fast. However, if they do, they appear to have a strong case. The similarities between both marks are quite substantial and very likely to confuse consumers. Courts look at several factors to determine likelihood of confusion. Some factors include: similarity of the marks, proximity of goods, evidence of confusion, types of goods, and defendant’s intent in selecting the mark. Both companies target the same group of customers – health conscious women. The companies sell similar products – diet food items. Someone shopping in the market for diet foods can easily mistake the Slim-Fast image with that of the Skinnygirl’s or assume that Skinnygirl endorsed Slim-Fast’s use of the mark. Many of Bethanny’s fans commented that they “automatically thought of SkinnyGirl” when they saw the ad.

Additionally, it appears as though Slim-Fast intended to capitalize on the goodwill of Skinnygirl. They could have easily used a different mark. Many companies use black silhouettes, but Slim-Fast specifically used bright red to contrast the black. Perhaps a different color would not make the similarities quite as obvious. They could have used a different hairstyle, but they specifically selected a swirling ponytail.

Based on the aforementioned factors, the likelihood of confusion is overwhelming. If Skinnygirl does bring a trademark infringement suit against Slim-Fast, they are very likely to succeed.

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