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  • Writer's pictureTodd

Scent Trademarks

Examples of non-traditional trademarks include scent, color, shape, and sounds.

A scent trademark registered for Play-Doh on May 15, 2018: “The mark is a scent of a

sweet, slightly musky, vanilla fragrance, with slight overtones of cherry, combined with the smell of a salted, wheat-based dough.”

Crayola is trying to register “A proprietary scent reminiscent of a slightly earthy soap with pungent, leather-like clay undertones” for crayons. The Examining Attorney said it is a functional design because it’s a naturally occurring scent, that it fails to function as a mark, and they need to remove the “proprietary language…” The application is still pending.

On May 4, 2021, Andrew Vaughn obtained a trademark registration for “the scent of fresh, sweet oranges” for “shoe polish; leather polishes; leather preserving polishes; leather creams, namely, creams for leather cleaning and preservation” in International Class 3.

On March 24, 2020, Bushness Inc. obtained a trademark registration for the “scent of banana and evergreen, with a hint of ammonium and kerosene. For “Gun-cleaning preparations for guns and gun parts” in international class 3. The ammonium and kerosene part needed a disclaimer.

There are also trademark registrations for coconut scented sandals, chocolate scented retail stores, and bubble gum scented flip flops.

On December 17, 2019, the “vanilla scent contained within wax for the manufacture of CAD/CAM milled dental wax patterns” for modeling wax for dental purposes was “scent” to trademark purgatory when it was registered on the Supplemental Register.

Some scent marks have lapsed. The ones I’m disappointed about are apple cider, peppermint, vanilla scent, peach, lavender, grapefruit office supplies, namely, file folders, hanging folders, paper expanding files. SHS International’s registration for “the scent of pina colada” for musical instruments, namely ukuleles, has also lapsed.

What other creative source-identifying uses of scent can you think of for your business?

Please note that the information contained in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and not as specific legal advice. The facts of your situation may differ from this general information. It is not intended to and does not in any way establish an attorney-client relationship.

If you wish to schedule a consultation, let’s work together on your trademark needs


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