Coca-Cola inspires DIY upcycling among Asian consumers with the “2nd Lives” caps kit

Coca-Cola wants to make use of every empty bottle with a new upcycling campaign developed by Ogilvy & Mather China. The idea of the “2nd Lives” effort is to show that used plastic bottles can do better than being another piece of trash—with a simple design twist, they can be turned into quite useful items.

In Vietnam, the brand has released a set of 16 screw-on caps in Coke’s signatured red color, offering consumers an opportunity to transform the used bottles into paintbrushes, toys, pepper mills, water squirters, bubble-makers, lanterns, pencil sharpeners, and many more. As part of the campaign, 40,000 free bottle caps have been given away to people who purchased the iconic drink in Vietnam.

Such a great initiative deserves a global rollout, but Coca-Cola decided to focus on Asian markets, addressing the problem of plastic pollution in the region. The campaign will arrive to Thailand and Indonesia later this year. It’s not the first time Coke lets consumers hack its bottle with a purpose in Colombia—recently, it revealed a “friendship-inspiring” specially designed bottle cap that allows to open a bottle only when attached to another cap.

“In Asia, traditionally people didn’t like throwing things away, and I’ve seen ingenious things people have made with boxes, jars and all sorts of stuff,” commented Graham Fink, chief creative officer of Ogilvy & Mather China, to Ad Age. “We’ve called it ‘hacking habits.’”