12 Hidden Symbols That Can Be Found in Famous Logos

12 Hidden Symbols That Can Be Found in Famous Logos

Everywhere we go, we are exposed to logos and marketing in a multitude of ways. Businesses worldwide have developed clever logos and strategies to attract the eye, and gain our attention as we’re passing by. These tactics have been proven to be effective, as some of the more renowned and successful businesses in the world have thrived for years in doing so.

From food to clothing, to electronics, we have absorbed some of the more ingenious logos and symbols over the years. Even the simplest of logos have invoked our interest and have turned us into consistent customers for as long as we can remember. Companies worldwide have effectively captured our interest in astute ways. At first glance, we may just notice a logo or brand, but if you look closely, some of the most popular companies have embedded symbols within them that we may not have noticed initially.

From hidden images to meanings we may not have known, some of our very favourite companies have all mastered the art of marketing. Today, we have a look at some of those concealed symbols and meanings behind the brands we all know and love, and it may change the way you look at them, literally.

1. Nike
One of the more successful and noticeable brands of all time is none other than the Nike swoosh. It is said to resemble the wing of the Greek goddess Nike, who represented victory. The check symbol was crafted in 1971 by a graphic design student named Carolyn Davidson and was sold to the creator of the famous shoe brand for only $35 at the time. The booming success of the athletic shoe brand translated into a generous stock for her in the company, valued at over $1 million, along with a diamond and gold ring. She is now forever ‘tied to’ Nike for her major achievement.

2. Chanel
Known as one of the most successful fashion designers of all time, Coco Chanel is said to have designed the renowned logo of her company herself. Inspired while staying at Chateau Cremat in Nice, France, Coco had drawn the symbol based on the castle’s vaulted arches. The interlocking C’s come from both the initials of her name and the first two letters of the castle in which she drew this. The logo is now a symbol of elegance, wealth, and elitism, in the world of fashion.

3. NBC
Going through a number of logos over the broadcasting company’s history, NBC settled on the current design in 1956. Symbolizing the network’s colour programming, this logo has stuck ever since, and NBC is now one of the biggest and most successful television networks in history. If you look closely, you will see that the logo resembles a peacock, with each of the five colourful feathers representing the different divisions of NBC. The peacock’s head is also positioned to the right, which is associated with looking ahead and looking forward.

4. Beats Headphones
When it comes to audio products, there are few companies that have been as successful as BeatsByDre. Founded by music producer and rapper Dr. Dre, these headphones have been one of the leading in its industry in our generation. Seen on many athletes and celebrities, the Beats headphones are even wearing a pair of their own in its logo. If you look closely, the B in the red circle is positioned to look like a person wearing headphones; a cleverly hidden symbol that you may not have noticed at first glance.

5. McDonald’s
McDonald’s can arguably be dubbed as one of the most universally recognized logos in history. The bright, yellow logo is eye-capturing and can be easily noticed from a distance. Worldwide, the logo has become a staple in the food industry. Dating back to 1952, brothers Richard and Maurice McDonald planned to construct a new building to be the home of their hamburger restaurant. They wanted a new design, something that would be both efficient and eye-catching. After several interviews with architects, they presented an idea that involved two golden arches, which would be a memorable shape, and a visible one at that. The intent was to be noticed, and it has now become an icon of commercialism. A hidden symbol that has sparked some controversy, is the resemblance of upside-down female breasts, which is argued to have “Freudian applications to the subconscious mind of the consumer,” and were “great assets in marketing McDonald’s food”.

6. Baskin Robbins
Everybody enjoys good ice cream. Founded in California, the world’s leading chain of ice cream shops has long been favoured by many worldwide. The name originates from the two founders’ last names, Burt Baskin, and Irv Robbins. The logo features pink and blue letters B & R, and if you look closely, you’ll notice the number 31 embedded in between, which represents the 31 flavours you can choose from at Baskin Robbins. The number 31 also represents the days of the month and is meant to encourage exploring a new flavour for each day.

7. Tostitos
Tostitos are one of the leading tortilla chip and dip companies in the world. First introduced in 1979, the chip brand has featured a variety of shapes and accompanying dip flavours over the years. The logo itself features two people dipping a chip into salsa, which you can see in between the two T’s in the middle; a clever approach that represents the brand entirely.

8. FedEx
The leading American courier service has been around since 1971, delivering packages and pioneering the tracking system that is now used by other companies in this industry. The name is a syllabic abbreviation of Federal Express. The logo itself features a hidden arrow in between the E and X, which the designers aimed to act on the customers’ subconscious, and also represents the company’s efficiency in speed and trust in their services.  

9. Mitsubishi
Mitsubishi is an automotive manufacturer that originates from Japan. Yataro Iwasaki was the entrepreneur who started the company, and the logo features the coat of arms of his family. The coat of arms consists of three diamonds on top of each other, each representing reliability, integrity, and success. Paired with the colour red, which is said to symbolize confidence, the Mitsubishi Motors logo has become globally recognized and is one of the biggest Japanese automakers to this day.

10. Le Tour De France
Although it isn’t a food or clothing brand, Le Tour De France’s logo has long been recognized and is one of the top cycling competitions in the world. The competition has been around since 1903 and is participated in annually. If you look closely at the clever logo design, you’ll notice an image of a cyclist, with the R being the body of the athlete, and the sun in the logo acting as the bike’s wheel. This is an impressive and creative approach to the competition’s logo and definitely serves it well.

11. Goodwill
Founded in 1902, Goodwill has been a non-profit organization that caters to those who need work opportunities and skill development. They also provide a massive network of food donations and thrift stores with affordable clothing. Employees serve the needy and less fortunate and have helped thousands of people worldwide. Their logo embodies their positive outlook, with the G resembling a smiley, happy face that certainly stands out.

12. Hope For African Children Initiative
This is an effort created as a global movement for children, especially those in Africa who are orphaned and need treatment for their illnesses. Their mission of supporting African communities is evident in the organization’s logo, which is coloured in a golden yellow and orange, and features the continent map of Africa and a child looking up at their mother, simultaneously. This is an effective logo that represents the company’s vision, which is one of the leading initiatives towards the bettering of youth’s lives worldwide.


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