CVS Discourages Product Testing in Stores

Jacqueline Barba
Associate Editor, Path to Purchase Institute
Jacqueline Barba profile picture
CVS Pharmacy | Palm Desert, CA

CVS Pharmacy is discouraging in-store product trial as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The drugstore chain has removed all tester bottles of sunscreen, fragrances, cosmetics and other personal care items.

Some displays, such as a floorstand stocking Procter & Gamble Native deodorant, were outfitted with yellow signs communicating a plea: “For the safety of all, please do not open or test products.”

Other displays with built-in showcases for trial units and “try now” messaging remain empty, including an account-specific endcap display from Bayer's Coppertone intended to let shoppers compare two suncare products: a sport formula that "goes on clear as water" and the recently launched Glow SKU that shimmers.

In related suncare activity in stores, another account-specific endcap from Coppertone stocks a slew of additional SKUs and touts the sunscreen is "Proven to stop up to 97% UV." Nearby, a "Protect the fun" floorstand  stocks another lineup of suncare products, this time from Edgewell Personal Care's Hawaiian Tropic and Banana Boat.

NOTE: For more photos reflecting the evolving store conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic, visit and search "COVID-19 at Retail." Plus Path to Purchase Institute members have access to more than 3,600 images and 500 articles of marketing and merchandising activity at CVS Pharmacy as well as a full Retailer Profile outlining the chain’s operations and strategies.