Starbucks has a new, over-the-top take on the Unicorn Frappuccino designed to take over Instagram (SBUX)


  • Starbucks is debuting a new, over-the-top Frappuccino — called the Crystal Ball Frappuccino — on Thursday, according to baristas. 
  • The turquoise, peach-flavored Frappuccino is engineered for Instagram and will be on the menu for less than a week. 
  • The Crystal Ball Frappuccino follows in the footsteps of the instantly viral Unicorn Frappuccino as Starbucks attempts to reinvent its Frappuccino strategy after a rough 2017. 


Starbucks baristas are buzzing about a new beverage that seems engineered to replicate the success of the Unicorn Frappuccino. 

The coffee giant is rolling out a new, super-limited Frappuccino — called the Crystal Ball Frappuccino — this week.

The Crystal Ball Frappuccino will debut on Thursday, March 22, according to local Starbucks shops and workers. It will will remain on the menu for four days — or until supplies run out. 

The Crystal Ball Frappuccino is an alluring marbled turquoise, ideal for Instagram. The cream-based Frappuccino uses peach flavors and is topped with whipped cream and rock candy crystals. 

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Coming this Thursday... 🔮

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A Starbucks spokesperson told Business Insider that the company did not have any details to share on new beverage launches at this time. 

However, according to baristas, the Crystal Ball Frappuccino seems set to follow the blueprint of the Unicorn Frappuccino. starbucksTwitter

In April 2017, Starbucks had a whirlwind success with the Unicorn Frappuccino, a sweet, color-changing drink that quickly went viral on Instagram. Like the Unicorn Frappuccino and other follow-up drinks, such as the Zombie Frappuccino, the Crystal Ball Frappuccino is designed to be aesthetically pleasing and will only be on menus for less than a week. 

Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccinos
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Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccinos
it tastes like a pink nightmare
Sweet dream or a beautiful nightmare? 🦄 🌈💕✨ #unicornfrappuccino #starbucks
Yup I did it! Grande Unicorn @Starbucks. Quite tasty.
🦄 Unicorn Frappacino - cute but nasty.. like me 😈 (I took one sip & tossed it 🤢) #unicornfrappuccino
This is more magical than the Nimbus 2000 #unicornfrappuccino #Delish #DamnThatsDelish @starbucks
Sometimes, you just gotta let your #basicwhitegirl flag fly! 🦄
Self proclaimed unicorn queen here to tell u that unicorn fraps exist and the world is a more beautiful place 🦄✨ I rly like it!! It's like sour mango candy in a straw✨✨ if u don't like sour tho u will haaaaate it 😨 #unicornfrappuccino
I just figured it was an internet joke, but I guess it's real. Might actually be my favourite frappuccino... #unicornfrappuccino #yegstarbucks
"Mom, I believe in the drink, and I see the drink." Sure, lets sugar up before taking a road trip. 😎. I've been informed it's sweet and sour like unicorn farts. Yummy. #unicornfrappuccino #starbucks #momlife #fluff #sugarhigh
Soooo good! 🦄💎🦄💎 #unicornfrappuccino

Despite the success of the Unicorn Frappuccino, Starbucks' Frappuccino sales have slumped over the past two years. In late January, Starbucks announced plans to end its popular Frappuccino Happy Hour deal after the promotion failed to drive sales in summer 2017. 

"It really hasn't been worth it over the last two years and wouldn't be worth it this year," Starbucks CFO Scott Maw said of the promotion at a JPMorgan forum earlier in March. 

"What we are trying to do this year is sort of reinvent Happy Hour," Maw continued. Starbucks plans to use digital assets — such as personalized marketing on its mobile app — to target certain subsets of customers. 

RELATED: Starbucks hacks you'll want to know

Starbucks hacks
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Starbucks hacks
Barista Tip #1: Order a latte with chai syrup instead of a dirty chai; it's the same thing without the cost of added espresso shots to a chai latte.
Barista Tip #2: If you have a sore throat, the "cough drop" is a drink almost all baristas will recognize, and it's made with emperors cloud, jade citrus mint, steamed lemonade instead of water, and a pack of honey added (this drink is a lifesaver during the winter months).
Barista Tip #3: Never pay for water; the tap water is always filtered and used in a variety of drinks.
Barista Tip #4: Having iced drinks shaken makes all the difference, especially with an iced green tea latte, so request that your drink is shaken because baristas won't always do it if you don't ask.
Barista Tip #5: Teas come with 1 or 2 tea bags depending on the size (1 for a tall and 2 for a grande and venti), but you can ask for a mix of tea bags in the grande or venti (my personal favorite is mixing ‘Passion Tango’ and ‘Peach Tranquility’).
Barista Tip #6: Try soy milk in any drink (especially a latte or chai latte) instead of regular milk for added vanilla sweetness.
Barista Tip #7: Everything from the pastry section tastes better warmed up, unless it's a pound cake which you cannot order heated.
Barista Tip #8: Ask for a few ice cubes in hot tea/brewed coffee in order to avoid burning your tongue.
Barista Tip #9: Try adding caramelized banana compote (a sauce that normally comes with oatmeal) to a vanilla bean frappuccino.
Barista Tip #10: If you aren't sure of a brew or drink, ask for a sample. If the store isn't busy, they will happy to let you try something before buying.
Barista Tip #11: Apple fritters with caramel sauce drizzled on top is life changing.
Barista Tip #12: Order your chai without the water for a stronger taste.
Barista Tip #13: Starbucks retailer stores are almost always more expensive. This means your airport Starbucks and a Starbucks in a grocery store, etc. 

While the Frappuccino Happy Hour has lost its shine, Maw said that the Unicorn Frappuccino acted as a significant sales driver last April. 

"It was a wonderful product and we have got some other things planned that I think will be pretty cool as well," Maw said. 

One of those "pretty cool" things seems to be the Crystal Ball Frappuccino. Keep an eye out for the limited-time Frappuccino on Starbucks menus later this week. 

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