When browsing the beauty aisles on the search a perfect skin care product, it’s rare to see many men on the hunt as well.
Let’s be honest — there really aren’t many skin care options out there that cater to men outside of primarily women-focused brands that offer a men’s or unisex line.
But Josh Meyer, cofounder and CEO of Brickell Men’s Products, said these just aren’t cutting it. When Meyer himself was on the hunt for a quality, men’s skin care line that also met his specifications for natural ingredients, he came up short. It was then that Meyer and his fellow cofounder decided to turn a gap in the market into a business opportunity — and from there, Brickell Men’s Products was born.
In this week’s Warby of X installment, Meyer shared with PYMNTS why overcoming the myth that men don’t care about the products they use for skin care and grooming opened the door to a much-needed industry disruption.
Here is an excerpt of the conversation.
PYMNTS: How did Brickell Men’s Products get started?
JM: I live in Miami — the sun is always shining and takes a toll on your skin. About three years ago, my then-girlfriend and I took a picture. I felt like I looked a little different in the photo. I asked why. And she casually mentioned she used Photoshop to buff out my forehead wrinkle. I realized I needed to start taking better care of my skin, so I started checking out skin care products for men. But I couldn’t find any brands that fit me or my skincare needs as a man.
I’m allergic to gluten and dairy, so I was also interested in the ingredients in the products I was checking out. I happened to Google one ingredient — turns out a study showed that ingredient could shrink the testicles of mice. I had no idea a product could contain an ingredient even remotely linked to something like that. I thought there should be a high-end brand for men that used natural and organic ingredients. My business partner and I set out to work with a few manufacturers to create our initial formulas, and Brickell was born.
PYMNTS: What was the inspiration behind using a direct-to-consumer eCommerce business model versus using a brick-and-mortar or physical channel?
JM: I have a background in web development, so eCommerce was a natural choice. Both Matt and I knew brick-and-mortar would be costly and time-consuming. Brickell is self-funded, so we had to be careful with how we spent money. With eCommerce, we could do a lean launch. We take an eCommerce-first approach while strategically partnering with prestige brick-and-mortar stores such as Bloomingdale’s to help grow the brand.
PYMNTS: How has Brickell Men’s Products disrupted the skin care industry, specifically when it comes to creating products that cater to men? Why was the industry in need of these types of offerings?
JM: Brickell is the first commercially successful men’s skin care and grooming brand that uses natural and organic ingredients. The industry was desperate for this type of product — the vast majority of men’s skincare lines still use chemicals and synthetic ingredients.
Men do care what they put on their body — they usually are just not as public about it.
PYMNTS: How does Brickell Men’s Products differentiate itself from other brands, such as skin care brands that carry a men’s line?
JM: Brickell focuses on not only using natural and organic ingredients in our products, but also men. Most brands offer a men’s line as a second afterthought, or men’s lines slowly morph themselves into a unisex brand. Brickell says it’s for men right on the bottle in our name: Brickell Men’s Products. We have many customers who purchase our products simply because we have this singular focus.
PYMNTS: How does your trial program work? Do you have a lot of customers that choose that option when checking out your products for the first time?
JM: Customers can buy a Starter Sample Kit for $6.95 that comes with a mixture of small jars, bottles and sample packets of 15 products. Then we email them a $10 off code towards their first purchase. This program is extremely successful. It’s similar to a software company offering a 30-day free trial.
PYMNTS: What is your take on the “Warby of X” concept? Do you see direct-to-consumer evolving as a sustainable business model that can continue to spark disruption?
JM: Absolutely. This is evident by the large number of retail stores closing down. People are comfortable with shopping online. It’s now a matter of finding unique, efficient ways to get your products to a consumer’s home.
Amazon, of course, is a prime (no pun intended) example of this. They constantly are pushing what an “eCommerce store” can be.
We also think younger generations are questioning the value of a “middleman” — whether that be a store, wholesaler or distributor. You can just set up an eCommerce shop and attract a following via low-cost, targeted Facebook ads.
PYMNTS: What’s next for Brickell Men’s Products? Do you have any news or updates you can share?
JM: We’re going to be upgrading our entire Starter Sample Kit. First-time customers will have an even better initial experience using our brand.