Back in the day, the men’s grooming category was synonymous with shaving products. But not anymore. The rising acceptance of facial hair has led to a boom in beard-care products.
Take Scotch Porter, for example. On top of the fact that it’s the top-selling beard-care brand at Target, its beard conditioning balm is the No. 2 best-selling product in the retailer’s entire men’s care category.
“Beards have the staying power,” said Scotch Porter founder Calvin Quallis on this week’s episode of the Glossy Beauty Podcast. Investors agree that beard care is big business, as well. The brand’s $11 million dollar Series B round was led by Pendulum, a firm founded by the Obamas’ financial advisor. The brand is now expanding into body care, skin care and fragrance.
In the episode, Quallis shares the founding story of the brand, which emerged from the popular barbershop he founded to serve as a hub for both hair care and events ranging from performances to political debates. He also talks about men’s care trends and the brand’s bet on new categories such as fragrance and skin care.
On his inspiration for getting into beard care
“It was at a time when men were embracing their beards a bit more. And it’s just insight. So it’s being in the barbershop, seeing more men come in with beards. [Rather than] deciding to cut the beards, [they were] having the barber shape it up. But I also saw that the men coming in weren’t necessarily doing anything outside of just keeping the beard shaped. It’s like, ‘What are you doing to keep it moisturized and to keep it not looking frizzy and to keep it looking nice, outside of just the typical trim?’ What I realized was that there weren’t a tremendous amount of products on the market that were really focused on showing men how to keep and maintain their beards. What mostly existed was how to take them off.”
On the enduring appeal of beards
“Beard care has just been pretty fantastic. I mean, it continues to be a category that continues to grow, despite folks believing that it might have been a trend or ‘folks are growing out their beard because of the pandemic.’ We are finding that it still continues to be a category that grows well. And retailers continue to be behind it and invest in it. And in fact, our brand is No. 1 in beard at Target, and we continue to grow and do well there. Beard is a hot category that continues to grow.”
On the men’s skin-care revolution
“What continues to be very interesting is body care and skin care. We’re just continuing to see men continuing to invest in and think about skin care. That could be because we are on more Zooms. Or with the proliferation of social media and all these channels, we’re in front of the camera more. So we are seeing men think about investing a bit more in the skin-care routine. And then body care–trading up from the basics. Folks are definitely investing more into body care; men are investing more in those areas.”