Why for men?
A few people have asked why and how our shampoo and shower bars are designed for men. Time to explain my thinking.
#1 Made by me (a man) for me
When looking for a shampoo bar a couple of years ago, I could not find one that I liked. All that I found seemed to be based on floral fragrances that I did not want to use. So I thought I would make one. You can read more on our story here.
#2 Bold scents
I really like a good strong blast in the shower to wake me up and get me going for the day.
The first brick I made was Mint and Tea Tree. I knew Tea Tree was a really good essential oil and I was suffering a bit with an itchy scalp (sorry if that is TMI). After quite a bit of trial and error with the ingredients, I made one that I really liked and which worked wonders on my scalp.
Then I thought about what scent I would really like that no-one else was making as far as I could see. So the Lime and Lemongrass bar was born and man has it been popular.
I've got loads of other ideas for scents. The challenge is making it strong enough. You can't just put endless amounts of essential oils in. The mixture has to be just right and the product certification won't allow it anyway. And it has to be essential oils - for example I really like Cedarwood as a smell but I haven't yet been able to make a bar to my liking with essential oil so it is ruled out for now. I won't use synthetic fragrances, even if that limits the range of what I can do. This stuff is really important!
Next up is probably going to be Cypress and Pine for those awesome forest scents you get when you go for a run or a hike amongst the trees.
If anyone has any requests or ideas for other scents, I'm really happy to trial them as I sit in my workshop and engage in a little product development - just get in touch.
#3 No fuss
I wanted a simple and straightforward design. I just didn't need anything else like colours or pretty shapes with a hair and body wash bar. I am a bit of a fan of minimalism and just having our logo stamped onto the bar really appealed to me even though this meant a bit more work in making the bars.
#4 Are men a little neglected when it comes to eco-personal care products?
This may be a bit controversial and I speak only from personal experience. Bear in mind I was looking for these products a couple of years ago and I just could not find anything aimed at men like me or that otherwise appealed. The idea to turn it into a business was an extrapolation of this feeling - if I was looking and wanting to make eco-changes in my life, surely there were loads of other guys out there who wanted to do the same but were finding it difficult because of the products on offer.
I think the market has come on somewhat in the last couple of years but I still think our product offering is pretty unique taking into account all the factors that I wanted to cover in the business:
no palm oil
no perfumes or synthetic fragrances
the level at which the bricks are priced. I really wanted to be fair and reasonable and I think I have achieved this particularly taking into account the next factor...
I carefully shaped and sized the bars so they could be sent with letterbox delivery and really low postage costs. Second class delivery for one bar (standard Royal Mail) is 96p and for three it is £1.99.
and finally that we offer a subscription service with a 10% saving which takes out the hassle of remembering to re-order when you are running low after you have got out of the shower, dressed, on with the day etc. This is going to bring other benefits too (working on this).
I reckon these factors each merit a blog so watch this space for more details.
#5 Just for men?
Nope, would never say that. I think that women's hair is a little more complicated because of length and dye factors. Anyway, all I want to say is that whilst I designed these for me, a man, there is nothing to prevent women using them. I do know from mates that some of their missus are using and liking them as well. Mrs J is one. And I use them on the little Js too.
Thanks guys for buying and liking the product. We have had an awesome start and have big plans. Do get in touch on insta (jims_bricks), facebook (@jimsbricks) or direct with any questions. We'd love to engage and follow you and see what you are up to on living an eco-conscious life as well.