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Grooming · September 27, 2017

BirchboxMan Q&A: Meet The Founders

V76 by Vaughn

A master stylist to the stars, Vaughn Accord created a grooming line that was as effective and hard-working as he is. Regardless of hair type or texture, Vaughns created something for everyone - here he dishes out his inspiration, tips and trends:

Describe your brand in three words:
Well-groomed, inspired, classic.

Youve got the quite the following, why do you think your products are so successful?
Its an artist-driven brand conceived from an experts point of view. Ive spent my entire career in this industry studying products and have put a lifetime of questions and thought into each product in the V76 line.

What is your approach when it comes to mens grooming?
I encourage keeping it simple as you find the look that works for you. Own it while knowing that throughout the years this look will change.

What inspires you?
Music is bigFor me it stands for rhythm and risks.

If you could only offer one grooming tip, what would it be?
Ask questions at your barbershop or salon. It's a safe place to talk about everything, including your hair, eyebrows, sideburns, hairline and complexion, so be sure to utilize it. Remember, it doesn't have to be complicated.

What are the looks this season?
This season we are seeing more length in mens hair, shorter beards and the continuation of the fringe trend. Also, everyone is wearing some product!

Editors Pick - V76 Hydrating Shampoo

Ursa Major

After years of city living, partners Oliver and Emily moved to Vermont where they created and developed an outdoors inspired line of all-natural products. Now, one of the most talked about natural brands out there, Oliver and Emily talk history and why Ursa Major is so damn good:

What drew you to make the move from NYC to Vermont?
Em and I both loved living and working in NYC, but after a while we wanted to simplify a bit, spend more time outdoors and be closer to family. Vermont was an easy choice. We love being here; its easy to get into a good groove at work while also maintaining a simple, balanced and healthy lifestyle. We still miss NYC but a lot of the more peripheral stuff has kind of melted away.

It seems your products draw a lot of inspiration from the outdoors - can you tell us more?
Thats definitely true - we love spending time outdoors and were big believers in the restorative powers of nature - so weve tried hard to weave these two elements together in our products and brand. When people use our products we want them to get that breath of fresh air feeling we get when we take a brisk morning hike in the woods. We think thats powerful and unique.

Men and women alike love your products, why do you think that is?
We have 6 women in our office and 3 men (and 3 office pups!)... everyone has 2-3 products they love. We dont really think about gender when we formulate - we might think about skin type, or usage context (e.g. travel), but at the end of the day were just trying to make awesome natural skin and body care products for whoever wants to use them.

People often rave about the scents of your products - did it take long to get that perfect scent, naturally?
This is often the trickiest, and most costly, part of our product development process; scents are really tough to get just right, especially when youre working only with whole essential oils. I think it helps that we have a strong POV around aroma and that we dont work off hard launch timelines - well keep tinkering with something til we love everything about it, even if it takes years to get there.

Editors Pick - Ursa Major Essential Face Wipes

Ernest Supplies

Grooming should be simple, effective, and natural - with that doctrine, John Cafarelli founded his brand of utilitarian products. Following a basic grooming regimen, John discusses his packaging and why he chose to keep production in America:

Why are all of your products multi-taskers?
When we started Ernest Supplies, we set out to build skincare products that were easy and effective. Given that many guys are intimidated by overly-complicated skincare regimens, we sought to build complex efficacies into single application products to make them easier to understand and uncomplicated to use. Bonus - they also save time and make packing for a trip or the gym a little easier.

Why the pouch package?
The pouches fit perfectly into the active and healthy lifestyle we try to support with our brand. On a practical level, theyre not delicate, so, theyre easy to travel with or throw into a gym bag. From a design perspective, they help differentiate our products in the market and, because theyre food grade, are great at helping to preserve the active ingredients in our formulas, such as antioxidants and vitamins. Last, but certainly not least, theyre an eco alternative to many traditional packages because they weigh very little and the product-to-package ratio is high, so, they require less fuel to transport.

People dont often think about where their beauty/grooming products are made, why did you think it was important to produce American made grooming products?
There are lots of reasons were committed to manufacturing our formulas in the USA but the biggest reason is because its a good business decision. Manufacturing in the USA helps us to maintain the high quality of our products and allows us to partner with our vendors on innovation and new product development. It also keeps production lead times reasonable. Of course, it goes without saying that were thrilled we get to support jobs right here at home.

Editors Pick - Ernest Supplies Protective Matte Moisturizer

- Bradley Cabral

Author

Bradley Cabral

Unsuccessfully mastering the art of baking. Will try any skincare product once (or twice).