By  on February 20, 2009

An Australian men’s skin care line called Eshu Skin Assist has set its sights on the U.S. market. The brand is also in the midst of an initiative to build on a four-item product assortment with items set to launch during the spring and summer.

The firm, which is based in the Melbourne suburb of St. Kilda, initially launched the quartet of facial skin care products in Australia about 18 months ago. Late last year, Eshu gained distribution in a handful of U.S. doors — and founder John Mount’s goal is to grow distribution of the brand to “hundreds” of U.S. doors in the next 12 months.

The firm, which takes its moniker from a West African god of the same name, now generates annual turnover of about $350,000, according to industry sources.

The assortment, which ranges in price from $18.50 for the 140-ml. face wash to $32.95 for the 100-ml. SPF 15 moisturizer, also includes a face scrub (120 ml. for $23) and a second, 100-ml. moisturizer for $29.95. All prices are for the U.S. market.

“There is one main indigenous ingredient for each product,” noted Mount, who pointed to the moisturizer’s Kakadu Plum extract, which has a high concentration of vitamin C. And the face wash includes Paper Bark Oil, a gentle relative of the tea tree family, he said.

Up next for the brand is the March launch of a shave cream and pre-shave oil. A body wash is planned for May.

In the U.S., the line is carried at Truman’s Gentlemen’s Groomers and Spa-Ja in New York. Later this year, Mount would like to introduce the line in London and in the cards could be an eventual launch in Brazil.

Green outer packaging includes simple directions and ingredient information “to speak to men,” said Mount, adding “although women purchase a lot of men’s products.”

And green primary packaging features a diagonal shoulder that comes in handy when product is running low — the design element allows bottles to easily perch on their sides.

While the brand is carried in about 35 or 40 Australian boutiques in Melbourne and Sydney, Mount is on a tour of U.S. retailers in San Francisco — where he was born and raised — and Seattle as part of his aggressive U.S. expansion plan.

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