There are two types of men’s grooming customers. The first is a smartly dressed gentleman who knows his facial moisturizers from his scrubs. The second has a skin-care routine that consists of bar soap and water.
Entrepreneur Christopher Butler and Cleveland Browns linebacker Karlos Dansby, co-creators of Montez Renault men’s grooming line, see opportunity in addressing the needs of both men. “Our guy is someone who is savvy about skin care, but there’s also the guy who doesn’t know much,” said Butler. “We want to teach him the right way to care for himself, too.”
The nine-sku line includes shampoo and conditioner, skin care and body and is priced from $16 to $20. It was born out of Butler and Dansby’s first venture, a men’s grooming salon in Birmingham, Ala., Butler’s Grooming Club. The five-year-old club offers haircuts, hot lather shaves, hand and foot treatments and facials in a high-end, man-cave environment. “We started talking to our members, and they told us the types of products they’d want to use at home,” said Butler. “That’s how Montez Renault started coming to life.” The club’s 500-plus clients gave feedback on everything from texture to scent when the duo tweaked formulas during research and development.
In addition to offering some innovative ingredients — QuoSome is a proprietary encapsulation agent that reportedly helps deliver active ingredients to deeper levels of the skin — Montez Renault is retailing in an unconventional way. The brand launched exclusively this week on Spring, a new, buzzed-about app that is a cross between a shopping platform and Instagram. App retailing makes sense for the brand, as men are more likely to do their shopping online and on devices than in stores.
“We wanted to do something different, and Spring worked for us because it’s a new platform that’s gotten a lot of traction,” said Butler. Montez Renault will roll out to brick-and-mortar in November starting with Loews hotels and Hudson News outlets in airports. The company is also in distribution talks with a national gym chain and expects to reach $2 million to 3 million in sales over the first year.
Montez Renault’s marketing will rely on leveraging the social media influence of Dansby and other NFL players like Patrick Peterson, Jordan Cameron and Miles Austin. The players will post content about the line on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. “Now, you see a lot of athletes getting attention for what they wear during post-game interviews, so we want to be a part of that [conversation],” said Dansby. “That [shift] stands to impact our business in a great way, but our primary focus is delivering products that complement the grooming habits of all men.”