With all the WFH time, did you compromise on your hygiene standards? Washed your hair less often?
Used less deodorant?
Thankfully our friends at Wellow have noticed that we are returning to normal hygiene in the new normal.
Their #1 deodorant of 2021 is making pits happy everywhere. Check out our Q&A with Dan Hernden , Co-Founder from Wellow.
What’s the inspiration behind the brand name? Wellow has a really nice ring to it. The subtle references to “wellness” and being “well” are why we chose it, but it’s also a lot of fun to say “Hello, Wellow!”
Why did you get into the beauty business? It happened by accident at first. I was traveling in Europe in 2018 and would constantly have my liquid face wash bottles confiscated by airport security. They would go straight into the trash with hundreds of other items, and I was stunned by how wasteful it was. I had also been hearing about plastic pollution in the news and couldn’t find any eco-friendly travel brands that were affordable and actually worked. Those experiences quickly became the inspiration for Wellow and my own journey into sustainability and self-care.
Wellow was launched during Covid years. How did that impact your business, positively or negatively? The first year of COVID was very bad for deodorant sales, and it did hurt our business at first. It was strange (and slightly amusing) to watch how quickly our collective hygiene standards fell when we couldn’t spend time in public settings anymore. I mean, I smelled like BO pretty often, and I run a deodorant brand!
What was the most surprising thing to you about launching a sustainable product? I’m most surprised that there isn’t a commonly accepted definition of “sustainability” that is shared between most industries and products. It feels like we’re making progress in that direction, at least slowly. However, there is a lot of noise and confusion in wider culture right now about what it means. This is still the early days of sustainability in the USA.
Is the deodorant the hero product? How does it stack up in terms of efficacy with the regular brands? Yes, deodorant is our hero product. It took us nearly three years to develop, and it’s one of the best performing natural deodorants you’ll find anywhere. We were fortunate to work with some of the best chemists and formulators in the industry, and we tested it on thousands of happy pits before launching it publicly.
Which sustainability commitment are you most protective of or keen to accelerate, and why? We believe that Big Plastic is a big problem. That’s why we’ve made it our mission to accelerate the transition away from single-use plastic and back to a more balanced way of life. Plastic has been around for about 70 years now, and only 9% has ever been recycled. We don’t need to ban plastic entirely, but we do need to get it under control, starting with single-use objects.
What are some other sustainable choices in your home? Great question! I recently started using liquid-free laundry detergent strips instead of plastic jugs, and I’ll probably never go back. I keep my produce fresh with beeswax wraps instead of plastic bags. I’m trying to adopt a more sustainable diet, which generally means more veggies and less meat and dairy. I’ve been buying cotton clothing instead of polyester fabrics so I don’t release microplastic fibers in the wash. I’ve ditched cotton swabs for a reusable alternative called LastSwab (so far so good!). I also own a really cool backpack made from recycled plastic water bottles, as well as a refillable coffee mug for when I’m on-the-go.
Which other sustainability-led brands do you admire? As of early 2022, I appreciate eco brands like Patagonia, Blueland, Bellroy, LastObject, Kotn, Neon Kactus, and many more that I don’t have space to mention here!
If you could collaborate with another brand (similar or different category), what brand would it be and why? It would be a dream to see Wellow collaborate with Sephora. They have a great reputation for discovering hot, on-trend beauty brands, and we would love to help push their shelves in a more sustainable direction.
What’s the best piece of advice – life or business – someone has given you? We often overestimate what we can accomplish in a year and underestimate what we can accomplish in ten years. Be persistent and don’t be afraid of thinking longer term.
Bonus Question: how do you politely tell someone s/he has BO? This is biased advice, but I would gift them a stick of Wellow Deodorant and tell them they’re helping save the planet ..wink wink 🙂