Indie Beauty Profile
Allison Moss, type:A Brands
Thanks to innovative product formulas, clever packaging, judicious retail deals, and hard work, type:A deodorant is a rising star in both the clean beauty movement and the humble deodorant category.
“During the last 6 months in the market, we've produced over 30,000 tubes of deodorant (and counting) and sold out twice during that timeframe,” brand founder Allison Moss tells Cosmetics Design. “Though we now have scaled up production and put stronger safety stock limits in place so we can ensure that doesn’t happen again,” she admits, “it's a been a bit stressful, but also an incredible testament to the product opportunity.”
Here, the beauty entrepreneur shares a profile of herself and the brand.
Name: Allison Moss, Founder and CEO
Indie Beauty Company: type:A Brands
Launched: April 2018
Headquarters: Santa Monica, California
Cash flow: During the development and early launch phases, the business was self-funded. However, we’re thrilled to announce that in September we closed a seed round of fundraising, for just over $500k.
Asked further about funding, Moss says, we considered all options including crowd funding and accelerators. The former didn’t feel like the right fit given our concept, timeline and the industry atmosphere. The latter also never made sense from a timeline perspective.
However, we did raise a seed round of funding to stay competitive, fuel growth and capitalize on the tremendous early interest we’ve seen. We have a group of small investors in our seed round – the investment offering for the round is a convertible note.
We’re proud that our two lead investors are both experienced in the space and can add value beyond the capital. One has made other investments in successful, modern consumer brands. The other is a former entrepreneur who built and sold a beauty business.
Indie how? I would define a beauty brand as “indie” based on its size and its ownership - brands with a small to mid-size business, who are in growth mode, where the founders are still intimately involved and own the majority of the company.
Team work: We are a team of 7 at the minute. We have 4 full-time employees (including myself) and 3 part-time employees.
Distribution: We aim to reach consumers where they shop for deodorant or discover new brands. Currently we’re focused on reaching US consumers, though we do get a lot of interest from international markets and would love to expand in the future.
Right now, we’re available on our web site, on Amazon, at Credo Beauty, on goop, and at select Urban Outfitters stores.
Years in beauty: My background is in brand and product marketing in the beauty industry. I’ve been in the industry since 2002. At the start, I worked with global, entrenched brands like MAC Cosmetics, Lancôme and L’Oreal Paris, as well as smaller brands such as Jurlique and Beautycounter.
Years at type:A Brands: The concept for type:A deodorant came to me about 2 years ago....I had a vision for what could be a game-changing safe, clean deodorant [and wanted to] be able to offer mainstream consumers a no-sacrifice alternative to antiperspirants....So I took a leap of faith, and dedicated myself exclusively to the product concept that has become type:A deodorant. I started work in late 2016, and we launched type:A deodorant on our web site in April 2018.
Entrepreneurial experience: This is the first company I’ve started and it’s been the most incredible, rewarding, exciting experience. I feel a bit like an accidental entrepreneur. While I always had tremendous respect for entrepreneurs, I wasn’t working toward that goal in my career. But when the opportunity presented itself, I knew I had to take it. The product is very special, truly differentiated. And growing this brand feels like a natural extension of what I’ve done to date in my career.
The business: We are type:A brands, makers of type:A deodorant.We are passionate about helping people lead healthier lives without sacrifice and helping to bring clean beauty to the mainstream.
The wow-factor: type:A deodorant is a new concept in aluminum-free deodorant that offers high-performance in an innovative tube with a button applicator. Three things set type:A apart from all of the other ‘natural’ deodorants on the market:
1) We aim to be all-safe rather than all-natural. By incorporating safe synthetics + natural ingredients, we have created high-performance deodorant that’s easy to wear.
2) Our deodorant features our exclusive sweat-activated technology for long-lasting odor and wetness protection.
3) Our deodorant comes in a tube, but not just any tube. With a unique button applicator, it makes applying type:A deodorant quick and easy. Swipe on a thin layer of cream and you’re good to go.
The customer: Everyone who sweats! type:A deodorant was designed to work hard, no matter your body chemistry. Women, men, young and old – type:A will keep you protected. That said, our core target customers are both women and men, 25yrs – 45yrs.
Milestone moment: Our most proud brand building moment happened in September, when goop took on type:A deodorant to retail in their online store and shared a glowing product review with their followers. We know the goop team is quite discerning and they are such strong advocates to consumers for authentic clean beauty and wellness brands. We were honored by their endorsement of type:A and it really took our consumer brand awareness to the next level!
Advice for fellow beauty entrepreneurs: My advice would be to continuously ask for advice and input, and always listen fully to the response. Be completely present and really listen to both requested and unsolicited advice. If the advice doesn’t fit, don’t use it. But you never know when another perspective will either be exactly what you needed, or will spark a new idea.
Just one: My go-to beauty product (other than my type:A deodorant!) that I can’t live without is a facial cleansing oil. Applying it feels like I’m giving myself a mini-facial, and it leaves my skin so soft and smooth. I’ve recently been loving Juice Beauty’s Stem Cellular Cleansing Oil.
Deanna Utroske, CosmeticsDesign.com Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.