The Pacific Shaving Company launched nearly 2 decades ago and does well in the category with a small portfolio of beard and shaving products, including a new Slick Shave Stick and several caffeinated pre- and post- shave creams and balms. Here, one of the two beauty entrepreneurs behind the Pacific Shaving Company shares a profile of himself and the brand.
Name: Stan Ades, Co-Founder and CEO
Indie Beauty Company: Pacific Shaving Company
Headquarters: San Francisco, California
Cash flow: The Pacific Shaving Company was self-funded originally. A small friends-and-family round helped accelerate growth. Founders Stan Ades and CC Sofronas still own a majority of the business.
For many years, we were striving to hit that $1m annual revenue milestone. The year we finally did, we surpassed it completely, landing just a hair shy of $2m. All of those early years of hard work to win customers one at a time, felt like it had finally hit a critical mass to build upon.
Indie how? A beauty brand is independent if its mission, direction, and product development are entirely driven by the founders’ philosophy and is not owned and operated by an organization that would apply pressure or outside influence, causing it to act in a way that wasn't aligned with brand goals.
A beauty brand is independent if it has the freedom to operate and innovate in a way that may not appear consistent with typical business norms.
Team work: 2 full-time employees and about a dozen part-time (contract) partners / partnerships.
Distribution: We reach consumers globally through our own ecommerce site (PacificShaving.com), Amazon, and select international retailers. Across North America, we are available at regional and national food, drug, and mass retailers like CVS and Target.
Years in beauty: 18
Entrepreneurial experience: I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit with ‘side hustles’, but Pacific Shaving Company is the first full business I have founded, so far.
The business: Pacific Shaving Company is a leading manufacturer of innovative and effective grooming products for men, women, and teens. The company develops nothing-else-like-it products with safe, natural, and plant-derived ingredients to deliver a next-level shaving experience and break through the barriers that give shaving a bad name.
The wow-factor: Our goal is to breathe life into the grooming category through meaningful innovation that improve the grooming experience and make the daily routine of shaving more pleasurable.
The customer: It is really more of a psychographic, rather than a demographic: our target customer is someone interested in being well-groomed, open to products that are different than those that have defined the very mature men's grooming category for decades, and cares about the ingredients that they put on their skin.
Truly, the biggest opportunity—and challenge—is that our products have extremely broad appeal. Our customers are young and old, and come from all walks of life. Part of that is because of our commitment to develop high-quality, premium products at accessible price points.
Milestone moment: I'm most proud of the staying power of our products at retail. We have been in many of our retail accounts for as long as a decade. In a category that is becoming increasingly competitive each year, that milestone makes me most proud.
Advice for fellow beauty entrepreneurs: “When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this: you haven’t.” - Thomas Edison
Just one: Asked about his go-to product, Ades replies, Honestly – I love my tongue scraper! (Is that too gross?)
Deanna Utroske is a leading voice in the cosmetics and personal care industry as well as in the indie beauty movement. As Editor of CosmeticsDesign.com, she writes daily news about the business of beauty in the Americas region and regularly produces video interviews with cosmetics, fragrance, personal care, and packaging experts as well as with indie brand founders.
Deanna will be traveling next to the Personal Care Product Council’s annual meeting; if you’ll be there too and have beauty business news to share, feel free to contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org