The grooming industry is normally dominated by your big names and giant conglomerates but thanks to the rise of social media, more and more indie brands are beginning to carve out a space for themselves. One of those brands is Ceramiracle.
“We debuted on Facebook and till today, we rely heavily on the use of social media to reach out to potential customers. It was also through social media that we managed to catch onto celebrities like Noah Cyrus, Julie Lake, Emily Althaus and Erica Yuen, who are all users of Ceramiracle,” shares Eugene He, head honcho of Ceramiracle.
Eugene tells us more about the challenges of the grooming industry and how Brother has helped him with his business with the new PT-P300BT label printer.
Tell me more about Ceramiracle.
Ceramiracle is a beauty and nutricosmetics brand from California. We are a prejudice-free brand that focuses on anti-aging products that are formulated to be universally suitable for all skin types, regardless of gender or ethnicity. The brand began in late 2016 and is currently available in the US, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and China.
What are the greatest challenges of the grooming industry?
This industry has always been dominated by the big brands with deep pockets so for a long while, it was almost impossible for an indie brand to establish itself in the industry, much less expand internationally. Social media, however, has changed this and over the last few years, we are seeing many indie brands outperforming the main players.
The next challenge would be coming up with products that have an international appeal with efficacy to match. For most brands, a contract manufacturer does the formulation and a key part of the brief is to keep it within a low budget, which often results in sub-quality products. There is also the challenge for small brands to acquire good clinically studied ingredients due to the high minimums required.
Fortunately this is something that we do not have to navigate around as I do most of the formulation work with my team of chemists and have built a fairly advantageous network in the ingredients supply industry.
What are your thoughts on men and skincare?
As a naturopath I do believe it’s imperative that men take care of their skin as seriously as women. Your skin says a lot about your state of health and you as an individual, so skin care shouldn’t be seen as a feminine routine.
Fortunately that has changed a lot now and again, thank you social media. Perhaps the next step is for men to realize that skin care is not just what you apply on your face but also what you put into your body. Today, 30 per cent of our skin supplement customers are male and they make up of the most loyal group.
What have you learned about yourself in this entrepreneurship journey?
Being an entrepreneur has allowed me to recognise my strengths and find the best ways to leverage them. It has also made me realise how resilient I am. Thankfully, I’ve felt that my whole life has prepared me to be an entrepreneur. I have supportive parents who allowed me to explore independence from a very young age and my innate curiosity means I need to find out the answers to everything.
I’ve also learnt that achieving anything is possible if you are willing to pour your heart and soul into it while accepting the challenges that come your way.
We are a typical middle-income family from the heartlands so I’ve never had the luxury of money or a powerful network to jumpstart the business. It was all pure grit, hustle and sleepless nights.
What do you like and dislike about the Brother label printer we gave you?
I’ve always been a tech geek and I’ve had my eyes on the P-Touch ever since I saw the launch release. I usually hide my label printers since they are never aesthetically pleasing enough to be a table piece but the P-Touch now sits proudly on my desk. I love the Bluetooth function, which makes printing labels a breeze. The app is easy to use and I found that you can even print emojis on it!
Since I do label printing extensively, my main expectation is consistency and this has always been a let down in the past. The P-Touch runs smoothly and I no longer have to deal with labels getting stuck in the machine or having to re-type labels manually.
I do wish the P-Touch allows multi-line printing. That would give this device 10/10.
What’s your favourite feature of the printer?
The connectivity of the P-Touch is amazing. Now everyone in the office can connect to one single unit so no more fighting over label printers. I need to bring up the fact that I became a child again when I found out that the P-Touch prints gold directly on a ribbon (laughs).
How do you use the Brother printer in your work and business?
I work with a lot of product samples and raw materials so labeling is a daily affair. At any time, I would have at least 50 bottles of stuff in my room so the reliability of the printer is a must.
As I work mainly with liquids, the labels we use need to be waterproof. Also important is that labels must stick on well and yet come off easily without defacing our lab ware.
Prior to using the Brother printer, what were your thoughts about the brand?
The last Brother product I owned was a typewriter, so that says a lot! I’ve always thought of Brother as an old serious brand that one would typically find in a traditional office so I’m really glad the P-touch exists because now Brother is fun, trendy and innovative.
We have a printer that is currently struggling in the store so I’m definitely instructing them to get a Brother. Ultimately, reliability and productivity is most important to a business and Brother has definitely earned those medals with their P-Touch.