The world of top-tier hairstylists is not exactly known as an ego-free zone. When the end goal lies with an eponymous line, it pays (literally) to be focused on cultivating your brand. But, what if everyone could put their egos aside and find a way to collaborate on something truly special — a hair-care line that combines the best talents and skills in the beauty biz and blends them into a brand that makes taking care of your hair a user-friendly, dare we say enjoyable, endeavor.
Well, the dynamic trio of Garren, Thom Priano, and Howard McLaren have done just that with R+Co, a new brand they are calling a "superline" and a unique partnership that's functioning as a "style collective." Each stylist brings his own specific talent set to the brand: Garren, with his high-fashion editorial resumé (Vogue pretty much has him on speed dial) brings serious styling expertise; Priano, considered one of the world's top men's groomers, works with clients like Abercrombie & Fitch and Calvin Klein, contributes his know-how in men's styling to the table; and McLaren, a former creative director for brands like Bumble and bumble and Toni & Guy, is a master educator who teaches stylists new techniques and unique ways to style hair. Together these three are a literal dream team of hair.
At first glance, it's clear there's definitely something different about R+Co. Visually, the products are eye-catching, with lush photography on the wrappers to help paint a clear picture of what each product is geared towards. For instance, the Death Valley Dry Shampoo features a pretty arresting landscape shot of, you guessed it, Death Valley — the driest place in North America. The brand also has quite the sense of humor about their names: Tinsel for a dry oil, Dallas for its volumizing line, and Outer Space for its hairspray. As McLaren wisely puts it: "The visuals are the wow factor, but the performance seals the deal."
The brand has also invested heavily on the tech side, with a snazzy app and website that's aimed at helping educate and connect both stylists and consumers. It features a series of haircuts, created by McLaren, that stylists can use as a reference with their clients. The brand will constantly add new styles to the site, aiming to get to 24 by the end of the year. With each haircut, they've also created a variety of different styles using the line — there's how-to styling videos as well as an overview of the products used for each style and exactly how to use each.
We're kind of in love with this whole collective approach to beauty. Each stylist brings something to the table that the other might not have thought of and the perspective is constantly changing and evolving to create a more complete vision of what hair care can be. Plus, the brand has mentioned that they are open to bringing new guest talent into the collective — finding stylists whose work they admire and having them work with the brand to create a product. Seems like a pretty smart way to do business and it's a model we hope catches on in other areas of the industry.