It’s been a long while since I last featured products especially for men, and with an influx of men’s skincare on the market now, why feature yet another men’s skincare line? Well, for starters, this range is Australian made and ticks all the boxes when it comes to using Australian sourced ingredients, as well as having a range that has been specially designed for the Australian climate. I’m talking about Wedge Australia – Made For A Man By A Man.
Based in Perth, I have been fortunate to be able to interview the creator, Thom Wedge to find out more about the idea and story behind Wedge Australia.
How did you come up with this idea of formulating your own line of skincare for men?
Back in 2012 I was running another business called BadHairBoy.com.au and was offering several ranges of men’s grooming and skin care online. I was training in a gym in North Beach, WA with some boys that worked FIFO up in the Pilbara. They started asking me about a good healthy and natural anti-aging moisturiser for their skin, because they worked in such a hot and dry environment.
They were starting to notice sun damage, dryness and even the beginnings of some fine lines around the eyes. I started to see a need and I wanted to meet it. I looked into what was available, and found either really expensive products that most guys won’t go for, or I found very inexpensive products that have nasty ingredients that I would steer most men away from. Plus, there weren’t any really appealing Australian made products for men that I thought were good quality and value for the price.
Taking all of those factors into mind, I thought, “why not develop an awesome mens range of men’s skin care specifically for our hot and dry climate that is healthy and good for your skin and made in Australia?”. One thing led to another, doors kept opening and within a year I found myself being mentored in the art of skin care formulation by a local Perth skin care formulator that guided me in a completely “hands on” approach to develop many different products.
From the start I wanted to know how to do it; I didn’t just want to pay some company to make some products that I could slap a label on. I wanted to know how to do it, what was in it and why. I wanted to get in and get my hands dirty- well, actually clean because it’s quite fun to clean up after you’ve been experimenting all day! Often we would have a laugh about how I was mixing, measuring and testing my formulas, and I would even think to myself, “Wow, did you EVER think you would find yourself making moisturiser for men in a multi-million dollar facility?” No, that idea really had never crossed my mind, but man is it a lot of fun!
What sort of things did you have to consider when formulating the range?
My first consideration was ingredients. How much healthy, natural and native things can I include that will benefit mens skin and promote better health. Which also means I had to consider what I wouldn’t put in, things like parabens and sulphates, petrochemicals, chlorine.
I also wanted to make sure the packaging was recyclable and biodegradable. Most significantly, I wanted it be an excellent range that works well and be appealing to men, because for many men skin care is a new product to incorporate into their health.
Most men won’t add something to do to just add something. I imagined the scenario of talking to a guy who hasn’t used moisturiser regularly, and asked him if he has dry skin. He says yes, I say try using this moisturiser and see how your skin feels, he does it, he loves it and becomes a regular user. This is exactly what has happened. Even I’ve been surprised how many guys have tried our Skin Fitness Booster Serum, and were totally skeptical at first and said they didn’t need that stuff. However, plenty of those guys are now my regular clients. One guy even wrote from the UK who said that our serum “properly fixed his face!”
How is Wedge Australia different from the other men’s skincare brands?
Our range is made for a man by a man (and a team of expert men in skin care formulation) using the best from the Australian land and sea to give you skin that you will look good in.
Our price points deliver quality but not break the bank. Our service can’t be beat, because we’re small and offer you one on one service. I answer all emails personally and have taken many calls from clients with questions about how to use men’s skin care (I love those calls by the way).
The boys and I in the factory have a lot of fun formulating and testing our products on ourselves first as well as our friends and would never let anything leave the shop that we aren’t 100% proud of. We love searching Australia for new and exciting plants, extracts and essential oils that we can include in future products, which are coming!
Many have asked why we focus only on men, and others say that it’s about time men’s skin gets some attention. I agree and often educate men that skin care is a health product, not a beauty product. When that clicks, then they are totally on board. Guys like to look good, and I show them I can give them skin they will look good in.
I noticed that you’ve got the very basic products in your range, which I think is great because having too many would just put some men off looking after their skin altogether. Was that intentional or are you planning on creating more?
It was intentional, but also financial! There are huge decisions to be made when considering going forward with and releasing a new product. I started thinking about what are the basics a man needs to really care for his skin.
I’ve had many requests for specific products and will be developing those as well as we continue and grow. It’s been surprising how many men have come to me privately asking questions or suggesting a product they want to see. Pun intended, I’m glad to see that men’s skin care is no longer a dirty word. I want every man around the world to take care of his skin, his health and his life!
How are you reaching out to men out there about the importance of skincare?
One important way I reach out to men about the importance of skin care is to get to know as many guys as I can and learn about their lives and what they want and need. I’m not just trying to sell them some stuff, even though what I do have is really awesome and be effective for them.
When I mention skin care, I just own the topic and talk about it. I do many product demos at markets or gyms and love it. I find many men very receptive to the idea of improving their skin if they are new to it.
Recently I was flown up to two different mining sites in the Pilbara of Western Australia to educate men on the importance of caring for their skin. It may initially seem like an unlikely environment to offer skin care, but it turned out to be excellent, considering the environment.
Literally thousands of men would stop by after their shift on the way to to the tavern and talk with me about their skin. I gave away thousands of product samples and tons of full-size products for the guys to try and got incredible feedback. After a shift these guys were covered in iron ore, so an offer a free Face Wash with Beetroot Superfood to take back to their room to try was hardly rejected. Truthfully, before I went up I was a little nervous about the response thinking, “would these boys be at all interested?” I figured, just own it and help these guys in even a small way improve their health and their day. The boys loved it and I made many new friends. It was an excellent adventure and I look forward to doing more and more of that!
I have never seen a man who is so passionate not only about skin care for men but in providing great service that will help educate men on skin care – something I think is highly lacking at the moment. Stay tuned next week when I share Mr. C’s experience using the range from Wedge Australia.