An estimated 20 million African American men reportedly suffer from or at some point in their lives have been plagued by razor bumps.
For those whose faces are hit the hardest, life can be a roller coaster of pure agony.
According to Doctor Michelle Henry, “Razor bumps, also called pseudofollicultis barbae, can occur in any area that hair is temporarily removed by shaving, waxing or tweezing. These painful bumps and pustules occur when hairs curl back into the skin causing your body to perceive them as “foreign” (like a splinter) and produce an inflammatory response. The inflammation can cause bumps, pus, discoloration and keloidal scars.
The fight to rid faces of these unsightly blemishes has contributed to making the male grooming market a $3.6 billion industry. It’s a booming untapped market and a sweet spot for companies looking to capitalize and a goldmine for companies with products that actually work.
A Houston-based startup is offering cutting edge solutions to help clients shave without irritation. Shavewise soft launched in December after two years of pitches, development, and research, and in March embarked on a marketing blitz to scale up the firm.
It was started by Greg Ward, a Harvard grad and a veteran in the corporate environment after working for fortune 500 companies for almost 20 years.
Ward says he suffered from razor bumps for more than two decades. His condition was so unbearable at times that he says he found it difficult to sleep on the sides of his face.
BlackEnterprise.com spoke to Ward about his new venture and his plans to not only tap into the market but also provide a desperately needed service that could potentially change lives.
According to him, “Most of the solutions on the market today are band-aids. They try to address issues associated with the razor or the moisture in products, after shave or oils. Ours is the only system that looked at the anatomical nature of shaving hair and the medicinal pharmaceutical perspective of what it will take to get the inflammation down to keep the bumps away.”
Ward says there is a fundamental flaw about the way big companies tackle shaving bumps. He says, “Every guy’s face is different in the way their hair grows and this is where the big companies are missing the mark. What creates an opportunity for us is we developed a process where we teach clients how to discover the growth pattern of their face and the right way to use our products.”