Now that there’s a juice shop on every corner and a yoga studio beside it—all thanks to the proliferation of the wellness craze—having your very own green juice in hand is no longer enough to channel your inner Gwyneth. That green juice has to be specially customized for you, carefully made with the type of ingredients that guarantee you’re cleansed, detoxed and ready for your next bespoke experience.
Five of New York’s most popular custom brands gathered at the Helix headquarters for a panel called “Personalize Your Morning,” to offer tips on creating a brand new routine.
There was no better place than the Helix HQ, as they deliver individual mattresses made based on weight, height and sleeping position; it’s certainly not anything similar to the experience of dragging an Ikea Sultan home in a taxi.
The founders on the panel, from Helix, Care/Of, Daily Harvest, Diptyque, Function of Beauty and The Buff, all agreed that one reason their specialty brands have grown in popularity is because so many millennials want to build their personal brand—and what better way to do so than with a completely custom bed and a carefully curated medicine cabinet that is pure Instagram bait?
“Customization is something the big brands can’t do that well. Now we have this absolute boom of boutique beauty brands and indie beauty brands that can capitalize on those things,” Jasmine Garnsworthy said, noting, “personal brand is key.” Garnsworthy is the founder of The Buff, a brand that blends custom beauty oils. She’s certainly perfected her own personal brand, with more than 17,000 Instagram followers.
Garnsworthy doesn’t believe a “one-size fits all approach” is the mantra businesses should be adopting in the beauty industry, a belief echoed by her millennial peers. Each company at the one day only pop-up boasts a carefully maintained Instagram feed with hints of millennial pink and the promise your order will be exclusive, whether it’s vitamins based on your energy level and diet, detox soup celebrities swear by or DIY potpourri (it’s not just for grandma’s closet).
But these brands aren’t just catering to what you think they want; they’re all about who you want to be. “We ask what your hair profile is and the aspirational aspect—what do you want your hair to be? What do you want to enhance?” Function of Beauty founder and MIT grad Zahir Dossa asked. It’s not just about purchasing new shampoo at Duane Reade; it’s about customers saying “I deserve this and this is something I need,” according to Dossa.
Direct-to-consumer e-commerce has changed the way people shop, but these brands are taking it one step further. It’s not enough to have something no one else in your neighborhood has; it has to be a product no one in the world has, either.