In her years grooming celebrities like Shawn Mendes, Ryan Reynolds, and Hugh Jackman, Kristan Serafino has always been on the hunt for the best paste — literally.
This week, Serafino introduced The Best Paste, its styling product brand. Starting with five stock units — styling products for men named by their various finishes and hold levels, each priced at $28 — the brand launched directly to its website on Tuesday, as well as select barbershops and hair salons.
Serafino’s familiarity with the products predates its launch. She acquired the company originally known as Anchors Hair Co., founded by barber Ben Miller, along with its facilities in April 2021. She then tweaked the formulas while renaming, renaming and by refurbishing them.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Serafino said it was born out of his relationship with the brand. “It really is the best I’ve ever used, it’s in my kit, it’s been with me on six continents,” she said. “We began our due diligence in January 2021 and wrapped it up in April, and Miller remains on the team.”
Market research Serafino relied on indicated that 6 million men bought hair paste during the pandemic and that men don’t buy by hair type. “You want to know the level of shine and the hold, and that’s why we designed the naming that way,” she said. Products include High Shine Light Hold and Natural Shine Medium Hold for example.
Serafino also took a more essentialist approach when first starting out with the brand. Under its former owner, it had 28 skin care and shaving products, as well as hair care. Now she’s polished off her top five bestsellers and is only selling those.
” Well [Miller] and I’m working on three new formulas,” she said. “We’re not looking to expand the lineup to very many skus. We’ll grow as we see fit and as needed.
The brand’s approach to distribution is also similar. Serafino hasn’t ruled out eventually expanding into retail, but given her penchant for product education, she felt it was best to start on her own website.
“I even put a QR code on the boxes that will take consumers to an educational video,” Serafino said. “As a hairdresser, I wanted to show that not only do I give you what you ask for, but I wanted to show you how to use it.
“Products work, it’s usually user error that’s the problem,” she continued, referring to her experience with her clients. “It’s only when I educate them on the application and the style that they get it.”
It also played a role in the brand’s marketing strategy, she said. Serafino’s megawatt client list may boast a following, but itself has over 65,000 followers on Instagram alone.
“It’s my job as an authority on grooming that I educate with the knowledge that I have,” she said. “Over the years, when I included the brand in a quote, sales skyrocketed.”
Serafino has not commented on sales, although industry sources expect the brand to hit $1-3 million in sales in its first year on the market.
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