Los Angeles based Founders Blake Rascoe and Patrick Boateng II behind new beauty label Ceylone Skincare are looking to change the landscape and get men of colour part of the men’s health and beauty conversation. The duo who launched back in 2017 noticed amiss in the market when it comes to Men of colour and has now developed Ceylon, a treatment that is meant to address the skin problems that men of color disproportionately face. These include hyperpigmentation, acne scarring, razor bumps, eczema, and more.
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HI Blake, Hi Patrick, thanks so much for sitting and having this chat with us, first of all, tell how you both met?
We met in a summer program right before we started our first year in college (university) at Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA. We’ve been good friends ever since.
Tell us how Ceylon came about and just how you went about launching?
From the beginning, we knew we wanted to build something that spoke directly to our personal experiences. For (Patrick) me that was when living abroad, I had difficulty keeping my skin clear and healthy. I was experiencing daily breakouts and routine acne scarring. Despite trying hundreds of products, nothing seemed to help clear up my skin. For (Blake) me it started in high school, I was a three-sport athlete. The rigorous schedule and constant sweating made it difficult to keep my skin clear. I began using an over-the-counter skin care product recommended by my dermatologist at the time to help combat acne which also ended up bleaching my skin leaving me with a pale, washed-out complexion.
We thought about how to create products that we would have liked to have when we started learning more about how to take care of our skin and knew that if Ceylon could be the answer for us, it could be the answer for many others. Our mindset helped us to construct something easy to use, relatable, and efficient at its core.
While synthesizing our experiences from hundreds of different products we’ve personally tried, we also wanted to take a relatively grounded approach when it came to ideas of aesthetics, textures, use cases, and other areas of interaction that are often under-explored in product development. Once we had a clear concept for what Ceylon should be, we worked with our manufacturer to build several prototypes. Afterward, we tested those prototypes with a sizeable sample group of people across genders, skin tones, and skin types. We stuck to what worked and got rid of what didn’t.
The conversation on male grooming and beauty has risen massively in the last year, why do think this is?
Two things: We think there’s a growing awareness of and attention to personal health overall, with a broader view of what it means to live well likely a significant factor. Additionally, we are starting to see stigmas for men around grooming and beauty slowly erode, which has resulted in more men introducing skincare products into their daily routines.
Ceylon is of course dedication to Men of colour, why did you think it was important to occupy this market space?
As men of color, we didn’t have any options when it came to taking care of our skin. We wanted to create a brand that could effectively address some of the most common problems that men of color face when it comes to our skin. Additionally, we felt that it was important to make it clear that we matter and that we should have the ability to take control of our personal health and wellness on our own terms.
Where are Ceylon and its brand vision in “2020”?
For us, we’re looking at expansion into several different types of products beyond our currently available skincare basics as well as health services. We want to take a holistic view of health, wellness, and personal care as it relates to men of color, which means that we have to be ambitious with our offerings to really make the impact that we hope to.
Could we ever see Ceylon develop into Women of Colour products?
Ceylon is developed for the skin of color, so women of color should be able to use it and see really positive results. We have a lot of learning to do before we launch women-focused products but given the lack of options for women of color in skincare, there’s no reason we can’t offer something really amazing for them in the future.
Where can readers UK and Abroad find and shop Ceylon?
We currently only ship directly to customers in the UK as well as a number of EU countries via our website (ceylonskincare.com). However, we are constantly working to find the right relationships with retailers to increase the number of places where people can find Ceylon’s products.
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