Hubert and Anthony Tsai will tell you that they play hard and work hard, and have always been drawn to luxury—fast cars, hot restaurants and high-end watches. But shaving was a let down. Even the most sophisticated and high-tech disposable razors in the marketplace were a disappointment to them.
“When it came to shaving and skin care maintenance, there was nothing appealing for us to use. Everything in the market was too traditional. We don't eat with plastic knives and forks at home so why shave with a $5 plastic razor?” asked Anthony Tsai, president of TwinLuxe LLC, Irvine, CA.
So, he and his brother decided to create something that “we ourselves wanted to use and which we thought others like us—successful young professional men—would want to use too,” he said.
The goal was to modernize the look and feel of the old school English barbershop razor set, a complete makeover for the brush, razor and stand.
The TwinLuxe Arctic Shave Set.
The shave sets incorporate industrial materials and finishes from advanced technologies (think fine wristwatches, exotic automobiles and surgical instruments). In fact, to create a shave set that would appeal to today’s tech-savvy “iPhone and iPad users,” the Tsais turned to Marek Djordjevic, the brains behind the exterior design of the Rolls Royce Phantom.
“He was introduced to us by a family friend who told us that he would be the perfect guy to go to in terms of luxury brand development. We worked so well together and were happy with his work that we ended up working together on all aspects of the TwinLuxe brand,” said Hubert, who serves as chief executive officer.
Instant Rescue Gel.
For the skin care offerings, TwinLuxe hired a private lab as well as an experienced European cosmetic consultant to help develop its own proprietary formulations from scratch, according to Anthony. Djordjevic also worked on the skin care package design.
Hubert’s favorite product is the Soothing Face Balm, an aftershave balm/daily moisturizer, which he says is non-greasy, lightweight and has long-lasting effects on the skin.
“I have used many, many moisturizers and balms in my lifetime and I have not found one to be better in product performance and efficacy than my own Soothing Face Balm.It is simply the best moisturizer/balm out there on the market,” he told Happi.
Like a parent, Anthony hard a hard time picking his favorite, but eventually settled on the Smooth Shave Cream. He lauded it for its luxurious in texture. “It feels like buttercream cake frosting,” he said.
The other products in the line include Renewing Face Wash & Scrub, Booster Serum, Instant Rescue Gel, Instant Energy Mist and Daily Detox Face Wash & Mask. All are based on a powerful blend of Asian botanicals that have been clinically proven to help strengthen skin tone, improve skin smoothness and promote anti-aging properties, according to the company.
Having rolled out in late September 2010, the TwinLuxe line is now stocked at three retail spots in California (Beverly Hills and Los Angeles) and another in Greenwich, CT, as well as online at twinluxe.com and luxury4him.com.
According to the brothers, they have been successful in finding strategic partners and are in the process of getting the TwinLuxe Shaving Skincare line to be in spas and hotels as well as luxury retail stores around the U.S.
And the Tsais are also taking steps to get the brand noticed by the “in” crowd. For example, its Shaving Skincare Essentials Gift Set (a box set with Booster Serum, Smooth Shave Cream and Soothing Face Balm) will be in the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards Gift Bag given to presenters and performers.
As the they navigate the high-end men’s grooming market, the Tsais have a trailblazer to study in Zirh and The Art of Shaving—both of which were acquired by P&G in 2009. But don’t expect the Tsais to sell anytime soon.
“At the stage where TwinLuxe is now, we are not interested in a buyout.But in the future when we think an established global partner or luxury conglomerate can help TwinLuxe expand into markets where we couldn’t have done so by ourselves, we will consider all options,” said Hubert. “Right now our goal is to grow the TwinLuxe brand to be a luxury lifestyle brand recognized worldwide, and we are well on our way to achieving that goal.”