The Grooming Guru Awards 2012. Best Grooming Brand: Lab Series

Group Shot - Treat LOWggawrd12lIn many ways 2012 has been a disappointing year for male grooming. Certainly, as far as exciting launches and NPD are concerned it’s been one of the least inspiring in the 12+ years I’ve been writing about the subject.

Many brands have added just one or two products to their ranges or have renamed or repackaged them in an attempt to be seen to be doing something. Disappointingly, though, others have simply sat on their hands, presumably wanting to conserve resources and ride out hard times. Lab Series, however, defiantly continued to expand its range in 2012, innovating and shaping the future of the grooming market and leaving other brands playing catch-up in the process.

As well as an expansion of their premium MAX LS anti-ageing range, this year saw the launch of a Power Brightening range, targeting discolouration and uneven pigmentation, an Instant Skin Booster (to tackle fatigue) and their BB Tinted Moisturizer SPF35 – a multi-functional product hinting, no less, at the very future of male skincare. And they’re just a few of this year’s innovations. So my Best Grooming Brand 2012 award goes to Lab Series. Long may it lead the way.

For more information about Lab Series see www.labseries.co.uk

Coming tomorrow…the award for Best Problem Solver

Big Green Tree launch Virtus – their first ever men’s range

If you’re a fan of skincare that eschews chemical nasties in favour of traditional, natural ingredients and which is British (and in these tough economic times we should be supporting home-grown businesses) then make sure you check out Big Green Tree.

Based in Derbyshire the company specialise in hand made bath and body products, fragranced with top-quality essential oils and enriched with shea and cocoa butter and jojoba and almond oils.

And now they’ve launched their own dedicate men’s range Virtus (the word is latin for a virtue capturing courage and excellence). Launching with an Aftershave Balm, Body Wash and Shave Soap it features some of my favourite essential oils, including lavender, juniper and (my all time favourite) patchouli and is perfect for men who prefer natural ingredients over nanotechnology.

For more information and to buy Big Green Tree products go to www.biggreentreetrading.com