Harry’s launch ‘Shave With Pride Set’

It’s all too easy to be cynical about the launch of Pride-themed products these days – after all, so many companies cash in on the annual celebrations now – but the new Shave With Pride Set from award-winning grooming brand Harry’s is a bit different. I was lucky enough to be privy to the creation and design of this set and know first hand the level of care, thought and meticulous attention to detail that went into the razor, packaging and the overall campaign of which it’s a part.

Housed in a special presentation box designed by acclaimed graphic design duo Craig & Karl (one you’ll want to keep to house all your bits and bobs in once you’ve removed the contents), the iridescent ‘rainbow’ razor is that rarest of things: a Pride-themed product that’s useful, helpful to the community (100% of the profits from it go to LGBTQ+ charities like the Peter Tatchell Foundation) and genuinely cool to boot. What makes this razor so special is that the design process ensures that no two handles are exactly the same: like the customer it’s aimed at, each one is a one-off and unique. Which is rather appropriate for a company that genuinely celebrates individuality and diversity.

If the set were the extent of Harry’s involvement with this year’s Pride festivities that would probably be enough. The company’s engagement, however, runs a little deeper than that. As well as the limited edition shaving set, they’re also offering support for the community in the shape of their ‘& Proud’ campaign, featuring the likes of TV presenter Dr. Ranj Singh and Queer Eye’s break-out star Jonathan Van Ness, which encourages members of the LGBTQ+ community to reject harmful labels in favour of ones they choose themselves.  (Van Ness describes himself as a “Hair Flipping Free Spirit & Proud” while Singh is a “Super-Nerdy Gaysian”.)

Finally, following on from the company’s detailed Masculinity Report last year, Harry’s have commissioned Ipsos/Mori to conduct a ‘Proud Allies’ survey which examines the relationship between the straight and LGBTQ+ communities in 2018 – the results of which are to be published shortly. Having clocked them already I can tell you they make for very interesting reading.

Taken as a whole, this considered, multifaceted approach shows a level of committment rare in Pride-themed campaigns. As for the Shave With Pride set itself, it’s great if you happen to be from the LGBTQ+ community and are looking for something to zhuzh up your shaving routine or, indeed, happen to be a proud straight ally who’s looking for the perfect gift for an LGBTQ+ pal. Basic message?  Give with pride, shave with pride, support with pride.

Harry’s Shave With Pride Set is available for a limited time from harrys.com priced £24.

 

 

 

 

Grooming Guru makes PinkNews.co.uk’s most influential LGBT Twitter users of 2011 list

Hello and welcome to the first of my posts for 2012. It’s been a while since I posted last (I was taking a few weeks off to consume Maltesers and Licorice Allsorts) but the year certainly ended on a high with news that Grooming_Guru (my Twitter alias) made PinkNews.co.uk‘s most influential LGBT Twitter users of 2011 list.

Nestling at No. 31 I’m extremely flattered and honoured to be included. Mind you, not everyone is as impressed. One critic of the list publically describes those of us on it as as nothing more than a bunch of ‘mouthy twats’. This clearly cannot be true. I know this for a fact because if it was I would most definitely have cracked the Top 10.

To follow me on Twitter click here

Real men wear face masks don’t ya know?

Much has been said about the constant need for male grooming brands to ‘butch up’ their products to make them acceptable to the average bloke in the street and though we’ve come a long way, most brands still use hyper-masculine brand ambassadors to give everyone else permission to use ‘beauty’ products. If you want proof this trend is still going strong just check out the campaign for Montagne Jeunesse’s new face packs for men.

Featuring five separate masks to give skin a deep clean, tackle blackheads, perk up morning-after skin, rescue tired eyes and deal with blemishes, the masks have been ‘put through their paces’ by the Cardiff Blues Rugby Team. So clearly, if they past the locker room test they must be ok.

Ironically, of all sports, rugby always comes across as the most metrosexual one to me, with the majority of players comfortable enough in their own masculinity not to give a damn about appearing ‘girlie’.  Ex-Lion Gareth Thomas’ coming out was greeted with a chorus of  ‘so whats’ and Ben Cohen, though straight, is a champion of LGBT equality. So the use of  rugby players in campaigns like this strikes me as being both perfectly natural but surprisingly tame. Imagine the impact if the line up above had been Millwall players. And how everyone would have reacted then. Just saying.

The five masks are available from www.montagnejeunesse.com priced £1.09