Váli is a new startup company with one mission; to get men to love shaving. Founded in Sweden after the Co-Founders struggled with razor burn and nasty bumps from modern multi-blade razors. Looking for an alternative they discovered that the old-fashioned safety razor, using just one blade, was enough to give a close shave. Here we sit down with them to find out more about their product.
Tell us a little about yourself, where did the idea come from?
“We are two brothers from Sweden that started this business about two years ago. Our problem has always been that we’ve had the unlucky combination of heavy stubble and sensitive skin. Using a multi-blade razor would just pull and tug on the hair and cause the skin to feel like it’s on fire afterwards. And when the razor burn finally would settle I would wake up the next day with a breakout of nasty razor bumps that itched like crazy. After several years of this I finally decided that there has to something better out there for guys like me. And with that conviction and being very much of an entrepreneurial person, I started Váli Company & Brands together with my brother. Today we sell successfully in different channels in Sweden and want to expand internationally, starting with the UK.”
Is a 100-year old safety razor design truly better?
“Yes for guys like me with heavy stubble. Going over that stubble with a multi-blade razor, where the blades sit very tight, it’s just impossible. The hair whiskers get stuck between the blades. You then also have to go over the same area multiple times causing razor burn. And another thing I have to point out, our products aren’t 100-years old. The razor handle itself is probably the same as it was about 100-years ago which gives me a very nostalgic feeling. However, the blade itself is way sharper than any blade your grandfather would have used and our de facto blades use 21st century patented technology and modern factory processes. This all means you basically don’t need all these additional blades to achieve a close shave.”
Why are Váli products sold as a subscription?
“Well, simply because the razor business makes sense as a subscription service. We are also a small startup company with high ambitions. We are not excluding any future retail sales though. But for now, we want to offer world-class customer service, be able to ship for free, have a great trial-offer for our starter kit, and educate you about how to use our products because the safety razor along with our whole portfolio does take some time to master. We also obviously want to market ourselves, produce high-quality products and all of this cost money and time. So, we found that a subscription where we have a long-term relationship with our niche customer group suits us and them best.”
How did you decide on the brand name?
“We get this question a lot. I have an interest in history and the name is basically from old Norse. A Norse god, son of god Oden. We didn’t want to name ourselves Oden, that would just be to cliché. And the word Váli can mean a lot of different things to different people in different cultures. It means something different for Iranians, Indians, Muslims, Russians etc. So we thought that a simple four letter name that’s internationally viable was just wonderful.”
Any words on the future of your brand?
“We don’t just want to sell a razor and blades. We actually have four other products and we want all our products to be sustainable, good to the environment and to your skin. We want our customers to feel good about the fact that our stainless blades can be 100% recycled, our shaving cream doesn’t use chemical propellants, our shaving brushes aren’t made with animal hair and we completely exclude sulfates and parabens.”
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