So we’ve all heard of Dollar Shave Club, but did anybody think that what is good for the goose, might also be good for the gander?
Yes, somebody did. Friction Free Shaving, the world’s first razor delivery service designed exclusively for women, say that they are “on a mission to make it cleaner, easier and cheaper for you to shave your legs, underarms and any other areas.”
This week, the Cannock, Staffordshire based startup sealed a £1.3m Series A funding round led by Athene Capital; the firm says a large portion of the funds will be spent on a media campaign with the support of publisher Northern & Shell, whose stable of publications includes the Star, the Daily Star, and New! Magazine.
Last year, Friction Free raised £150k via the Seedrs crowdfunding platform, and the company says that since launching its first set of products 18 months’ ago it has acquired more than 8,000 subscribers – a figure that Friction Free co-founder Briar Keen believes the company will triple with the help of Northern & Shell, and the new investment.
Keen says that she is “thrilled” about the latest funding, whilst Lloyd Thomas, a Managing Partner at Athene Capital commented that “The management team at Friction Free Shaving have identified a huge and untapped opportunity in the market of women’s shaving subscriptions. We are very confident in their ability to drive rapid growth and are excited to be backing them.”
Richard Martin, Group Commercial Director at Northern & Shell says he has been “hugely impressed with the tenacity of the team at Friction Free Shaving”, and that “by working with us and our extensive portfolio of media assets, they have a unique opportunity to disrupt the sizable and growing women’s shaving market.” Rumoured to be worth more than £150 million in the UK alone.
Friction Free sends all subscribers a “chic” razor blade handle, followed by a set of fresh blades every month, from just £5 per month. The gender may have changed, but the business model is more or less the same as the wildly successful subscription shaving pioneer with the super viral ad campaign, Dollar Shave Club, which spawned a thousand imitation services, before Friction Free pivoted the formula to cater for the opposite sex.
Friction Free say that their philosophy is underpinned, if you like, by “4 pins” – avoiding “the feeling of a rusty blade against your stubbly legs (oh nothing beats it)”, avoiding being ripped off “since puberty” for overpriced razors, avoiding being caught short when a special occasion demands a shave, and helping to ease the burden of shaving, which, lets’ be honest, is a tedious task at best.
“Think of FFS as your BFF. Feel like a dolphin, and live Friction Free!” proclaims the FFS website.
All that remains is to choose your “shaviour” – will it be best priced Frankie (3 blade heads at £5 per month), or classy Samantha (5 at £7)?
And don’t worry if you find yourselves with too many spare blades; subscription can be paused at any time.