After 17 years of snipping, buzzing, shaving and cutting hair while working as a barber, Mary Elliott knows what men want in a skin care routine. “They want it to be simple,” she explains. She started making her own lazy-guy-friendly products and launched Locust + Ash in 2014, a line of beard dry oils, soaps, aftershave and more. “I had enough knowledge on how their skin and hair work,” says Elliott. “I knew I could make what I really needed.” Great Lengths: In the early stages of creating her products, Elliott sent trial batches of her beard dry oils, facial moisturizers and almost all her goods to friends throughout the country to test out. “I sent it to people in Seattle, Austin and Washington, D.C., — to all kinds of dudes who live in cold and hot weather,” she says. “I kind of went overboard, but I wanted to be sure people would want it.” Easy Breezy: Elliott is always looking for products herself that have multiple uses. “I don’t want to do 15 different things,” she laughs. “I’m the one using a moisturizer with a serum and a tint.” That’s something she knew she had to consider when marketing to men. “It’s just the way they are. They want two to three products that will do 10 things.” Take her black pepper and oak moss all-in-one shampoo bar ($9). It’s full of conditioners so men can wash their hair, face and beard with it. Beauty Benefits: Elliott uses hemp oil in all of her items. “There are oils that just sit on top of the skin, but this will absorb and help repair your hair or skin,” she says. “These aren’t just styling products.” Careful Chemist: Elliott is constantly reading up on ingredients that help fight wrinkles, acne, razor burn and more. You’ll find a recipe book of different oils in her Canton home lab. “I’m naturally curious about ingredients and wondering what would happen if I put these two things together,” she says.
Find It: Buy Locust + Ash at Apotheclaire Salon in Akron, Daugherty Hair Co. in Massillon and the Massillon Museum gift shop.
Sure, you can use this coffee- and leather-scented dry beard oil ($16) to tame and tailor your facial hair and prevent splint ends, but also try massaging it into the rest of your face to quench parched skin.
More info: locustandash.com