WHO WE ARE
J&L POGONOTROPHICS LLC is the “company” behind 2 specialty / boutique brands of grooming, personal care and home-life products built upon a single principle: Premium quality without the premium price nor pretense. We also strongly believe in the philosophy of Self-Care through Personal Care; a notion that the little things we do to make us look and feel good can help improve our overall self-esteem and promote a positive self-image.
We wish to bring back some of the old ways of business. Go back to a time where you invested in your business to make it grow; making sensible choices to organically grow. There was a time when a company’s profits went back in to the business to develop new and better products and adapt existing products to ever changing markets. We have avoided large capital investors that wish to make a quick return on their investment with no regard for the business, the products or the customers. Over the years since our inception we have seen a lot of flash-in-pan competitors that within a short period of time imploded under the weight of their expenses.
You likely have heard the corporate speak, “think outside the box”. Well, when all you can see is the box and you are bound by its walls you are instantly limited in your scope. We prefer to not be in a box. To have an open view to see the world around us. To take in all that we can see and hear to stimulate our creative process. If we had simply stayed inside a box and tried to only imagine what is outside it, we would never have been inspired to even begin with our first product. While those who stay inside a box become stagnant, we continue to innovate and redefine who we are.
OUR BRAND STORY
We are certainly not a “Lifestyle” brand; one that tries to influence or create appeal based upon an image of luxury or forced vision of a life aesthetic. We like to be product forward in our approach and use less to say more. We don’t subscribe to the belief that higher price must equate with higher quality. The “get what you paid for” reasoning is invalid when often we are buying an image of a lifestyle over the reality of the product. J&L is about simplicity, honesty and transparency in all that we do.
J&L Pogonotrophics is an innovator and leader in quality men’s grooming products. We may not be the biggest name out there, but over our time we have influenced many other beard makers who have tried to imitate but never truly can replicate what we offer. With over 8 years behind us, we are only getting stronger and better.
As the pioneer behind BEARD BUTTER, a salve like conditioning pomade, we made waves in the blossoming beard care industry. Before we could register the trademark we say other flash-in-the-pan brands make their own version and bigger brands copy it outright. If it says BEARD BUTTER without our branding, it is not BEARD BUTTER! Other innovations we introduced was having more than a single formula of beard oil. We still are the only brand that offers varying levels of conditioning in beard care products. Other products we made first, or made new again, are JUNK OIL, JUNK GREASE and SOLID COLOGNE. All of these were introduced before big name brands had even considered them. J&L may be new to you, but our impact has been felt on the beard care scene.
Diversification should always be a part of the plan; along with a willingness to adapt to an ever changing market. From the start we felt that having more than exclusively beard care products was important. Initially we focused purely on masculine skin and hair care, we soon found that all sorts of people were buying our products. By expanding our scent options we continued to invite non masculine presenting people to our brands. Because of this a name change was needed, for at least those items that carried a broader appeal.
THE ORIGINS OF JÖL
At first we settled on J+L Apothecary for our gender neutral line of personal care and grooming products. Never really comfortable with the name and the aesthetic it carries with it, we remained open to a more inclusive name that could embrace anything we decided to make or sell. We stumbled upon JÖL, a Nordic root word that means to celebrate and have a good time. Jolly and Yuletide originate from this word. The version we incorporated as a brand name also has a Afrikaans slang meaning of “You’re the bomb!” – having a “J” and “L” made it the perfect name for all that we do. J&L Pogonotrophics is our most masculine of products, JÖL is the branding for everything else.
JÖL is all about UTILITY + SIMPLICITY – an intersection for every day basics that do a needed job and does it well without gimmicks and unnecessary flair. Soaps, lotions, candles and more to come are built around this concept.
Another part of the brand is to be NATURAL. As we continue to grow we will become even more natural by striving to be more sustainable. Further reducing our use of plastics, include more organic and ethically sourced ingredients and further cut out the components that don’t matter – like colorants and filler ingredients.
JÖL means to have a good time, to celebrate. JÖL is about celebrating yourself, your home and those closest to you. It offers no magic that you don’t already posses.
Everything we do is about value. We don’t see ourselves as being a craft or artisan brand despite that being our size and operating model at this point. But when you compare us to our contemporaries we are less expensive when you stack us up against them. Our new BIG BAR soaps are a perfect example, our soaps are priced the same as many local craft makers around us, but our bars are significantly larger! Almost twice the size.
JC has pretty much been the one to work to build this up. He did not do it alone and has a team of people that come in to help make this dream a reality. JC has a background in culinary pursuits, the sciences, arts and music. Having been bearded since high school, he has over 30 years of bearding life experience. The struggles to keep a beard looking great and keeping it healthy led him to start this enterprise. He didn’t jump on a trend in growing a beard, or to take care of it.
He is also very socially aware and conscious of the world around him. His goals are to build a fully inclusive business and brand.
We created a separate page where you can meet some of the folks behind the curtain.
Plans for continued growth
While the COVID pandemic created numerous challenges for everyone and nearly every small business; we were afforded the time to revitalize our brands and upgrade much of what we do. This is a multi-stage process that started with rebranding everything that is not exclusively masculine under a new brand name and packaging. This was the birth of JÖL. We are poised to become a stronger contender in the market and have seen significant customer growth over the last year.
Half way into our 9th year we are feeling more confident that we can meet our goals of creating an all inclusive brand experience brick & mortar location. A single place to house all operational, manufacturing, fulfillment and retail activities. Having a home base that can place all that is J&L POGONOTROPHICS and JÖL.
Our vision is a factory store: a place where we can make and sell directly to our customers and offer more options through customized products. A place where you can see how we do what we do. A hub for a community where local groups can meet, mobile commuters can work comfortably when needed and friends can hang out for a spell. To support this concept, we may be interested in adding a cafe or drink/snack counter.
OPEN TO THE RIGHT INVESTOR(S)
To make this happen, we are willing to accept outside investment from those who really get what we are about and want us to keep it going. We are open to sensible, on brand, change; not reinvention. We have already built a trustworthy brand image with those that really get what we are about and what we are trying to do. As an investor, we would want you to help us retain that – not throw it away for your own vision. Your investment would mean you know we have something already and you only want to see us grow. During our time we have seen a lot of “by the book” current trend competitors come and go. It tell us that market trends are fickle and fake; out of touch with the reality of consumers as well as business.
Investment would allow us to increase marketing, improve our web and social media presence and procure better pricing on goods through stronger buying power; and polish our packaging and branding to look more commercial without changing our aesthetic. If you think you are interested, head to our contacts page to reach out.