Powder power: Singapore start-up to launch eco-conscious hair care brand with waterless shampoos

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

The Powder Shampoo to launch a range of waterless shampoos to tackle the issue of plastic waste and water scarcity. [The Powder Shampoo]
The Powder Shampoo to launch a range of waterless shampoos to tackle the issue of plastic waste and water scarcity. [The Powder Shampoo]

Related tags waterless Hair care start-ups

A Singapore-based start-up is set to launch a range of waterless shampoos to tackle the issue of plastic waste and water scarcity in 2022 after delays brought about by COVID-19.

The Powder Shampoo was established this year by CEO Lynn Tan, a veteran in the hair care industry who has established a successful beauty distribution business in Asia over the past two decades.

She was also the former managing director of Ales Groupe Singapore, the company behind Phyto Haircare and Lierac Skincare.

“In recent years, I’ve become more aware of the facts and figures on climate change. The more I read, the more I knew, the more it bothered me. I started to question the role I play in the ecosystem as a distributor, if I have been part of the problem for the past twenty years?” ​she said.

Tan told CosmeticsDesign-Asia​ that she thought it was finally time to harness her experience in the market and develop her own hair care brand that could tackle the pressing issue of plastic waste in the industry.

“There’s not a lot I can do as a distributor. I don’t have a say in what [the manufacturers] put inside the products or how they package it. I knew the only way for me to contribute was to come up with something on my own.”

The decision to be a plastic-free brand led to the development of a waterless shampoo in a powder format that activates with water. 

Lynn Portrait-2

“With water in the formulation, it becomes a big challenge to be plastic-free. I could have created a soap bar, but it’s not as enjoyable, I think. To me, it’s a pleasure to wash my hair and soap bars don’t give me the same enjoyment,” ​said Tan.

With a waterless format, the company was able to package it in an aluminium bottle and paper refill bags that do not have any coatings or plastic layers that make it impossible to recycle.

According to Tan, the powder formulas lather and foam just like conventional liquid shampoos and contain essential oils which she believes are an important component that make hair washing enjoyable.

Most importantly, this new format does not take away the convenience of conventional plastic-packaged liquid shampoos.

“Going plastic-free is a hard choice. Being a mum myself, I understand you need things to be convenient, you need things to be fast. When they go to a store and see all this plastic around them, they can’t help it. With this powder shampoo, it's easy to use. Just add water and it will lather and foam like you are used to,” ​said Tan.

Gearing up for launch

The Powder Shampoo is produced in Singapore in its own manufacturing facility. It will launch and ship globally in early 2022 with four variants that tackle dandruff, hair loss, excess oil, and sensitive scalps.

The formulas are vegan and draw on 20 botanically derived ingredients, five micro-encapsulated essential oils with its proprietary Thyme-Capsuled technology.

Moving forward, the company has plans to expand the range with powdered conditioner, head-to-toe wash, and scalp treatments.

“I’m not planning to make products for the sake of it; there has to be a real need. And whatever range is created, it will have to fulfil our values… Again, we are plastic free, so if I can’t find the right container or packaging for the product, I won’t make it until I can,” ​said Tan.

The company also has plans to target markets such as the US and Europe, where the market for sustainable beauty products is in greater demand, said Tan.

To introduce the brand to those markets, the company has recently set up crowdfunding campaigns on Kickstarter and Indiegogo to drum up brand awareness and pick up more insight into its marketing potential.

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