Joon Haircare says entry into SEA salon channels important to cement ‘legitimacy’

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Joon Haircare is seeking distribution among South East Asian hair salons to reinforce its position as a professional-level hair care brand. [Joon]
Joon Haircare is seeking distribution among South East Asian hair salons to reinforce its position as a professional-level hair care brand. [Joon]

Related tags Hair care Hair Shampoo Scalp care

US-based Joon Haircare is seeking distribution among South East Asian hair salons to reinforce its position as a professional-level hair care brand.

The brand inked an exclusive deal with Sephora to make its regional debut in March 2020. However, the launch was hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the pandemic over, co-founder Shiva Tavakoli told CosmeticsDesign-Asia ​that the firm was excited to kickstart its Asian expansion.

“[2020] wasn’t the best time to launch anywhere honestly because we couldn’t be there in person, and everything was closed. Now we’re ready to come back and come back strong,”​ said Tavakoli.

Today, it is available through Sephora in Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.

However, Tavakoli said entering local salon channels was imperative for the brand.

“It’s very important to our brand because Joon is a salon brand. And that channel gives us legitimacy, even if you’re selling over retail because not all hair care brands can enter the professional channel.

“Being in a salon helps to grow your brand gradually. You have the hairstylists that help to educate the consumer, whereas in retail there’s a lot of focus on marketing. There are pros and cons, but we want to expand [into salons] because that’s how we started as well.”

In the meantime, the company is strengthening its brand awareness in SEA with the Sephora launch of its latest product, the Sumac Scalp Scrub and Exfoliating Shampoo.

“There’s a lot of interest in hair care and we’ve seen it moving towards scalp care. It’s booming at the moment with the skinification of scalp movement. People now know that scalp is an extension of the skin so if you take care of your scalp, you’ll have stronger hair,”​ said Tavakoli.

“We love the SEA market. The consumer here is very beauty-centric and they have a finger on the pulse of the trends. They also really care about their skin and scalp is an extension of skin, so we really wanted to focus on our scalp scrub for this market.”

A family affair

Joon is a hair care line based on Persian beauty rituals and traditional ingredients like saffron. It was launched at the end of 2017 by Shiva and brother Kayvon Tavakoli, who grew up in the hair business.

“Our father had around 150 to 200 salons at one point. But he wasn’t happy with a lot of the products. He started a hair care laboratory, where we grew up helping out. My father had several brands that were focused on the salon market and weren’t in retail,” ​said Tavakoli.

The siblings saw a gap in the market for a salon-grade hair care range that was inspired by their Persian heritage.

“We paired ancient Persian secrets from our grandmother's kitchen table with modern chemistry from our father’s hair care background,” ​said Tavakoli.

The brand relied heavily on the professional channel to gain traction when it first launched. It later found success with a wider audience thanks to TikTok, where its Saffron Hair Elixir Oil quickly gained a cult following.

“I think our saffron hair oil really resonated with people because it works for many different hair types, not just Middle Eastern hair. It’s lightweight and fast absorbing, making it good for fine and thick hair types,” ​said Tavakoli.

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