Nashville Entrepreneur Michael Reddish Of Whistle Punk Men’s Grooming Co.
Think natural skincare—essential oils, scrubs and creams—and it’s unlikely that an image of masculine lumberjacks in flannel garb comes to mind. But one creative entrepreneur in Nashville thinks differently. Michael Reddish, founder of Whistle Punk Men’s Grooming Co., started producing his own beard oil when the bulk of the products he could find contained worrisome ingredients. “I was buying beard oil, and I was concerned about what was in it,” he says, thinking back to the birth of his beard-lover’s business. “What I was making was better than what I was buying.”
Since launching his online company, Reddish has been able to tap into a specific niche, and his dreams of creating and selling organic goodness to the “dangerously handsome” continue to grow as Reddish prepares to open his first brick-and-mortar shop this winter. Like the freethinking, inventive man the Whistle Punk brand embodies, Reddish is somewhat of a pioneer himself. When he’s not working his 9-5 job in financial services, the gung-ho business owner spends evenings and weekends with his wife, Vicky, creating the product, building orders and labeling bottles. Plus, they also tackle the creative side of the business.
“We always have our eyes out for interesting articles and people to collaborate with,” says Reddish. Fueled by the pulse of Nashville’s creative heartbeat, Reddish draws his inspiration from community members and other small-business owners. “Nashville is very supportive,” he says. “This is a thriving community, and we feel very blessed to be a part of it.”
When asked what makes Whistle Punk stand out in the somewhat competitive hair-and-skincare industry, Reddish replies confidently, “We cater to guys who don’t want to sacrifice style and care, but are also concerned about what they’re putting on their face and in their bodies.” Created in small batches, the collection of carefully curated ingredients is bottled with this simple mission in mind. It’s what Reddish believes sets his business apart from others in the industry: locally sourced organic ingredients, nourishing components and a little southern T.L.C. made specifically for men. Quality over quantity is key.
Reddish looks forward to carrying a wide variety of Whistle Punk products in his new Nashville store. “We’d like to be a one-stop shop,” he says. In addition to the classic beard oils and chemical-free skincare, the shop will also sell hair product for styling, body washes, shampoos and apparel. It’s an exciting endeavor for the Reddish duo: opening a real shop where they can interact with the customers daily. However, Reddish also recognizes the challenges of launching a brick and mortar while maintaining a strong online presence. “The work is constant,” he says.
The resiliency of this small business is commendable. And despite the long hours spent bottling beard oil in his kitchen, it’s clear that Reddish is in love with the work.
Images courtesy of Lisa Diederich Photography.