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courtesy of Instagram/@karamo

Watch out JVN, Queer Eye’s Karamo is getting into the grooming game


TextAlex Peters

The culture expert is branching out into beauty with a new line for bald men

Does Jonathan Van Ness need to watch his back? The Essie ambassador and grooming expert on Netflix’s Queer Eye might have some competition because co-star Karamo Brown is branching out into the beauty game.

The culture expert has co-founded a new brand Mantl which will offer grooming products for bald and balding men – an issue Brown has struggled with himself. “Seasons one and two (of Queer Eye), we taped them and I had a hairline that was fake,” Brown told WWD. “Then at the premiere, I was bald. It was because I had always been bald, but I finally just embraced it.” 

“So many men, whether they are thinning or balding, are having the same issues (where) it is affecting their self-esteem and the way they deal with their families, friends and careers. The goal (of Mantl) is to help men feel confident in a healthy and positive way.”

The brand launches this week with four products – a face and scalp cleanser, a moisturiser, “no-shine sheets,” and a chemical SPF. “Losing your hair, you are losing the barrier from sun protection — and in general, protection of the scalp,” says Irene Kong, Mantl’s co-founder and chief product officer. The products all contain herb extracts aimed at balancing the biomes of both the face and scalp and work with all skin tones. 

The products will also, undoubtedly, be popping up on Queer Eye very soon. “I want the people on our show to be part of the Mantl community. The minute we get to the next season, I’m bringing these,” Brown says. He also reassured everyone that the brand is Jonathan Van Ness-approved.

“(Van Ness) has always complimented me on my skin, my grooming, so it’s nice to have his support,” says Brown. “This was a natural fit for me because everything starts with your self-esteem. If there’s anything that’s going to help build your self-esteem that I know I can be a part of to make people feel better about living better lives, then I’m gonna do it.”

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