Dermatect Inc is a New York based and USFDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) registered company who have been researching and producing skin care products since 2004. We reviewed Dermatect Inc’s Crotch Guard Skin Care Oil back in March. At the time I was somewhat surprised by the effectiveness of the product. Here’s a recap on Crotch Guard Skin Care Oil and how its developed.
Crotch Guard has been developed to protect skin by working with it. Dermatect tell us they apply a controlled process to highly refine hydrogenated polymers. Polymers are commonly used in cosmetics and skin conditioning products. This process results in the purest form of the formula as a silky, non-sticky emollient that is It’s designed to spread easily and is what gives skin the soft feel. It is also;
- Does not contain water
- Does not contain chemical dye
- Does not contain fragrances
- Absorbed quickly into the skin
Behind the Brand
Having used and reviewed this product, I contacted Tracie Sullivan – to ask her some questions on how the brand Crotch Guard Skin Care came about and some of the difficulties in launching such a unique concept.
Where did the idea for Crotch Guard Skin Care Oil come from?
In 2004 I discovered indoor cycling. From the first class – I was hooked! Unfortunately, my butt wasn’t so happy!
I purchased the padded shorts, I purchased the padded seat cover. At first, I went to a local bike shop and bought every lube they had available. Some provided relief, but it never lasted long. So I tried to create my own and just like most cyclists have done, I concocted homemade combinations of petroleum, ointments and creams to reduce the chafing.
And then I realized, I was trying to imitate what others have already placed on the market. Why? I hated the thick and sloppy mess and others might too, so I did some research to discover – that style of product is the only thing available. So it was game on!
At the risk of sounding crazy – I created a formula with the intention to be completely UNLIKE every other product on the market. Breaking all the rules can be a scary situation, but research, and knowledge pays off- this idea went from incredibly scary to very exciting, very quickly.
I wanted it to feel good on the skin, I wanted it to be irritant free, I wanted no mess. And I am pleased to announce I did just that!
Where did the name come from & who’s idea was it?
Totally my idea – I was sitting in my car at a traffic light, and it just popped into my head. Absolutely true! I immediately went home and searched the trademarks, and patents. And to my surprise, not everybody thought it was a great idea! My mother was shocked, my attorney begged me to please reconsider… my reply to them was the same. You don’t cycle – you don’t get it. If you were to ride, you would know… and I have used that phrase as my marketing tool since 2004. Over the years, some have claimed the word “Crotch” to be offensive – not so. A crotch simply is the meeting point between two limbs. A tree has a crotch!
Trust me, I have heard it all… we can be adults, I have a sense of humor! After all, I named my product Crotch Guard! It certainly gets the conversation started, and it DEFINITELY explains what the product does, so what’s wrong with a little fun?
What has been the toughest challenge to get to market?
There are always challenges for new businesses. Funding, branding, finding actual customers are all challenging. The word “challenge” by definition means “an attempt for a task or situation that test’s an individual’s abilities”. I personally believe, it is not the challenge that can make or break you – it is “how” you handle the challenge that can make or break you. Research, research, research, be fully knowledgeable, then you will be prepared for those challenges. And when you think you know everything – listen. Yes “listen”. Because business never stops, its flexible, trends change, opinions change, science changes.
For example, when I first brought Crotch Guard to the market, I offered a 4 oz (118 ml) bottle. Had great success, then a customer said, it’s just big to carry on a ride. I listened, and the 1 oz (29.5 ml) bottle was created. Crotch Guard has been available in the USA and Canada for a while now. When re-ordering I noticed most customers ordered 2 bottles at a time. I listened, and am pleased to announce that a new refill size 8 oz (236 ml) bottle will be available in June 2016! By meeting this need, the refill size bottle actually saves the customer money!
Competitive products have been around for a long time. They are familiar – cyclists can find comfort in familiarity, and some cyclists find comfort in the routine of the familiar goop. The toughest challenge bringing Crotch Guard to market – is changing the mindset. The best feature of Crotch Guard Skin Care Oil is the absorption. I understand how some cyclists are skeptical to make the change from familiar goop – when they never had the option for clean and natural.
How long does it take to get approval to launch a skincare product in US/UK?
Crotch Guard falls under the category of skin care, or cosmetic. In the USA, the regulatory boards for cosmetics the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the government are separate entities. FDA regulations require registration to ensure products and their ingredients are considered safe to the general public. Keeping labeling uniformity. My company, Dermatect Inc, the laboratory used in developing the formulas, and my products, Crotch Guard Skin Care Oil, Amputect Skin Care Oil and Dermatect Skin Care Oil, including their ingredients are all registered with the FDA.
Dermatect Inc is also registered with the Voluntary Cosmetic Registration Program (VCRP). The VCRP assists USFDA in carrying out its responsibility to regulate cosmetics and assess ingredient safety. We are pleased to announce that as of 2010 every ingredient and every product offered by Dermatect Inc is now developed, produced and manufactured in the United States.
In the UK the regulatory bodies and the government are a combined agency, and registration is mandated through the law, which can take slightly more time.
Every product is different, every case is different, registrations and filings can take months even years before completion. We are currently waiting for approvals to be completed so we can offer Crotch Guard Skin Care Oil into retail, and wholesale suppliers throughout the UK.
Do you cycle yourself?
YES!! Love the sport! Luckily for me my business keeps me in touch with the cycling world! I used to join group rides, and very often ride during charity events and races. During the summer months, the local track has open races on Friday evenings. That is always fun. Unfortunately, I do not have the time to participate on a team, although I sponsor many!
You have just launched a UK website – what’s next?
During the holidays of 2015, I offered a FREE sample promotion, with the hopes it will boost sales for the end of the year. The offer exploded through social media postings, especially on Twitter. But I was unprepared for the request from international regions! Of course I honored these requests at a great expense (and loss) as shipping one 29.5 ml bottle costs nearly $11 USD each! Shipping overseas can be troublesome, as many packages can take weeks to arrive or simply be lost or rejected due to huge customs fees.
I was approached by many to carry the product, and have secured a relationship with Les Stoner of PedalBuddies. On April 22, we launched crotchguard-uk.com a product specific website. It is very exciting, as we build the brand of Crotch Guard, the site provides a convenient location to interact with potential customers, details fantastic reviews from those based in the region, (yours included!), and offers an events page to post local races and announcements.
What piece of advice would you give to a new business?
As I mentioned above, knowledge is key. Don’t try to run before you can walk, understand your business and your market and competitors in that market. Understand your customers, and their needs- and listen to those needs. Without customers you have no business. And do whatever it takes to keep those customers, as I discovered absorbing the costs of thousands of dollars for international shipping expenses – those customers appreciated that and hit social media — hard. Building a solid customer relationship can be challenging, but that relationship is in fact priceless.
I’d like to say a very big thank you to Tracie and her team for taking the time to speak to AATR and giving us a real insight into the Crotch Guard brand. If you would like more information about the Dermatect Inc company or the Crotch Guard skin care oil range, check out – crotchguard-uk.com or dermatect.com