By Amy Anderson
Let me introduce you to the Ferrari of the hairbrush industry. Sold both online and in top retail outlets such as Harvey Nichols and Fenwicks, London-based brand Rock & Ruddle make luxurious hairbrushes that come in a whole host of bright and stylish designs. As a big fan of the quirky brand, I was really excited to be given the opportunity to have a chat with its founders, Alexandra Rock and Jackie Ruddle, about how they got started in the industry and what’s next for the company.
As fate would have it, the loss of a trusty hairbrush was what ultimately led Alexandra and Jackie to set up the company, which has since sold over 10,000 units, back in 2011. “We discovered there was a gap in the market when I accidentally lost my hairbrush and couldn’t find a replacement that was both stylish and of great quality,” explains Alexandra. “Most hairbrushes that look fun and bright are made of cheap plastic whilst most quality ones tend to be either plain black or wooden. We wanted to create a product that looked fun and stylish but was also good enough to keep your hair in top condition. The most difficult thing about setting up the company was probably finding a factory that was able to make the end product as good as we both envisaged it to be but we got there in the end.”
Each brush sold by Rock and Ruddle features fine, natural Boar bristles which are fantastic for leaving hair looking sleek and feeling smooth. There are also 14 different fun designs to choose from (I went for the gorgeous Stars and Stripes one and it looks even better in real life than it does online), so there is definitely one to suit all tastes.
The brand was picked up by large department stores in it’s infancy, after the range was showcased at a London trade show when they were only 2 months old and they are also sold on their own website, www.rockandruddle.co.uk .“We often get emails from customers telling us how much they love the brushes,” says Jackie. “It’s really rewarding when we hear things like that as it makes all the hard work we put in at the beginning worth it.”
Both Jackie and Alexandra spent several years gaining valuable experience in the beauty industry whilst working for a leading cosmetics company, before they set up Rock and Ruddle. “We both had a lot of experience in areas such as marketing and product launches,” explains Alexandra. “This was really useful when it came to setting up the business but, at the same time, we’ve had to learn so much. You wouldn’t believe how much work goes into creating a new brand but the whole process is really interesting and exciting!”
So, what’s next for Rock and Ruddle now that they’ve conquered Great Britain? Oh, you know, just world domination. “One of the main things we want to do is expand into the international market further,” reveals Jackie. “We’ve already launched in Holland, Belgium, Luxemburg, Australia, New Zealand and New York but we’d love to have our brushes stocked all over the world.”
To find out more about Rock and Ruddle, visit www.rockandruddle.co.uk