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Dollar Shave Club Targets Another Set of Cheeks

The start-up wants to be the go-to spot for men's grooming needs. CEO Michael Dubin explains a new product launch to further the plan.
Michael Dubin, founder and CEO of Dollar Shave Club, explains how he plans to dominate the men's grooming niche.

Dollar Shave Club founder and CEO Michael Dubin has a plan: to dominate the toiletries industry for men--though he probably wouldn't phrase it that way. After all, "toiletries" sounds girly--and that's something the testosterone-laden hygiene company works hard to avoid.

Dollar Shave Club launched with, not surprisingly, a shave product: "f---king great" razor blades sold on a subscription plan, to be exact. In March 2012, the company's hilarious DIY advertisement starring Dubin shot the start-up to viral video fame--and landed it a spot on Inc.'s 2013 Audacious Companies list.

On Tuesday, the start-up launched its next big product in the scheme to dominate men's bathroom shelves: One Wipe Charlies, a line of cleansing tissues for the masculine derriere.

"They're butt wipes," Dubin says, in case you didn't catch that.

Selling men's wipes may sound silly--but Dubin is quick to point to the fact that the U.S. toilet paper market is $9 billion. "By comparison, men's shaving and grooming is only $6 billion," he says. 

He's also armed with a key stat: 51 percent of men ages 18 to 45 already use baby wipes--in secret--to clean up, Dubin notes in a blog post on the Dollar Shave website. A large part of staking out territory in the male bathroom involves re-branding products in a way that appeals specifically to men, he says.

His go-to methodology: Humor, of course.

Today's release of One Wipe Charlies was accompanied by a signature commercial starring--who else?--Dubin himself.

Unlike the razors, the wipes won't be sold on subscription; they're $4 for a pack of 40.

Last updated: Jun 4, 2013


Francesca Fenzi reports on entrepreneurship, technology and small business news from San Francisco. Her work has previously appeared in TIME, USA Today, Pop City and The Northside Chronicle.

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