How Luxury Hair Brand RAINCRY Is Making Sustainability A Priority

 

A version of this story first appeared on Forbes.com

Clean and eco-friendly beauty has gained steady popularity over the years, but to Feisal Qureshi, founder and creative director of RAINCRY, environmental beauty is not just a fad; it’s a core tenet of the brand. Whether it’s sourcing environmentally-friendly materials or crafting products in artisanal workshops, RAINCRY is committed to creating luxury products that are both high-performing and sustainably-created.

To get to know more about RAINCRY’s products and practices, we asked Qureshi himself to share his thoughts on why heritage items are so important, how RAINCRY is focusing on environmental efforts, and more:


On the importance of heritage items and why people should invest in quality: 

We live in an age of “stuff”—consumer commodities created through mass—production, designed with perceived-obsolescence and/or engineered-obsolescence in mind. Most products do not solve problems particularly well and are quite functional, and not really built for quality or performance. Today, the consumer cycle usually follows: the purchase of low-cost items, used for a for a short duration of time, disposed of, and then replaced. This product cycle, however, is a recent phenomenon.

Throughout history, there have been craftsmen and women that are specialist-masters (whether tradespeople or “widget” makers) that have acquired detailed knowledge and skills. This know-how was acquired through the “passing down” of practical expertise that would have been accumulated over hundreds (sometimes thousands) of years of trial, error, and experience. The result of their efforts are customized products that solves problems better than most and are higher-performing, better-made, aesthetically-pleasing and lasts longer—a degree of excellence that is RAINCRY’s definition of quality. 

In today’s world, investing in quality also helps to decrease waste at landfills and preserves this critical knowledge, experience and skills by allowing them to be passed down to future generations, and providing work in local communities. RAINCRY uses some of the last brush makers left in Europe, some of which have over 125 years of experience.

On brands that are conscious about the environment and their carbon footprint:

I think when looking at the environment, many brands are taking a deeper approach to the environment and understanding that it is important to distinguish between cause and effect. For example: climate change is caused by people, so there is a need to treat the problem (change people’s behavior) as well as finding a solution to reverse climate change. 

I remember years ago in Africa, a game warden explained to me that to help stop poaching, you had to address the poverty with locals. Locals were not poaching for greed but rather a way to put food on the table and feed their families. If they had a steady income, there would be no need to risk their lives. So the takeaway was: feed the people, and you will not only help people but also the “rhino”, or the rainforest, or however you want to apply it. This is the cause and effect that I think is so necessary to be a “green” brand. 

As a rule, RAINCRY focuses on causes and charities that help people earn a good living. We support many different craftsmen and women and employ their skills to create products of quality that require less replenishment or less waste in landfills. We also ensure that all of the workers are fairly compensated, regardless of jurisdiction, and do our best to use materials that are sustainable, products and formulations that are as biodegradable, and make all of our packaging recyclable. 

In the near future, we are looking at creating a foundation and/or enter a partnership with an established charity that can really help spread and reinforce this message.


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