The Carlsberg Trifecta - A Beauty Series

If you’ve already read about it recently, then odds are a few eyebrows were raised and you continued scrolling through other beer news, labeling this an April Fools’ joke. Phrases like “Carlsberg launches a line of grooming products, all made with Beer” and “Beer Shampoo, anyone?” shouldn’t exist but apparently the Carlsberg folks found a way. One laboratory, a slew of science teams, and many experiments later, we can now apply a triple-trifecta of ingredients – barley, hops & yeast – which are full of vitamin B and silicium properties, straight onto our bodies.

I spoke with Jens Jermiin, VP of Digital & Media, at their Danish headquarters are found out a few interesting things. His insights were very optimistic for the growth of this new product line. Their market research indicated a high likelihood for strong product demand amongst men, and their strategy is to push this product globally, starting with the US market (update: their product is currently sold out on their website).

As one of the leading brewery groups in the world, the Carlsberg Laboratory was first established in 1875 (now a subsidiary of the Carlsberg Foundation) and has expanded into multiple departments of Chemistry and Physiology.

“Quality has always been one of the founding pillars of our company. We’re always looking to create and produce with the best possible ingredients. In turn, we wanted to find a way to tell this story – a journey on the focus of quality. I think a Beauty series for Men will spark a conversation about the quality of ingredients. This is now actually “good” for the user when we talk about the shampoo for example. Previously, anything over a 2% alcohol is about the consumption and less about the ingredients themselves. This way, we can elevate the ingredients for what they truly are.”

And keep in mind that each 250mL bottle literally has 0.5L of beer, freeze-dried into powder (their signature lager), that’s mixed in with an array of organic ingredients. Luckily, I got a chance to try these out so that you won’t have to wonder what they’re like. I also have no expertise in the formal areas of ‘said’ products, other than the fact that I’ve been using them everyday. Check it out.


Carlsberg Set: Shampoo, Conditioner, and Lotion (single bottles not yet sold separately)

Price: € 64 (US $73) not including shipping

Pros

  • Luxurious design. Each bottle is encased in a stamped and stickered box packaging; can likely be sold separately
  • Attractive & balanced shape; semi-transparent forest green hue
  • Marked with comic commentary (i.e. Shower responsibly)
  • Pleasant “beer” scent is not overwhelming but still detectable

Cons

  • Bottle nozzle is hard to use. Especially for thicker concoctions like the conditioner/ lotion, it can be darn difficult to squeeze it out
  • Agents may irritate eyes. This isn’t surprising given there’s beer in there. (No, I didn’t purposely apply them to my eyes)
  • Shampoo ingredients leave the hair fairly dry. Conditioner application is a must

Purely Observations & Suggestions

  • Affordability v. quantity. Goes without saying that these are fairly high quality products. A 250mL bottle doesn’t seem like much but men also have less hair (on average) to begin with. This will easily last a few months
  • Not best to go camping with this product. I think the beer scent actually attracts insects and mosquitos since I was bitten quite a few times. Hard to prove but sort of makes sense given the potential sugary scent
  • A Grooming Travel Kit would be effective. Or least closed top caps to seal the goods while inside a bag during travel
  • Samples would be helpful for people before they make the commitment

As I ended my interview with Jens, while thanking him profusely for sticking with the consistently horrible overseas phone connection, I asked him what he thought J.C. Jacobsen, the founder of Carlsberg, would think about this venture.

“J.C. has always had a legacy of an industrialist and philanthropist. He looked to give back to society by thinking outside of his professional space and by supporting the arts and science of his day. He was progressive, driven, and entrepreneurial. I hope he can look at our endeavors and say, ‘why the heck did I not think of this?’”

I think JC’s stamp of approval would also be there. This is pretty cool, so why not give it a try? Or you can just buy a 40-pack of lager and soak it all up, though that’s not as highly recommended.


Justin Tung

San Francisco, CA,

Justin Tung is a San Francisco resident, amateur homebrewer, and big beer lover. Often traveling for work grew a natural habit - an obsession - with exploring new regions and beers. The best way to understand a locality? Hang with a local and buy them a beer, hear their stories and the rest is history. This is the golden age of beer revolution and innovation. Fortune rewards the brave.