It's been 10 years since Oribe Canales took his 30-year career in hairdressing and transformed it into a product range that fused old-world hairstyling with new-world technology, formally known as Oribe Hair Care. Over the past decade, the brand's founding trio—Canales, Daniel Kaner and Tevya Finger—has reimagined haircare with a long list of innovative products that have turned into cult favorites for stylists everywhere.
Kaner, president and co-founder of Oribe, says the past 10 years have gone by in the blink of an eye, but he couldn't be happier with the way things have unfolded. American Salon sat down with Kaner to talk about the brand's original vision, how they're staying relevant in an ultra-competitive industry and the year-long anniversary celebration that's only just begun.
AS: What has been the most monumental moment in the past 10 years?
DK: There have been so many. But, what is most monumental is that the co-founders and I had an idea about a brand, and we were clear in what it stood for, what we wanted it to look like, how we wanted it to perform and how salons would react to it from the beginning. Ten years later, it’s like we unfolded the dream. The journey has been very much how we saw it from the start.
AS: What do the next 10 years look like for Oribe? What do you hope to achieve?
DK: It’s almost like we're starting over again. We have to continually reinvent ourselves and our processes in order to grow and develop as an organization. Currently, we are reflecting on how we do things and how we can be more supportive to our salon owners, as well as how we can continue to develop products that excite and live up to our expectations. We will continue to evolve our brand with unique product offerings, while also focusing on education that is not only inspirational but can be used every day in the salon. We certainly don’t want to change just for the purpose of changing.
AS: What has changed the most since the brand launched in 2008?
DK: We are more confident as a brand now. Like all of us, when we start our careers, we’re not as sure of ourselves. In the past decade, the environment and the consumer marketplace has definitely changed, but Oribe’s quality, consistency, honor, relationships and all those key principles that characterize the Oribe brand have stayed the same. That’s the credo we follow. We are also listening a lot more and becoming more flexible—the market has taught us to listen more than we did in our youth.
AS: Has anything changed in the packaging in the last 10 years?
DK: There haven’t been any drastic changes, which is so unusual. The genius was in the design team capturing something timeless. It’s a nod to history and beauty, as well as functionality, which is quite a distinction. It’s rare to design something that floats through time.
AS: Is there one thing you wish you’d known when the brand started that you know now?
DK: I wouldn’t have changed a thing. There are curveballs and challenges in all of our journeys, but we have been very fortunate. The original designers of the brand had tremendous foresight in the key principles—we picked exceptional team members and chose top salon partners to work with. We honored the process, and nothing short of amazing has happened.
AS: How does Oribe stay relevant as more and more competitive brands enter the beauty industry?
DK: We have to stay modern while maintaining our original principles, which are, in no specific order: understanding customers values and needs, making sure we have a team that is continuing to grow and respecting the brand itself and elevating with technology and quality to stay true to the original thesis of creating something special.
I’ve always admired the indie sensibility. The great brands that I grew up with were founder-driven and maintained a perspective. Our hallmark of success is to make sure we always feel youthful like an indie brand and to bring a unique perspective to our marketplace every day.
AS: Is the brand doing anything monumental to celebrate the milestone?
DK: We decided to do a year’s worth of activities because we couldn’t settle on just one thing. We’ve named it “The Year of Dry” after our legendary Dry Texturizing Spray. The first thing we did to celebrate was to create a limited-edition sequin-wrapped bottle. You can take the anniversary wrapping off to unveil the iconic Dry bottle underneath.
As a mark of celebration, we also created a once-in-a-lifetime contest where the winner travels to an exotic resort—Amangiri in Canyon Point, UT—and it's open to everyone, from consumers to stylists. Visit oribe.com/anniversary/ to learn more and enter.
This year, we’re also celebrating with two of the largest Oribe Atelier education events we’ve ever had. The first Atelier was in Brooklyn in May and the final event, or party, of 2018 will be held in December in Los Angeles. You can find out more about this event at oribe.com/ateliers. This is our year to honor and celebrate.