Groom & A is our latest interview series with some of the key brains and people behind the brands you see on Humanery. The products that feature on our platform share our ethos of encouraging men to activate healthy self-care routines, and to integrate personal grooming into their lives.
We sat down with the founder of TenT Nutrition to find out more about the brand which takes inspiration from the notion that to look good and feel good, one must also create a balance within their internal being.
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you’re involved with TenT Nutrition. Where do you originally come from and what’s your favourite TV show?
My name is Andrew Withycombe, Founder/CEO of TenT Nutrition. I am originally from Epsom, just outside London. My favourite TV show is Californication.
When did you start TenT Nutrition?
I started TenT in 2019.
How did TenT Nutrition come about? What inspired you to launch this brand?
I have always been obsessed with grooming and nutrition, but looking back, the inspiration for TenT only came about after a specific incident.
I was not long out of a nearly 10-year relationship (I had been dumped) while I was in my mid 30's and my confidence was unsurprisingly low. In an attempt to cheer-up, I went on a holiday with a friend to Punta del Este in Uruguay. While sitting in a bar with a light hanging over my head, my friend very unceremoniously announced to me, 'F**k me you're going bald!'. Needless to say, that ruined my night and whilst probably not the coolest thing to do, I sat up all night looking into how I could stop my hair loss, pledging to do whatever I could.
Over the following years, I tried everything, learning a huge amount about hair, how it works, what makes it fall out and the nutritional elements that keep it from falling out. At the time I worked for a reasonably large men’s UK grooming company and was able to see first-hand the effect that poor hair and skin could have on a man’s confidence.
After a few years of research and working with a nutritionist friend alongside a dermatologist, I settled to follow a routine of what to take to help improve my hair. This routine, in turn, happened to be helping my skin also (great plus point about nutrition, often more than one benefit!).
The lightbulb moment for TenT was when I realised, I was telling all my male friends to go and buy XYZ products, however, there was no brand out there offering this under one banner as a well-made, well-designed product, that men (and women) could feel proud to have on their shelves.
This then led me to start focusing on skin and sleep, the other core attributes to looking good and feeling great, hence TenT was born.
What is unique about your products?
At TenT, our ethos is simple; we wanted to create a range of health and grooming products that allow our customers to not only see the benefits but feel them too. A complete holistic approach from the inside out.
We look to pinpoint specific issues that can be improved with nutrition. Helping educate men about the advantages of nootropic and nutricosmetics and how supplements can be more than just protein powder. We want to shape the narrative that it is not anti-masculine or unmanly to use supplements. Quite the opposite - we believe that looking after yourself holistically is a sign of strength and character.
Describe in only 3 words what your brand means to customers?
Essential, Quality, Healthy.
Do you have any upcoming product launches? If so, can you tell us more about them?
We have just launched our Collagen Powder, which is getting excellent reviews.
Looking forward, we have a new charity bracelet coming up (we've done this a few times with local artists to raise money for different charities). However, the main products we are currently working on are a thickening shampoo and conditioner. We are extremely excited about this and are working with a fantastic manufacturer here in the UK hoping to launch it in late spring 2022.
What is your favourite product from another brand that is not currently available in your product portfolio?
I would love to do our own scent, I am not sure at the moment how it sits in the collection, but I think it would be an amazing addition. I already know what the scent will be. One scent that I love (even though it’s a bit mainstream but still) is Le Labo Santal 33.
Which celebrity do you think is most well-groomed and personifies stylishness?
There are some obvious candidates here, Beckham of course does all grooming well, but I am going with someone who is not exactly famous, but he is an older male model.
His name is Bernard Fouquet, he has been able to embrace getting older in a very stylish manner and I love his laissez-faire attitude. It’s his silver hair that impresses me. Men fear going grey, but they shouldn't, it's just a new colour to work with. I recommend looking at this man and how he makes it work for himself.
What’s one career you wish you could have?
Movie star - it just seems like it would be really fun. Perhaps a bit more realistic, something creative, such as a photographer (wildlife or perhaps sports) or making something by hand like jewellery or hats.
5 years from now, if money were no object, where would you like to see your brand and what would it represent?
I would love to see the brand expand into having its own standalone stores. Ideally in locations such as Lexington St in London or Abbott Kinney in Venice Beach, dotted across the globe. Coming from a retail background I believe strongly that the best way to give your brand life is in your own space. The idea behind this brand is for it to become your go-to brand for nutrition and grooming purposes. I feel opening stores would allow us to tell that narrative and build a community.
Finally, what is an easy life hack that you think men with concerns about their skin and hair should use to look and feel better?
Sounds simple and obvious but, drink loads of water. Water is great for everything skin related but it is also great for your hair. Oh, and also don't cover yourself entirely in your favourite scent, just spray it on your body's hot spots. One spray on the inside of each wrist and one to the back of the neck should give the scent that snail trail effect as you walk past people.