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.
This time around we sat down with the founder of SmileTime™ to discover how her own smile enabled her to make a difference. She embarked upon a journey to ensure that feeling confident about one's smile is a gateway to feeling confident in other areas of one's life.
(For our Groom & A Podcast Episode with Natalie, Listen Here.)
Tell us a bit about yourself and your involvement with SmileTime. Where do you originally come from, and what's your favourite TV show?
I’m Natalie Quail, CEO & Founder of SmileTime. I grew up in the North London suburbs however, my parents are from Guyana, South America – so I definitely have an international flair! Favourite TV show…a difficult one – Stranger Things is up there.
When did you start SmileTime?
I launched SmileTime in 2019 with a close-knit team with over 30 years of experience in the UK dental industry.
How did SmileTime come about? What inspired you to launch this brand?
I experienced the pain point of lacking some convenient and pain-free teeth whitening solutions, that fit into my busy lifestyle when I worked as an international tax lawyer in my 20s (and where my smile was key to making an important first impression in client meetings).
However, SmileTime’s origin story really began 15 years ago. Dentistry is very much in my DNA – since I spent summers working in my parents' dental practices, and become a consumer of dental teeth whitening at age 16.
I found that feeling confident about my smile was a gateway to feeling confident in other areas of my life.
When I experienced first-hand the lack of affordable yet premium at-home teeth whitening options, I wanted to create a product range that could fit as easily into my self-care or my partner’s grooming regime as other products fit into our skincare routines. All the at-home products in the market at the time felt cheap, lacking customer service alongside questionable safety standards.
That’s the real mission of SmileTime – inspiring smile confidence, by creating affordable yet premium smile care products to complete your self-care routine. We’re backed by a nationwide dental chain and have dental expertise on our board to ensure our product development is to the safest standards for our customers.
What is unique about your products?
Our product range is peroxide-free – that means no nasty bleach to burn your gums!
All our products are designed to be really easy to use at home or on the go creating a hassle-free and pain-free experience.
For me, dental teeth whitening and oral care products often seemed complicated (even though I grew up around dentists!) and there were a lot of chemicals that though effective at whitening, caused pain and sensitivity to patients which made the experience unpleasant.
I aimed to create a smile care product range that was easy & enjoyable enough to slot into a regular self-care routine, backed by exceptional customer service that gave our customers the feeling of support they might get at their dentist.
Describe in only 3 words what your brand means to customers.
Supportive smile care.
Do you have any upcoming product launches? If so, can you tell us more about them?
Currently top-secret! Though lip-care could be coming on the scene soon!
What is your favourite product from another brand that is not currently available in your product portfolio?
Aesop body balm.
Which celebrity’s involvement in the cosmetics industry do you think is making a big difference?
Rihanna’s brand Fenty Beauty does a great job of making colour cosmetics feel inclusive – with a range of products for different skin tones.
What’s one career you wish you could have?
5 years from now, if money were no object, where would you like to see your brand and what would it represent?
In 5 years the aim would be omnichannel with a strong presence online in the DTC space both in the UK and internationally, in addition to an international storewide presence in leading beauty hub retail.
SmileTime would represent the starting point to feeling confident throughout your life as a trusted adviser in holistic self-care. Your smile is just the beginning.
Finally, what is an easy life hack that you think will instil confidence and boost self-esteem in men?
Our SmileTime Charcoal Teeth Whitening Powder. Brush for 2 minutes. Rinse the black powder from your teeth (don’t worry – it rinses easily!). It feels like you’ve had a mini mouth detox – minty fresh & shiny pearly whites ready for the day.