Ethical beauty brand Object invites consumers to “object to the status quo” of the beauty industry
Sick of the amount of plastic accumulating in their bathroom, co-founders of a new ethical beauty bar created their own distinctive alternative.
- Lucy Bourton
- 30 September 2021
- Reading Time
- 3 minute read
The idea behind Object, a new natural beauty essentials company, began simply with its founders becoming “sick of all the plastic waste filling our bathroom,” co-founder, Jack Wolton, tells It’s Nice That. Kickstarted by Jack and his boyfriend Hugo, creating their very own product wasn’t the pair’s initial idea, but after trying tonnes of ethically-focussed products “we couldn’t find any that we loved,” adds Jack. “Either they looked cheap and didn’t appeal to our design aesthetic or they didn’t work well – we weren’t willing to compromise on either of these points.” And so, Object “an ethical, design-led brand” was born.
Despite more ethically-focussed alternatives appearing on the market, and beauty brands often marketing “natural” ingredients and resources as part of a product’s offering, “the beauty industry creates 120 million tonnes of plastic every year,” Jack explains, “and just nine per cent of plastic waste is effectively recycled, which means that most of it ends up in the ocean or landfill.” Not only that, but the actual product inside plastic packaging furthers this problem: “There’s a global water shortage but normal shampoo, conditioner and body washes are made up from 80 per cent water which seems crazy.”
Object tackles these issues first in its product, offering alternatives for shampoo, conditioner and body washes via its compressed bars made from just 0.5 per cent water. But while the brand began wanting to create a solution to plastic waste, Jack and Hugo quickly realised Object could grow to encapsulate further social and environmental issues. “As a gay couple, we also care a lot about inclusivity so we try to promote acceptance and diversity, and celebrate being ‘different’ in everything we do,” continues Jack. Even though it has just recently launched, the brand’s product marketing showcases this, working with gay and non-binary models across its advertising. As it grows, Jack notes that “hiring a diverse group of employees will also be a key priority,” and the introduction of a monthly magazine discussing “social and environmental issues that mean a lot to us, everything from global warming to trans rights to BLM,” will further these conversations.
Therefore the brand’s name isn’t just a description of its product, but really a call to action encouraging its audience to “Object to the status quo”. This message is hinted at in Jack and Hugo’s art direction of the product, first through its visual identity which prioritises bright, bold packaging to challenge “consumers’ preconceptions about what a natural, plastic-free brand should look like,” explains Jack. The material used then elevates this premium feel Jack and Hugo were keen to create, with each product wrapped in textured material and communicated through stylised product shots. In terms of its logo, Object has two, the first spelling its name in a sans-serif boldly and a further “waterfall logo” which repeats the wordmark to represent “movement and mobilisation to fight for what you believe in,” says the co-founder. Finally, this is paired with a more traditional and classic serif font to be used alongside to “counterbalance and complement our bold logo, whilst adding personality and a more premium look and feel.”
From an idea sparked while Hugo and Jack were at home in their bathroom to a product you can now buy, Object is a true example of spotting a gap in the market and filling it creatively. Most of all however its co-founders hope to appeal to individuals “who aren’t attracted by traditional natural, plastic-free brands, but who love our aesthetic and that it encourages them to take the plunge and get rid of the plastic from their bathrooms!”
GalleryObject Beauty (Copyright © Object Beauty 2021)
Object Beauty (Copyright © Object Beauty 2021)
About the Author
Lucy joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in July 2016 after graduating from Chelsea College of Art. In October 2016 she became a staff writer on the editorial team and in January 2019 was made It’s Nice That’s deputy editor. Feel free to get in contact with Lucy about new and upcoming creative projects or editorial ideas for the site.