the essence of ren

Sitting in the London headquarters of Ren Skincare, one can’t help but notice how the ethos of the brand echos throughout. It’s a huge, clean and light-filled airy space, allowing the whole team to work alongside each other and test-drive ideas in the open. There is a sense of ease in the air, yet one can easily sense the diligence involved with managing a brand that has gone global and is constantly innovating. This is Ren, and this is what Founder Rob Calcraft is all about.

Ren Skincare, London.

Earlier this year, I caught up with Rob in New York City for the screening of the brand’s short film celebrating eleven years in the “industry”, as well as to preview a bevy of new products coming to market this year. We continued the conversation this week in London, where Rob and team Ren are based. Today, Ren is a multi-product global skincare line with cult favorites including its Moroccan Rose Collection which I personally am a fan of. For years now, Ren’s Moroccan Rose Otto Sugar Polish has had a home in my bathroom, along with the Body Oil.

Watch the film, and read on for more on Ren from Founder Rob Calcraft and his brand that now retails in over 40+ countries.

Founder of Ren Skincare, Rob Calcraft.

What prompted you to create a short film for Ren this year?

We wanted to speak with a slightly louder voice and try and show people a little more about REN’s view of the world. It’s also always nice to be doing something new.

Your brand has grown globally and a number of items have grown to “cult” status. What do you think keeps the momentum of the brand going?

If I told you I would have to kill you…not really. I think in our minds we are always trying to make the perfect moisturiser, perfect mask, really the perfect skincare brand. But a bit like trying to write the perfect song, or paint the perfect picture….it never actually happens but the doing of the thing that takes you slightly closer to the ideal is the key. I know, I know, it all sounds a bit Kung Fu Panda but it’s true,honest.

Have you ever thought to create a product for a specific market? For example, would a particular cream be for the Asian or US market only?  If so, why?

Yes we have considered it. Beauty has different faces in different parts of the world, and skin obviously varies too. Taste is also different. For example, Japan loves a good whitening cream, hates strong fragrance and is very fussy about texture. The US might have the same product as Europe but needs selling differently. In Europe it might be ‘Revenescance Active Day Cream’, in the US it would be “Pan-Galactic Skin Perfection In Eternity Serum…Prescription Strength”. So we are slowly coming to terms with all this.

Ren Skincare’s Bio-Retinoid Anti-Ageing Concentrate, new for 2012.

You’re bringing four new items to market this year, including a powerful retinoid serum. What’s next for Ren?

More evolution, constant improvement, that perfect song thing again….and fun along the way. Product wise, we are always checking out the latest in nature-derived techy actives and will be applying this to our Keep Young & Beautiful Cream in 2012, along with our own BB cream. We will also be launching a new cleanser in Fall if all goes to plan. Also, it would be great to get the US to fall in love with real Rose, as they don’t know what they’re missing. We are going to the rose harvest in Morocco in the next week so watch this space.

Ren Skincare, London

In Swedish, Ren means “clean”.


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