DUBAI: “Self-care products are not gender-specific,” said Waseem Sendi, founder of Diggn’It — a beard care brand hailing from Saudi Arabia.
Sendi addressed the importance of self-care for men, which goes far beyond looking good, he said.
“Men have been told their whole lives to ‘man up,’ which means no crying, no emotion, no growth, no softness,” Sendi said. “The problem that creates is that those natural emotions have nowhere to go, and it leads to explosions and does a disservice to our entire community.”
Sendi’s brand, that was born out of a small kitchen in his home in Saudi Arabia, was co-founded by his wife Samya Fetyani and their business partner Layal Ismail.
It is inspired by generations of Arab tradition using natural oils — like castor, cactus and sweet almond — to care for the hair.
“When we were formulating the products we spoke to our grandmothers on what they said was ‘known’ for excellent care for your hair. That was our starting point and it was important for our products to reflect the centuries of knowledge and tradition that wasn’t as known to our generation,” Sendi explained.
The products, that vary from beard oils to balms, softeners and wax, are also available in Arabian scents like musk, oud, rose and amber.
Sendi went on to explain why having a beard is such an important statement to him, saying he encountered a plethora of racist and stereotyped comments growing up between the Middle East and in North America. “The most common ‘joke’ was to shave before I travelled. That was just a common stereotype,” he said.
But as the years have gone on, and beards and grooming has become more accepted, the businessman got a lot more positive comments.
“Arab men with beards have spent the Age of Terror extremely conscious of their beard styles and what it looks like worldwide. We did not want to be mistaken with terrorist groups, but we still wanted to have freedom in the expressions of ourselves through our beards,” he said.
“We don’t have to all be the same, we are not all the same, but we can definitely live our vibe,” Sendi added.
Their products, which are available online at www.diggnit.com, and retailers such as Amazon, are designed in Saudi Arabia and made in the UAE.