KIN Apparel

kin apparelKIN Apparel entrepreneur Philomina Kane is a Youtuber with a big following. She does videos about natural hair care for women of color. They feature her using natural products and giving styling tips. This led her to create her business which started as a line of satin lined hooded sweat shirts. She’s since expanded the line to include satin lined bucket hats, beanies, pillowcases and hair care products. Satin retains moisture and it doesn’t create friction on hair the way cotton does.  Friction can cause hair to split, which is a bad thing.

The KIN in KIN Apparel stands for “Keep It Naturally,” which conforms to her natural approach to hair care. After graduating from Princeton in 2017, Philomina worked as a marketing director. She made the jump to being an entrepreneur in 2020 when she founded KIN. She uses social media to market her products, mostly on Facebook and Instagram.

Philomina gave her one month notice for her marketing job on March 1, 2020, right before the global Covid-19 pandemic broke out. She’d been thinking about making satin lined hoodies since 2017 and decided this was the time to start her business. Originally, the hoodies were available as “merch” for her Youtube followers. She decided to “go hard” with KIN that April. She started with 50-100 hoodies and she made videos featuring the product. Then, she posted her videos and had influencers post her videos too. The hoodies caught on with the black community and she had immediate success. KIN Hair Care products are part of her future too. Now, she wants a Shark’s help to grow her business and brand.

My Take on Kin Apparel

As a follicly challenged male, I don’t have a lot of concerns about hair care, so this product isn’t really for me. I do like the feel of satin though, so it’s not like I’d never buy one. The designs are colorful and the hoodies are attractive. Philomina is quite a character too. I listened to a podcast interview with her. She’s smart and and knows a lot about digital marketing. She credits the year 2020 with part of the success of her company. During the pandemic, there was a lot of support for black owned businesses which helped her grow her brand.

This business is more of a branding exercise as satin lined hoodies are available from other companies. What will make her stand out is her personality. In order for her to land a Shark, she’ll need really good sales figures. If she has that, she’s got a chance.

Will The Sharks Like Satin?

The biggest objection will be the non-proprietary aspect of KIN Apparel products. Big sales may overcome that, but it’ll be a tough ride. Mr. Wonderful and Mark are likely not going to bid. Barbara has had success with the Comfy, so she could bid. Lori might too if she feels it would sell on QVC.

The wild card is Emma Grede. She’s the first black woman on the panel and has a fashion background, so Philomina will obviously want to target her. I am sure there will be some discussion about color and business at some point in the discussion. It’s no mistake Grede will be hearing two pitches from fashion companies, both run by people of color. Will that make her want to invest? We shall see.

About Rob Merlino

Entrepreneur, auteur, raconteur. Rob Merlino is a blogger and writer who enjoys the Shark Tank TV show and Hot Dogs. A father of five who freelances in a variety of publications, Rob has a stable of websites including Shark Tank Blog, Hot Dog Stories, Rob Merlino.com and more.

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