Cousins Brandon Karam and Jessica Karam Oley, creators of Pristine Cleansing Sprays, had something in common before going into business together. Besides being related, they're both attorneys and they both used a lot of wipes. Jessica used them on her kids and Brandon used them on himself.
The problem with regular wipes is twofold: they contain a lot of harsh chemicals and they don't decompose well. For a lot of people, putting a lot of chemicals on the bum is unpleasant at best. In Jessica's case, one of her kids developed rashes due to the chemicals. Wipes that don't decompose (virtually all of the wipes on the market) clog up sewer lines and caused back-ups, even breaks in the system. It happened to Jessica at her home.
The cousins were comparing wipe horror stories (wasn't THAT an interesting conversation) and they realized they needed a solution. Jessica's pediatrician told her to just use toilet paper with a little witch hazel. That's where they got the idea for Pristine Cleansing Sprays. The idea is to keep a bottle in the bathroom and moisten some toilet paper with a spritz or two instead of using wipes.
In addition to witch hazel, Pristine Cleansing Sprays contain essential oils and aloe, among other things. The ingredients are all natural – no chemicals. They've been in business for about four years and sell their products on Amazon. They likely want a Shark's help getting awareness out there and with distribution in retail stores.
My Take on Pristine Cleansing Sprays
I know about the havoc traditional wipes wreak on sewer systems. Last week, a clump of wipes caused a sewer main to burst in a community near me. It caused an 80,000 gallon spill which ended up right in the Gulf of Mexico! I was surprised to learn cities are starting to sue diaper wipe manufacturers over these kinds of incidents. Cities want wipes to be biodegradable so expensive, environmentally harmful sewage breaks don't occur. Last May, Target settled a lawsuit about this issue.
As for the functionality of Pristine Cleansing Sprays, I get the idea. I do the same thing with toilet paper and some witch hazel from time to time. It works great. The problem I have with this product is the price. A four ounce bottle costs $13.49. A 12 ounce bottle of witch hazel is less than a buck I totally get what they are doing with their product, but I already have a more affordable solution that works for me. I'm out.
Will Sharks Wipe Out a Deal?
Back in season 7, Mark invested in Dude Wipes, so he understands the need for wipes. I wonder if Mark considered the environmental impact of those products? I don't think Mark invests because it competes with Dude Wipes, but it may make him think about developing a biodegradable option.
The problem Pristine Cleansing Sprays has is they need to re-educate consumers and change behavior. People use wipes for their convenience. Asking folks to carry a bottle of spray around instead seems like a relatively tall order. The Sharks generally don't like products like that. The other thing is it's not a proprietary product. There are at least a half dozen other similar sprays on the market; Pristine just happens to be the leader in the space – at least for now. All these things make me think they leave without a deal.