Flares: Childfree Communities, Status Candles, and Menicures

Aja Frost @ajavuu

Childfree Communities Are on the Rise

Remaining childless by choice, AKA childfree, is still considered an outlying path. Yet millions of people are choosing to do so, and millions more will follow. The r/Childfree Subreddit alone has 1.3m+ members.

There are a growing number of social platforms for new parents to connect; why not for the childfree? The need here is decidedly pertinent -- research shows that childfree women in particular are at significant risk of social isolation. You could create platforms for:

  • Social connection
  • Dating
  • Connection for the voluntary childless over holiday periods 

A subreddit dedicated to finding ‘chosen family’ (people considered family who are not biologically or legally related) online has 18k+ subscribers (and sweet posts like this one). 

Your platform could bring together groups of like-minded adults for Childfree Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. This niche could also serve the growing number of digital nomads (~4.8m, with ~17m more aspiring nomads) who may be apart from their families over the holidays.

The Status Candle Market is Heating Up

Source: JungleScout

DTC startups are coming for the luxury “status candle” market, epitomized by the likes of Diptyque (at $65 for a 6.5-ounce candle). 

This time last year, luxury DTC candle brand Otherland raised $2.7m in seed funding. 

Since then, web traffic for a number of other niche candle brands has peaked with some impressive numbers, according to SimilarWeb, including:

  • Homesick Candles (candles designed to smell like specific cities, states, and countries) → 85k visits in September
  • Boy Smells Candles (a social media-famous brand known for its non-traditional scents and pink packaging) → 55k visits in July

Simple products with clever marketing strategies are also a potential play. Earlier this year, Boy Smells collaborated with singer Kacey Musgraves on a candle that sold out in less than 24 hours and has a waitlist of 15k+ people. 

There is still appetite in the market for niche, luxury candles. This list of creative candle designs might provide some inspiration. Think masculine candle scents, food and craft beer-scented candles, and customizable candle subscriptions.

S/O to Trendster Amanda Mae Meyncke for putting this trend on our radar and reminding us of this timeless tweet. 

Menicures: The Next Breakout Star of Male Grooming

S ource: Subreddit Stats

Earlier this year, Elle, Esquire, and GQ all reported on the growing popularity of “Menicures”: manicures for men. Months later, the trend has exploded on Reddit. 

The R/MalePolish subreddit increased by ~190% from ~12k subscribers at the beginning of August to ~35k subscribers only 3 months later at the end of October.

Products that help men grow a perfectly trimmed and oiled beard have moved swiftly into the mainstream along with male skincare products. The global male grooming products market, estimated to be worth ~$58B in 2019, is expected to balloon to over $78B by 2023.

Now, social media stars and celebrities alike are playing their part in normalizing male nail polish, and in particular nail art. 

Entrepreneurs can capitalize by adding nail bars to the list of male-focused grooming establishments which already includes hair salons and spas

They can also experiment with nail products marketed specifically at a male audience. Mobile nail salons, which are already gaining popularity for their convenience factor, may be a perfect fit for the male market.

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