This Company Wants to Protect Your Garments While Reducing Global Harm

Published on April 4, 2019

Did you know that most of the existing laundry product formulations we use contain overly-harsh chemicals such as OBAs, FBAs, damaging surfactants, and even phosphates?

These chemicals give off the initial appearance of a decent clean, but over time, inevitably damage the natural colors and fabrics of the garment, as well as adding to the global harm of our environment.

Why the FREY Brothers Care About Your Garments

Featured on nationally broadcasted shows like Ellen and Good Morning America along with publications like ELLE, Cosmopolitan, Men’s Health, Forbes, and The Wall Street Journal, the FREY Brothers have discovered the industry solution—to stop misleading customers as to the very nature of the products they use on their most precious garments and, really, all of them since most touch the skin.

From Their Basement to Your Home

 Erin and Leif Frey are two brothers who set out to make the world a better place for you and your garments.

In the basement of their Maryland home, they discovered that the entire industry as we knew it was built on mistrust:

  • Bottles and caps were created to encourage over usage and filling;
  • Formulas incorporated fillers (e.g. plain water) to give the appearance of a larger volume of product; and
  • Harsh chemicals are used to give the initial appearance of a good clean, but in reality, damage fabrics over time and can’t be good for the skin

But, after months of research, they began a Kickstarter campaign from their basement filling their bottles by hand which led to the creation of FREY, a company whose products are produced with the highest-quality ingredients by some of the leading manufacturers and one of the top fragrance houses in the United States.

We are in this modern era of the conscious consumer—everyone is paying attention to their clothing, fragrance, grooming products, and what they are putting in their hair and on their skin. For almost 99% of an individual’s life, they are exposed to the harsh chemicals engrained in laundry detergent—wearing clothes, sleeping on sheets, using towels—all of which goes through the cleaning process. Yet, the entire industry is filled with toxic products.”

The brothers told us they entered into the market for three reasons:

#1—Adapting to the Digital Age

Most products you can buy online today. This space, in particular, is over-saturated, yet, people are still going to chain stores to buy monopolized brands. Specifically, many of these products are designed for overuse, making it look like customers are getting a better deal for their money.

“What many people don’t realize is that the TIDE caps, are designed for over-use. We have one in our apartment—and on the cap, it says 60 loads if you fill to Line 1 on the cap, but recommended use is to fill to Line 5, for large loads. But for line 5, that’s 15 loads per bottle. So, all of a sudden you realize where TIDE seems reasonably priced, becomes absurdly expensive.”

By using a smaller, concentrated bottle, which is easier to use, accompanied with a pump, the user is able to use just enough detergent.  This saves on cost in general, the lifetime of the washable items and the environment.

GritDaily: What’s been the most exciting part for you?

FREY: We love working with each other. Remember, we started this from our college basement not knowing it would become a hugely popular brand. The number of bottles we are shipping now is mind boggling, keeping in mind that our first bottles were hand-filled a dozen at a time.

GD: What’s the biggest challenge with you working so closely together? Do you want to kill each other?

FREY: The reason why it works so well is because we’ve been close our entire lives. During the few times we disagree, it makes it significantly easier to address, because it’s something we’ve done over the span of our entire lives.  There’s something about having a brother or family member, where, no matter what, you know they will be in your life so it’s really about coming up with a solution where both parties are as happy as possible.

From inception, FREY has ingrained social responsibility into the fabric of their brand, literally. Ten percent of all FREY’s profits are donated to organizations that help to either plant trees in deforested areas, or their heart-warming Wash for Wash program. This organization works with local groups to create a system that assists the homeless community in showering and providing them with both new and washed clothing, as well as providing food to those in low-income communities.

#2—The Market is Old and Impersonal

The initial product started because we were tired of the monopoly of products on the laundry detergent aisle, where everything looks similar and is primarily geared towards women. Our initial product was detergent with a scent inspired by premium fragrances that, as we have mentioned, was launched out of our basement.”

GD: What do you think of the current market as it is today?

FREY: The challenge of today’s market is the idea of finding ever-emerging ways to connect with your customers and do so authentically. Facebook does well for us for bringing on new customers. It’s a constantly emerging space where people are becoming more desensitized to conversations, making most conversations seem inauthentic.

So, it’s about finding the next step to reconnecting and engaging with customers. We have people on our team who spend their entire day reaching out to our current customers to learn from them, engage with them, and make them feel heard and truly taken care of. This builds a life-time value and we are constantly learning from our customers what we are doing right and what needs improvement.

Few brands are willing to put in the work to individually reach out to their customer base. We do the work to make sure this happens and that the results are documented and changes or improvements made where necessary.

#3—Maintain Your Health While Wearing Chemicals

In addition to wearing the fragrance all day long, you’re also wearing the chemicals all day long—and to the Frey brothers, health is extremely important.

Mother Nature is our biggest friend, and we are slowly killing her each and every day. Why is this when modern technology presents us with opportunities to not only stop the damage but repair it as well?

 FREY’s formulations remove damaging chemicals, while maintaining an exceptional clean, through a specialized blend of enzymes and environmentally friendly surfactants. 

Blended with over a dozen essential oils and natural fragrances, FREY prides itself with its “Oak” fragrance, symbolizing strength and endurance, both of which are embodied by its austere scent of wood and wild forest, combined with crisp, natural freshness of cedarwood and the warm rich tones of amber to form the strong base layer.

From there, it is layered with the notes of soft leather, accompanied by hints of citrusy bergamot, a touch of geranium, and the fresh, minty-ness of eucalyptus to form a well-balanced scent that leaves clothing clean with a subtle distinct and pleasing aroma.

Andrew "Drew" Rossow is a former contract editor at Grit Daily.

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