Need to spruce up your facial hair and spice up your casserole from the same product line? Say hello to Handsome Devils Co., your one-stop shop for all of your hot sauce and beard oil needs, "curiously crafted by Australian gentlemen". Wondering how someone could come up with a combination like that? It all started with hot sauce.
Working out of a Bondi garage for the last year, this burgeoning Sydney company was initially all about food products when it was founded by Sydney entrepreneur Ryan Brown. "I was eating a lot of hot sauce and […] decided that I could make better products with no preservatives, no added colours or flavours," he says. After sharing his sauces with friends, one suggested that he should sell them and Handsome Devils Co. was born.
The current sauce lineup consists of the smoky chipotle, tangy Verde, spicy Savina and Ryan's favourite of the month: de Arbol. When asked why it's his favorite, his response is simple: "It's just got this all-round awesomeness. I can eat it every single day and never get over it." 'Nuff said. Aside from the chillies, which are imported from Mexico where the climate is more chilli-growing friendly, all the ingredients in the bottles are sourced from local farmers in Port Macquarie.
Of course, once you've mastered one of your favourite products, you'll inevitably look for the next project. Ryan's just happened to be grooming products. Handsome Devils Co.'s grooming range came from the same attitude that Ryan had towards the hot sauce: "I can make that." While this side of the business started as just beard oils, it quickly expanded to include shave oil, aftershave balm, activated charcoal soap and body scrubs. All their grooming products come from the same philosophy: "If you can't put it in your mouth, why would you put it on your skin?"
Every product boasts all-natural ingredients — not that Ryan'd recommend anyone eat them — and Bondi's laidback vibe is present in everything they do. The company is essentially a group of mates doing what they love and trying to embed themselves in the branding (hence the combination of food and grooming).
Sydney's small business scene is pretty cutthroat, with statistics saying that most fail within their first two years. But Handsome Devils Co. has triumphantly survived — albeit with seriously hard work. "It's been a lot of trial and error," says Ryan. They must be trialling something right — their nationwide list of stockists is testament to that.
So what's next for Handsome Devils Co.? This young Sydney company has some pretty awesome things ahead. They're supplying hot sauce for Sydney rock band You Am I's latest album, Porridge and Hotsauce, and will be collaborating with everyone's favourite brewers, Young Henrys, for some events in December. Ryan is also working on a list of products (not necessarily hot sauces) to produce but he's trying to keep it hush hush. Despite not having a storefront, you can catch the guys at the Brewery Yard Markets and every three or four weeks at the Bondi Farmers Market.
Check out Handsome Devils Co.'s website — they might just have the Christmas present you're looking for.