A few years ago, when Glen Ellyn resident Ryan Schiff was shopping for shampoo for his boys, who at the time were in sports and going off to camp, he was surprised at the lack of products for kids who were no longer babies and who weren’t adults either.
Along with the lack of choices, many of the products had ingredients that concerned Schiff.
“My oldest was going to camp and we were arguing over shampoo," he said. "There was nothing between Johnson’s Baby Shampoo and things with dinosaurs and Axe. One thing led to another and I had this idea kicking around in my head.”
The idea was for Postgame, a company, which offers shampoo, body wash and a three-in-one shampoo, conditioner and body wash. He talked with his children and their friends and had an idea for a logo. Schiff launched the company in 2009.
As Schiff began searching for a company to make the product [he chose a company based in Bellwood], he realized what he didn’t want the product to include: parabens, phalates or sulfates.
“I wanted it to be something my family and kids would use, with no chemicals,” he said. “The filler tried to persuade me not to do it [because it’s more expensive to make]. I thought, I don’t really need the money, so I’m going to go forward with it and see what happens and if it doesn’t take off, fine.”
The reason to leave out the items commonly found in shampoos was that ingredients such as sulfates have been known to cause skin irritations and skin conditions, such as eczema, Schiff said. With the amount of showering and bathing sports players can take a day, he wanted to err on the side of caution, he said.
“It’s geared toward people who shower more frequently than others, elite athletes are going to shower more times a day,” he said. “The combination of chemicals and hot water, Postgame doesn’t have the sulfates and doesn’t dry the scalp out. It is good against any kind of repeated use.”
What started out as a product his boys and their friends might use, has turned into a product that colleges, universities and professional sports teams keep in their locker rooms.
Postgame can be found in between 30 and 40 college and pro teams locker rooms. Customers include the Denver Broncos, NY Mets, Chicago White Sox and the University of Illinois.
In addition, Schiff said the company recently picked up by Dunham’s Sports, one of the larger sports retailers in the Midwest. He is in talks with other large retailers, such as Kmart, and hoping to get into Walmart stores.
From a business perspective, Schiff said he is disappointed that some larger hair salon chains haven’t been interested in selling Postgame, but even so, he is pleased with the teams that are using it and the exposure the company is getting.
The product can be found online as well as in retail locations.
Schiff also believes in giving back and has worked with local teams to do fundraisers, with teams receiving a portion of the sales. He also donates to the Ronald McDonald House Charities. (See coupon attached.)
A lot of the businesses growth has been through word of mouth, he said.
“It’s growing organically and slowly,” Schiff said. “That is fine with me.”