All black everything. Core gear. No logos. No team. Just what you need at a lower price. And what their stuff may be lacking in logos, neon and marketing, they make up for in water time. needessentials is a brand of wetsuits, outerwear and trunks that simply think frills are for those on the beach. They have a simple website full of essential gear, all in black, with no branding at an affordable price. Sounds kinda refreshing to us. Maybe not for everything, but a great resource when you need to update your wettie or surf gear in a pinch. We called brand representative JP Collett to hear a bit more, because this is a new philosophy in surf.
WHAT YOUTH: How is needessentials ethos different from other brands who’ve made wetsuits and gear in the past?
JP COLLETT: We’re a non-brand directed to everyday surfers who know what they want and need. Great product at a good price. We believe big marketing campaigns, logos and wide product assortments and retail merchandising are not needed. Our customers know what they want and need by now. We deliver value to them by stripping away everything that doesn’t contribute to a product performing well.
Our focus is creating a limited range of premium, performance wetsuits and boardshorts at a great price: all black, minimal packaging, no branding, no fancy names for any so-called “tech.” Well built and not over-cooked — and at a fraction of the price.
Where did the desire to create such a brand come from?
From being life-long surfers who grew up in the surf industry and wanted to get back to the basics: Make great product for surfers. And to simplify our lives and build something that would enable us to live the way we wanted to live and just do biz through our website, allowing us to talk directly to customers. We can ship anywhere, and we can do it from a moving car, from home or from a boat (with wifi!).
In your opinion, what elements have made the creation of the brand so necessary?
I don’t think its “necessary,” but I think it’s timely. We have little companies all over the place specializing in premium products and going direct — Lull Mattress, Dollar Shave Club, Canyon Bikes. Pricing transparency has become super important to the millennials and now their parents. The customer is often paying for quite few things that they don’t necessarily want and definitely don’t need. More and more, today’s consumers just want good solid product and aspire to be smart with their purchases. We want to meet that need. Become our own online retail store as well as the creator of the product.
Who is a needessentials customer?
Amazing surfers around the world. Local kids who don’t want to be billboards. People who like the simple approach or like the fact that we’re small and independent. Fundamentally, we attract the cost-conscious people who just want to pay a fair price for real quality.
Where do we get it?
Exclusively at www.needessentials.com.
Do you have a team?
We don’t have a team in the traditional sense. We have a group of friends who we are lucky to use in some of the stuff we make: Guys like Torren Martyn and Drew McPherson from Oz. Our branding and marketing is fundamentally word of mouth. Surfer to surfer. Back to basics. We don’t pay anyone…including ourselves at this point.