Martial Arts Fighter Brings Men's Skin Care Line to the Village

By Andrea Swalec on August 22, 2011 6:23am 

Longtime martial arts student and Upper East Side resident, Dan Ostrower, 35, launched Manumission Skin Care when he identified a gap in the market.
Longtime martial arts student and Upper East Side resident, Dan Ostrower, 35, launched Manumission Skin Care when he identified a gap in the market.
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DNAinfo/Andrea Swalec

GREENWICH VILLAGE — Dan Ostrower, the founder of Manumission Skin Care, said some of the toughest men he knows like women's beauty products because they give their beat-up skin the care it needs. 

"Guys who do Brazilian jujitsu and could rip your arm off and beat you with it like bubble bath and girly products because they have enough moisturizers," Ostrower said. 

To give Ultimate Fighters, soldiers and men on the trading floor the skin care they want without the fruity scents, Ostrower launched Manumission, he said in an interview Thursday. 

The products will be sold in several men's clothing shops, barber shops and gyms in the Village within the next month, Ostrower said about deals he is wrapping up now.

The longtime martial arts student and Upper East Side resident, 35, realized in 2005 that he had a problem to solve.

"I was doing a lot of mixed martial arts, outdoor commercial fishing and car racing, and my skin was taking a beating," he said. 

Ostrower bought dozens of products to try to calm his irritated skin, but everything he found was drying or had heavy fragrances. 

He took knowledge from three generations of family work in the cosmetics industry and worked with chemists to create Manumission, whose tagline is "Skin care for men who get it done."

Ostrower tested the products by sending them to Ultimate Fighters, wrestlers, commercial fishers and military members in Afghanistan and Iraq. 

"I was looking for hardcore guys who were in extreme environments and whose skin gets beat up," he said. 

He launched Manumission, whose name refers to freeing oneself, at Ultimate Fighting Championship expos in July 2009. 

Ultimate Fighter Anthony “The Assassin” Njokuani endorsed the line on its website. 

"We all know I need to look sharp in and out of the cage, and I use the Manumission products daily," he said. 

Ostrower said the men his line targets don't want false promises. 

"These men don't want to hear 'Use this product and models will fall into your bed,'" he said. "They already have the beautiful women. These guys are like, 'Put up or shut up.'"

Manumission Skin Care was created to give Ultimate Fighters, soldiers and men on the trading floor the skin care they want without the fruity scents, its founder said.
Manumission Skin Care was created to give Ultimate Fighters, soldiers and men on the trading floor the skin care they want without the fruity scents, its founder said.
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Flickr/fchmksfkcb

The products contain natural ingredients like tea tree oil and eucalyptus, have a mild citrus scent and are available online. A 5-ounce body bar costs $8 and a 5-ounce tube of shaving gel costs $14. 

Ostrower said he think the line is a good fit for the Village.

"The men in the Village are very active, busy and spend time outdoors. Walk past any health club in the neighborhood at any hour of the day and they're there taking care of themselves," he said.

If guys don't want to take care of their skin for their own sake, do it for the ladies, Ostrower said. 

"Women are demanding that men dress better, smell better, look better and take better care of their skin," he said. 

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