Meet Nick Karnaze, founder of Stubble & ‘Stache, an award-winning beard and skin care line for men based just outside of Washington, DC. Nick built Stubble & ‘Stache in part to make having a beard a little easier and in part to support his fellow veterans returning from the battlefield.
Founder of Stubble & ‘Stache
Changing things for the better.
Dog or Cat:
Dog for sure. The bigger the better.
Briefly, what is your story?
Tragedy started my journey here. I had the idea for Stubble & ‘Stache following the combat death of Sgt Justin Hansen, USMC on July 24th, 2012. Justin and I served in the same Marine Special Operations Company. During deployment, we normally grow beards. I knew Justin had a solid beard when he went down. At that point, I was already out of the Marine Corps and for whatever reason (call it a coping mechanism) I decided to grow my beard out for his funeral. In doing so, I was reminded of how itchy growing a beard can be. I looked for multi-purpose products to address that problem, but didn’t find anything that did everything I needed it to do. So I decided to make my own. Originally it was just for me, but a number of my SEAL buddies hit me up about it, and I realized this was a viable business filling a growing need. I teamed up with a manufacturer and Stubble & ‘Stache was born.
How would you define your style?
My style is both edgy and and refined. One day I’ll be in dark jeans and a leather jacket, and the next I’ll be in a tailored suit sans tie or a tuxedo. I like the extremes.
What inspires you?
Untamed wilderness. I take great inspiration from being in the wild.
What is your favorite piece of clothing or accessory?
A vintage cognac brown Stockton Racer leather jacket.
I love the growing startup community in the DC area. Entrepreneurship is a roller coaster ride and it’s great to have people around who understand the journey and want to help you succeed.
Where is your favorite local place to eat?
What is your favorite thing to do in your spare time?
Anything that gets my adrenaline flowing. I love to surf, but not much of that to be had in DC.
What are you currently reading?
I normally read a lot of non-fiction, but I do like to dust off a classic now and then as a mental break. I’m starting Don Quixote.
What is your travel must-have? What do you typically carry in when you travel?
A great duffle bag, noise canceling headphones and chapstick.
Favorite place in the world?
Once I see all the world has to offer, I will let you know.
What M&G bag or accessory do you use?
Any travel tips?
I fold shirts using the Navy folding method. As for travel tips, I like to travel light and therefore pack items that are versatile. Many people find travel stressful. I feel travel is an adventure and should be enjoyed. One way to remove some stress is to travel light so you are not fumbling through security, or struggling to carry heavy bags.
What is it about leather that you think resonates with men?
Nothing is more manly than leather. It was one of the first materials humans ever used to make clothing. It resonates with our caveman roots.