208: How to Choose Quality Materials for A New Consumer Product

208: Choosing Quality Materials for Your Consumer Product

December 28, 2023

With Kelley Thornton, CEO of Tiege Hanley, Inc.

Hosted by Kevin Mako, President of MAKO Design + Invent

208: Choosing Quality Materials for Your Consumer Product
208: Choosing Quality Materials for Your Consumer Product

Kelley Thornton is the CEO of Tiege Hanley, Inc., a direct-to-consumer skincare product brand for men that has sold more than 16 million products in over 100 countries. Today, Kelley will share valuable knowledge for inventors, startups, and small manufacturers on the importance of materials selection for your new hardware product, how to ensure the use of the best quality materials when working with manufacturers, and why materials are important to both your customers and your product business.

Here are the key takeaways from the episode:

  • What are hardware product materials, and why are they important?
  • Make a decision about the level of quality you want to achieve with your product up front because this will guide your materials decision-making.
  • Intuitive materials decision-making is salient to having great products.
  • Understanding the chemistry of ingredients is so important to delivering product results.
  • Calling out the ingredients at the manufacturing level will ensure the production of a quality product.
  • All manufacturers have strengths and weaknesses, so make sure everyone is on board with the way the product is formed.
  • Be clear about intellectual property, especially if the manufacturer makes changes that you agree with when choosing quality materials for your consumer product!
  • Another key reason you should push for high-quality materials is that it will serve as a reason why your customers should choose your product brand over others.
  • You can also use the quality of your ingredients in your marketing efforts!
  • Always start with higher quality materials and then, over time, figure out how to value engineer that into cost savings through scale, innovation, etc., to bring your costs down.
  • Ensure that your margins are high enough to afford quality, and that should be the case when you’ve got a new proprietary product.

Kelley Thornton Links:

LinkedIn | Tiege Hanley, Inc.

The Product Startup Podcast Links:


Instagram | LinkedIn | Facebook Page | Facebook Group | Pinterest | Twitter

MAKO Design Links:


YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | Facebook | Pinterest | Twitter

Kevin Mako Links:

Instagram | LinkedIn | Quora | Facebook | Twitter

Producer: MAKO Design + Invent is the original firm providing world-class consumer product development services tailored to startups, small manufacturers, and inventors. Simply put, we are the leading one-stop shop for developing your physical product from idea to store shelves, all in a high-quality, cost-effective, and timely manner. We operate as one powerhouse 30-person product design team spread across 4 offices to serve you (Austin, Miami, San Francisco, & Toronto). We have full-stack in-house industrial design, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, patent referral, prototyping, and manufacturing services. To assist our startup and inventor clients, in addition to the above, we help with business strategy, product strategy, marketing, and sales/distribution for all consumer product categories.