James Marshall, also known as Mammoth, recently said farewell to the corporate world so he could embark on a mission to help surfers overcome one of our major afflictions: surf rash. Born and raised in New Zealand, he is now based in Europe, where he is tirelessly bringing the SETT Surf concept to life. You can help by supporting his Kickstarter campaign.
Read on to find out what SETT Surf is all about and what ‘Mammoth’ has been up to.
Hi James, we love the SETT Surf concept. A huge change for you personally, departing from the corporate world – how do you feel now that your Kickstarter campaign is gaining momentum?
Thanks! It’s absolutely immense and hard to describe to be honest. It is incredible to be able work on something you’re passionate about as opposed to just a job, then seeing it come to fruition is special, and it is also incredibly heart-warming to see so much support, from friends old and new. Even though the campaign is live and doing well (just crossed the 50% of target mark, woohoo!) there is still plenty of work to be done to make it a success, so I haven’t had a chance to sit back and enjoy it…perhaps once the campaign is finished and delivered, I will be able to look back and appreciate the whole experience a bit more. Ask me again in a couple of months haha.
What are the main challenges in creating a skincare product? And what do you love about it?
There are more challenges than I anticipated when I first had the idea, which is why I am working with experienced industry professionals. I am trying to turn one of the biggest challenges into a positive for my customers – SETT Surf Rash Cream has been developed to European Union Regulatory standards, which are regarded as the strictest in the world. This means more work for me (more tests to pass, demanding requirements and extra scrutiny) but it also means that customers can have faith that the product has been developed and produced to the highest standards in terms of safety tests, product stability and so on.
When I talk to people about the concept and what am I trying to achieve, they get really excited about the possibilities and how it could help them – I get a real buzz from that. Again, it is awesome to be involved in the surf industry too, which is something I have always wanted to do.
What’s the worst surf rash you’ve had? Do we want to know where it was? Where do surfers suffer the most?
The worst I had was probably when I was a grommet – I remember there was a week where it was pumping and I was surfing loads, but I had this rash on my neck from my wetsuit that never got a chance to heal, and it’s kind of gross, but it just became this open wound – it hurt like you wouldn’t believe and it must have looked horrible too…Never again…
The problems vary depending on the environment people are surfing in; if you’re in the tropics, rashes on the top and inside of thighs & ‘just below the waist’ seem are a big problem, as well as the torso and armpits if you aren’t using a rash vest. In colder water, wetsuits are pretty good these days, but everyone’s body shape is different so some people still have issues around the neck and armpits. Armpit rash is a killer in both instances because you feel it with every paddle…
where are your favourite places to surf back home? I need tips…
I grew up in Nelson and while good swells aren’t that common, if you know where to look on a good day it is incredible and the surf community there is super cool…I love ‘Surf City’, as a few of us call it. I also went to uni in Dunedin and northerly swells always got me really excited for surfing Aramoana or Murderers – epic breaks…I am hoping to explore the North Island a bit more this summer, but lets face it the whole of NZ’s coast has great, relatively uncrowded waves!
Ok… You’re off to your dream surf destination with two people (can be alive or not) – where are you going, who with and which 3 items do you bring?
Ooooohhhh, good question! I really want to go to the Maldives and stay in the resort with Pasta Point on my doorstep – that is definitely on my bucket list. I would love to take my Dad because surfing a perfect tropical wave like that would just blow his mind, and any of my surfer mates to share the stoke and push each other. Three items to take would have to be my camera to capture the waves and memories, my iPhone purely for music (I would probably try to do a digital detox otherwise!) and of course some SETT Surf Rash Cream…last thing I would want is a surf rash ruining the vibe, haha.
How can people connect and find out more?
People can check out the Kickstarter campaign, back the project and get some cool rewards including SETT Surf Rash Cream here http://kck.st/1RLNIo4.