Top 15 DTC startups revolutionizing the industry in 2023

September 14, 2023

Amazing DTC startups improving your retail experience

Direct-to-consumer (DTC) refers to companies selling their own products to the end customers. According to PipeCandy’s State of the US DTC Subscriptions — Industry Report, there are more than 27,000 DTC subscription companies in the US which is also the biggest market for this niche and this number is expected to rise exponentially.

What are DTC startups?

DTC startups are working on solutions that are helping brands and manufacturers sell their products directly to their end customers easily.


Launched in 2017, Prose patented an optimization engine that identifies ingredient combinations optimized for hair characteristics like curl pattern, scalp condition, and color-treated. Bottles are custom blended on-demand.

By providing bespoke formulas based on individual traits and customization, Prose aims to make salon-quality haircare without harmful chemicals accessible to the masses. Their personalization platform scales artisanal quality.

Function of Beauty

Launched in 2015, Function of Beauty utilizes a patented combination algorithm to create customized formulas containing only key ingredients a customer needs. Bottles are made fresh after orders.

By providing bespoke haircare based on individual traits and customization, Function of Beauty aims to help every customer achieve their ideal hair. Their personalization platform scales artisanal-quality to the masses.


Launched in 2015, Hungryroot features prepared produce, grains, sauces and snacks along with step-by-step recipes optimized to customer preferences for calorie count, diet types, and flavor profiles. Boxes ship weekly nationwide.

By tailoring nutritious grocery deliveries around personalized AI recipe recommendations, Hungryroot aims to make maintaining a healthy diet simple and sustainable. Their algorithm gets smarter with feedback over time.

Hero Cosmetics

Founded in 2017, Hero taps into hydrocolloid’s proven medical versatility through consumer-friendly formats meeting specific skincare pain points. Their novel delivery evolves a little-known specialty material into easy acne fixes.

Now a top Amazon skincare seller, Hero demonstrates demand for innovations advancing skincare’s possibilities. While thinking small about targeted patches, Hero still manages to disrupt a whole industry.

by Humankind

Launched in 2019, by Humankind tapped into growing anti-consumerism sentiment by providing ethical essentials compatible with low-waste lifestyles. Their refillable bottles and capsules reduce landfill plastics by over 50% versus mainstream brands.

With investments from environmentally-focused funds, by Humankind meets demand for sustainable options from conscious consumers. As expectations grow for businesses to cut waste, their leadership provides a blueprint for brands to align values with practices.

Magic Spoon

Launched 2018, Magic Spoon modernizes cereal by upgrading flavors from childhood into functional nutrition for today’s health-conscious adults. Despite ultra-low sugar, their cereals famously still taste just as good as people remember.

With overwhelming viral buzz and subscriptions selling out instantly, Magic Spoon is mainstreaming healthy cereal alternatives for modern lifestyles. Their product development shed new light on reinventing craveable foods.


Founded in 2019, Justo addresses economic barriers to essential nutrition exacerbated by limited grocery options in many Mexican neighborhoods. Their e-grocer brings affordable abundance to doorsteps by cutting print ads and retail store costs.

With backing from top Mexico-focused consumer investment firms, Justo is scaling town-by-town guided by a mission to enrich lives by making quality groceries economically accessible nationwide. Their growth reflects strategic social impact.

Little Sleepies

Founded in 2017 by a husband and wife, Little Sleepies pioneered exceptionally crafted matching family sleepwear as premium heirloom pieces versus disposable garments. Their fabric even becomes softer over time.

With year-round offerings in an array of ever-trending prints, Little Sleepies fosters deeper family bonds through the shared joy of cozying up in matching PJs night after night, year after year. Their story celebrates traditions through timeless quality.


Founded in 2015, Lola offers women a convenient way to have period, ovulation, and personal care products regularly delivered. Subscribers complete a profile quiz to receive customized product recommendations from Lola’s line.

By providing a tailored, discreet subscription service, Lola aims to enhance education, access, and convenience around intimate health. Their model promises a modern experience designed thoughtfully around women’s needs.

The Farmer’s Dog

Founded in 2014, The Farmer’s Dog formulations and portions are customized based on age, breed, activity level, sensitivities. Their food uses human-grade ingredients like beef, vegetables, and supplements.

By personalizing recipes and cadence, The Farmer’s Dog provides precision nutrition conveniently. This aims to make daily pet meals healthier, easier, while reducing waste.

Rowing Blazers

Founded in 2017, Rowing Blazers designs preppy apparel and accessories inspired by vintage collegiate rowing styles. Their clothing playfully remixes classic Americana and Ivy League influences.

By breathing new life into heritage fashion, Rowing Blazers created an appealing lifestyle brand championing timeless styles with modern irreverence. Their growth demonstrates the universality and longevity of classics thoughtfully reimagined.


Founded in 2011, Appointedd offers an easy-to-use cloud-based booking system enabling businesses to schedule appointments, classes, and events, process payments, track attendance, and manage customers.

By automating the scheduling process and centralizing client data, Appointedd aims to simplify business operations and maximize revenue opportunities. Their customizable solution integrates with business’ workflow needs.


Founded in 2013, Vinebox aims to make discovering new wines fun, approachable, and affordable by allowing customers to sample premium and rising star wines without committing to full bottles. Subscribers get to taste and rate 9 different wines each quarter.

By focusing on 50ml trial size pouches, Vinebox encourages exploration without waste. This caters to millennial wine enthusiasts eager to branch out without intimidation or snobbery. Their model spreads wine culture.


Launched in 2018, Hera creates skincare routines combining cleansers, toners, moisturizers, masks, and spot treatments with natural ingredients targeting problem skin issues like oiliness and breakouts.

By specializing in gentle, effective formulas catering to specific skincare struggles, Hera provides tailored solutions without irritating ingredients. Their sensitive approach aims to provide confidence and care.

 Warby Parker

Founded in 2010, Warby Parker offers stylish eyewear starting at just $95 including prescription lenses. Their innovative direct-to-consumer model cuts out traditional retail markups. The brand is also known for donating a pair for every pair sold.

By reinventing the eyewear shopping experience through e-commerce accessibility, trend-driven styles, and social good, Warby Parker attracted a loyal following and grew rapidly. But their success extends beyond fashion to transforming entire industries through innovation.


The direct-to-consumer (DTC) model has exploded in popularity in recent years, with over 27,000 DTC subscription startups now operating in the US alone. DTC represents the future of commerce, and DTC startups that embrace this model will be well-positioned to capitalize on this seismic shift in the retail landscape.

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