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Mabey Meets: Morten Heick, Co-Founder Of MessyWeekend

MessyWeekend isn’t your average eye-wear brand. The Copenhagen-based startup maintain the high-quality status of their peers while offering affordable prices. Nickie caught up with CEO and co-founder Morten Heick to find out more about the brand and how it all started…

Nickie: Thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to chat with me. To get started, I was hoping you could tell me a little bit about yourself and your background before starting MessyWeekend.

Morten: I’m responsible for the design and production of our products, as well as the finances. Marc is the CGO and responsible for the branding and marketing of our goggles and sunglasses. Before starting MessyWeekend, I previously worked in investment banking and founded a FinTech company.

Marc has a lot of experience in marketing and previously worked as product manager for companies like Coca-Cola and Carlsberg. He was also CMO for one of the leading E-Commerce fashion platforms for independent fashion brands.

Nickie: You set up MessyWeekend in 2018 with co-founder Marc Østerskov. How did the idea come about?

Morten: Marc and I are both passionate about eyewear and never really understood why quality designer sunglasses had to cost the same as a high-end tablet. So, we thought we could create our own eyewear. Our main motivation was to create high-quality products. After doing some research, we realized we could offer high-quality designer sunglasses for a fraction the price of other brands, so we decided to just go for it. Both Marc and I are avid skiers and snowboarders, so after our successful start with sunglasses, we decided to venture into the world of snow goggles. Of course, with the same belief that they don’t need to cost a fortune.

Nickie: What’s behind the name MessyWeekend? How did it come about?

Morten: MessyWeekend is all about living life spontaneously, messily. Not planning every second out and just going wherever the night takes you. We’ve all had that moment in our lives, where we had the best time with good friends—those are the “MessyWeekends”.

We decided to come up with a brand name everybody can feel connected to and identify themselves with. Our products should accompany you while you’re out having fun—therefore, they need to be durable and also not too expensive! They shouldn’t be “too good” to take to a festival or a party. Most of our customers are pleasantly surprised by the value they get with our eyewear for the price we’re offering them at.

Morten: We have two different models in our collection: FLOAT and INUIT. All our goggles have additional features that are also offered by the other brands—double-layered lenses, anti-fog coating, scratch-resistant, anti-slip coating, interchangeable lenses and straps.

What makes our snow goggles different from others is our lens technology XE2 and XEp. They are both high contrast lenses, while the XEp is Revo-coated as well as photochromic. That means the lens adapts to changing weather conditions—it darkens when the sunlight hits and vice versa. MessyWeekend is one of the first brands to combine photochromic, high-contrast and Revo-coating in one lens.

Additionally, for every product we sell, we donate to clean 2 kg of plastic waste from our oceans. We believe it’s important for everyone to do their part, and this is how we’re doing ours.

Equipment

I’m not going to lie; ski touring is a sport for gear junkies. You can spend a lot of time and money getting the weight of your touring kit down; every kilogram counts when it comes to long multi-day expeditions. Possibly the most important piece of equipment to focus on is your boots and skis, or split-board setup if you are snowboarding. Money spent on lighter equipment is generally always worth it so make sure you opt for whatever you can afford when it comes to your hard equipment.

A lot of rental shops now carry high-end touring gear; Japan is a prime example of this, so pick the lightest setup you can find and ignore anyone who tries to tell you that you’re sacrificing downhill performance by doing so. Alpine touring (AT) skis and splitboards have improved a lot over the last decade, so the performance sacrifice is not that great when you opt for lightweight setups. On a multi-day ski touring expedition, you will spend 95% of your time in hiking mode. You do the math.

To take on a multi-day tour you will need to invest in a decent backpack as a simple ‘shovel pack’ that most guiding operations give their guests will not be sufficient to carry everything you need for the day. A 30 to 40-litre pack will give you ample space for safety gear, skins, food, water and the extra layers of clothing that will be peeled off and reapplied as you climb, stop for breaks and descend. Make sure your pack is fitted by someone who knows what they are doing and make sure it has room for your helmet either inside or strapped onto the outside with a helmet net system.


Nickie: That’s awesome that you’re able to cleaning plastic from our oceans through every pair of glasses sold. How do you achieve this?

Morten: We’re working together with NGO “4THEPLANET” (previously PROARTSO). Our colleague Juan is from Colombia, and during his studies, he worked on cleaning the beaches on the Pacific coast in Colombia.

When we founded MessyWeekend, we knew that we wanted to include CSR in our brand value and that we wanted to donate some of our profits to help the environment. We work very closely with the organization and not only help clean up the beaches but also focus on creating a sustainable solution for the locals to store and recycle the trash.

We created a short documentary about the whole project, which you can find on our website here: messyweekend.com/pages/clean-oceans.