When Jared Leto faced the press last October to promote the launch of his skin and hair care line Twentynine Palms, the Oscar-winning actor and rock star said that he’s asked “all the time” to divulge the secret to his youthful appearance. “I do have a good answer for that, but I probably won’t tell you,” teased the 51-year-old to Men’s Health. “Just to keep everybody guessing. Really, honestly, at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter.”
There’s a more pressing question in the air now for Leto and his Twentynine Palms celebrity brand, and this answer does matter: What happened?
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Less than a year after a high-profile launch — touted in write-ups from Vogue to Vanity Fair and toasted at a starry Chateau Marmont party that hosted Andrew Garfield, Imagine Dragons’ Dan Reynolds and former Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele — sales have ceased on the brand’s website. All the products, everything from the Mesquite Springs hydrating serum ($69) and Santa Ana Salve facial moisturizer ($87) to the Cosmic Cypress facial cleanser ($39) and Mira Luna eye cream ($97), are listed as “Coming Soon,” with no options available to purchase. Twentynine Palms’ Instagram account has gone dark and has not shared a new post since March 2.
Followers and fans are frustrated. “What’s going on with this brand?” a user named Ed asked on Instagram. “No product since April and, above all, no reply to messages sent to Twentynine Palms account. It would be time to give some news, at least out of respect for your customers. I’m disappointed. It’s a real shame.”
Leto co-founded the brand with Jonathan Keren, inspired by the “hallucinogenic beauty” of the Mojave desert, where Leto owns a home and can often be found rock-climbing and adventuring. Keren was the brains behind the Mediterranean skin care and wellness company Maapilim, of which Leto was a fan. According to the Twentynine Palms company bio, Leto was drawn to Maapilim’s “aromas and textures,” and he arranged a meeting with Keren. “In an act of kismet, the two hit it off and began dreaming of new horizons and the potential for creative partnerships,” per the site. According to reports at the time of launch, the Twentynine Palms co-founders planned to expand beyond skin and hair care into lucrative categories like fragrance, home goods and design.
“I wasn’t looking to start a brand. It happened organically. I was considering investing in Maapilim,” Leto told Fast Company. “They wanted to break new ground, and they were infectious in their enthusiasm. I thought it sounded like a risky undertaking. So, it was probably the right one.”
Maybe not. There’s a reason why it’s not possible to buy products or reach anyone at Twentynine Palms right now: The company appears to be done. Leto severed ties with the brand “many months” ago over claims including breach of contract, per Leto’s rep. Keren’s LinkedIn profile states that he also exited his role as co-founder and CEO of Twentynine Palms long ago, actually two months after launch in December 2022.
“Jared Leto is proud of the creative team at Twentynine Palms and what they accomplished. However, many months ago, Leto terminated his relationship with the parent company Maapilim Ltd due to, what he believes was a breach of contract and mismanagement by the brand operator,” Leto’s rep, Robin Baum, tells The Hollywood Reporter.
THR reached out to Keren multiple times over the past several days requesting an interview as well as a response to the allegations of breach of contract and mismanagement. Should he respond, this story will be updated accordingly. After exiting Twentynine Palms, Keren has reengaged as co-founder of Maapilim from December 2022 to the present, per LinkedIn.
Aside from his seemingly ageless face and rock-star credentials as the frontman for 30 Seconds to Mars, one of the reasons Leto’s foray into the beauty space garnered so much attention is because he’s among only a handful of A-list male stars that have expanded their portfolios into the category. That group includes Brad Pitt (Le Domaine), Harry Styles (Pleasing), Pharrell Williams (Humanrace), Travis Barker (Barker Wellness), John Legend (Loved01) and Idris Elba (S’Able).
Twentynine Palms may have faced its final sunset, but there are still products available. THR located items for sale on Fred Segal’s website as well as Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop. In the city of Twentynine Palms, boutique shop Desert General had products on its shelves when a THR staffer stopped in last Friday.
As for what Leto will do next, he previously hinted that when he invests his time and attention in companies, part of that process — especially with new ventures or his interests in the tech field — includes remaining ready to pivot. He told Fast Company, “It’s important to be nimble and to listen and learn and to be able to apply that to what you do next.”
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