Let It Pop With Double Scorpio This Holiday Season
Merry Christmas, ya filthy VHS
By Beth Sullivan,
1:40PM, Wed. Dec. 19, 2018
‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a VHS needed cleaning, not even that one you never returned to Blockbuster. “Why?” you may ask. Because the stockings had long since been stuffed with Double Scorpio’s VHS cleaner, dear qweeahs.
Helmed by co-founders/boyfriends/elves Julian Eternal and Brian (just Brian), Double Scorpio started out as a “boyfriend project.” After a few months into dating, Eternal tells Qmmunity, the “polar opposite” couple began the quest for a new, shared activity so that Eternal, a self-professed “club goblin,” and Brian, a “highly accomplished chemist,” could get to know each other a little better. Given their respective interests, concocting their own popp-, uh, we mean VHS cleaner, aka “Gay America’s favorite solvent,” seemed the natural, if half-serious, choice.
“It started as a joke,” Eternal recalls. “If we were even able to make a batch, we’d sell it to our friends and that’d be it.” Yet, they persisted, and Brian’s traditional science background coupled with Eternal’s snappy branding gleaned from working in design proved a match made in cleaning agent heaven.
Now one-and-a-half years old, the local company offers four original blends: Emerald, Sapphire, Amber, and Black. The lineup of essential scents, says Eternal, runs the gamut from mint to tobacco, with an emphasis on tip-top ingredients, a rare standard that’s hard to come by in an often murky market. “We do mean essential,” stresses Eternal. “All of our ingredients are derived from the real deal.” Double Scorpio also slings a rotating cast of limited editions year round. Right now, they’ve got all the Yuletide freaks covered with their signature Holiday blend (“It smells like an old fashioned.”), and to celebrate fall they dreamed up a zesty riff on Pumpkin Spice Latte, which, Eternal assures, “is great for having your Uggs up in the air.”
Though VHS cleaners (also sometimes marketed as “leather cleaner,” “room deodorizer,” or “tape head cleaner” in head shops or sex stores, where they’re often sold) have long been a favorite among some members of the qmmunity, Eternal says anyone looking for some help with manifesting “everything is bigger in Texas” IRL (i.e., “o → O,” he writes) can enjoy their “farm to disco” VHS cleaners’ utilitarian purposes, queer or otherwise. (And that farm wasn’t always hypothetical – Double Scorpio actually started in a lab with neighboring cows for a genuine downhome, country vibe with legit ingredients to boot.)
That being said, Double Scorpio’s edge on its competitors, believes Eternal, comes from being owned and operated by queers. Moreover, their dedication to collaborating with members of the qmmunity – like their DJ Mouthfeel-directed Christmas craft how-to video featuring Louisianna Purchase and infomercial starring p1nkstar and Y2K – is another business tenet they work hard to foster. That, and their tireless customer support, he adds. “Let me tell you, we deal with some sassy bottoms.”
For now, Double Scorpio is looking to expand their distribution, and their website says plans for shipping internationally are in the works. Austinites can snag their cleaners via Sir Rat Leather & Gear and at Package Menswear (1114 W. Fifth #202), or choose the more discreet route by purchasing online at doublescorpio.com. Running a business with your SO ain’t no easy task, but when you’re a queer in business with another queer, making products (mainly) used by queers, Eternal reminds us there are some upsides: “Neither of us have to work with straight people anymore.”
Merry Xmas to all, and to all a queer night.
Remember QTs, do your own due diligence before introducing a new cleaner to your VHS collection and be mindful of the effects it might have on yer video quality. And, as always, leave the at-home concocting to the (mostly) professionals.