A panel of potential investors threw cold water on a Scarborough High School graduate’s potential cure for bed head Friday night.

They derided Max Valverde’s “Morninghead” invention as “totally unnecessary” and nothing more than a “tchotchke” – or knickknack – that people might buy as a joke.

The verdict was delivered on national television, no less.

Valverde, 29, who graduated from Scarborough High in 2002 and now lives outside Boston, was on “Shark Tank,” an ABC-TV show that gives inventors a few minutes to present their business ideas or products to five investors, who then kick it around and see which one might want to swing a deal to invest in return for a piece of the business.

Or, in the case of Morninghead, to see who could turn it down the quickest.

Valverde, who left an engineering sales job to devote himself to Morninghead, said he developed the product as a way to deal with his routine of working out at night and showering before bedtime, only to wake up with an unruly head of hair in the morning and no time or need to shower again.


Morninghead is similar to a shower cap, yet it’s designed to wet hair – not keep it dry – quickly and neatly. The cap is lined with a water-absorbing material. Pour some water in, put the cap on, rub it onto your head and – voila! – you’ve turned a formerly chaotic head of hair into wet tresses that are ready to be tamed by a comb or brush.

Valverde might have sensed that he would have a hard sell ahead of him when he saw he was going to have to pitch his “paradigm shift in morning grooming” to a quintet of investors that included two bald guys.

But these were the same people who on Friday night’s show invested in an energy bar with crickets as the main ingredient, a $250 garage door lock and a pay-per-view service for digital textbooks. Given that track record, would it be so hard to attract an investment in a straightforward $7.99 grooming tool?

Apparently so.

“What else you got? This sucks,” said venture capitalist Kevin O’Leary, one of the bald investors.

Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks pro basketball team and noted hothead, wasn’t interested in something to wet his hair.


“It’s not going to go anywhere,” he said.

Barbara Corcoran, whom the show describes as a real estate mogul, offered up the “totally unnecessary” comment and told Valverde that a wet washcloth would do the job just as well as Morninghead.

Daymond John, identified as a fashion and branding expert – and bald-headed rich guy No. 2 – also passed and then O’Leary jumped back in to deride Morninghead as “cuckoo on a stick.”

So, that’s a no?

Valverde, who didn’t return calls seeking a comment Friday night, knew the outcome of the show before it aired, but had been sworn to secrecy. However, he didn’t seem daunted in an interview with the Portland Press Herald earlier this week, saying he was going to prepare his website, morninghead.com, for the deluge of hits that exposure on the show might bring.

He also said he was hopeful that being on the show might catch the eye of another investor – presumably one with hair – who will help him get Morninghead in the hands, and on the heads, of millions of bed head-afflicted consumers.

Edward D. Murphy can be contacted at 791-6465 or at:


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