I get inspired everyday by people doing amazing things.
Launching a product is hard (fun, but hard) and it’s so energizing to see people doing it really really right.
I wanted to take the time to showcase a few of the companies + women + brands + products that I'd love to give a huge high-five to.
Keep it up all you beautiful people!!
(three friends) + (some gnarly period accidents) + (100 million girls missing school just b/c of their periods) + (3.5 years of R&D) + (like, 30 badass team members) = the THINX you know and love and bleed into today.
THINX make antimicrobial, moisture-wicking, leak-resistant, and absorbent PERIOD-SAFE underwear. All this tech means girls wearing THINX stay dry. They come in a bunch of styles, like ‘Hiphugger’, ‘Cheeky’, and ‘Thong’. Their brand is everything you want it to be.
The use of egg imagery and a nod to the over-the-top tampon adds of the past make me smile every time. And I can only imagine how many of the models are holding back full-on laughter as they strike those random poses.
But their products can also be a serious lifesaver to an under-appreciated, and under-acknowledged issue. It's helping women who feel they need to conceal their period in the first place, due to period shaming, or guys making stupid jokes about their mood. And it's contributing to the growing conversation and awareness about menstruation that is shrouded in a LOT of stigma and shame all over the world. To quote a recent article:
By talking about our periods, acknowledging that we bleed, we can normalize what is, after all, normal. Menstruation is a completely natural biological process and nothing to be ashamed of. We bleed; and every single person in this world was born to someone who bled.
They are addressing a serious topic in a meaningful way, but not taking themselves tooooo seriously. I love that. MINGO approved!
“Fashion forward sexecessories for bitches who get shit done.”
This is another great example of a company that’s being bold, but having some fun at the same time. It’s amazing to think that it took Sex and the City to popularize today's more complex, modern vibrators. Self-high five! But Unbound takes us further:
“We believe most women can derive enhanced sexual pleasure from the nerve-ending stimulation that vibrators provide. However, different women prefer different types of stimulation (e.g. external/clitoral vs. internal/g spot) and we try to provide a diverse high-quality selection and guidance around the different types of vibrators that exist so that you can choose the best vibrator(s) for you.”
Big shout-out to their funny, sexy, borderline eratic (in a good way) Instagram page, with enough NSFW memes to make that secret drawer in your bedside table blush.
The women who founded Unbound want sexual wellness to be less scary, more fun, body safe, and affordable. I love that. MINGO approved!
Photo Credit: Describe the Fauna
I could listen to these ladies all day. Every week, Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman call each other to discuss all sorts of important topics. They launched in 2014 and now have hundreds of thousands of listeners. Aminatou and Ann talk about things that other people won’t. And everytime they engage in another real, frank and vulnerable conversation, we all shine a little bit brighter. These days it’s easy to shy away from hard opinions or controversial topics for fear of being torn apart by anonymous trolls. It just doesn’t feel worth it.
Amitanou and Ann remind us that these are conversations worth having, and importantly, they believe that it’s not just about them, or shouting loudly from a soapbox. It’s about the collective power of lots of women having these conversations with each other. Their tagline says it so well, ‘a podcast for long-distance besties everywhere.' Accompanying their podcast is a newsletter 'The Bleed' that is monthly awesomeness for women everywhere.
In December, Aminatou was diagnosed with endometrial cancer. Thankfully, her doctors caught it early. Her friends organized ‘Bleedin’ for Amina’, a multi-city blood drive in honour of Aminatou. This is an amazing example of building on personal vulnerability to support so many others. You can learn more about the initiative and the drive here.
Underlying CYG and all they do is Shine Theory. Ultimately, this is about going from jealous resentment of that amazing woman you know to being friends with that amazing woman you know.
“Foregoing the internal ranking system in favor of being your best self and helping your girlfriends do the same” (Ann Friedman).
I love that. MINGO approved!
"The No. 1 Kegel trainer worldwide. Strengthen your pelvic floor for fewer leaks within weeks."
First: 10-points for that rhyming headline, ‘fewer leaks within weeks’. Ha!
Kegel exercises are designed to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which support the uterus, bladder, small intestine and rectum. Weaker pelvic floor muscles could mean anything from a little bit of pee while sneezing to more concerning urinary incontinence. Lots of factors can contribute to weakening muscles, like pregnancy, surgery, weight, and ageing.
Elvie’s trainer (pictured) brings traditional Kegel exercises to the 21st century. You place the device inside you, connect to the app (yep!), exercise, and track your progress with instant biofeedback. You squeeze, the visualizer reacts. The app offers little five-minute workouts that make a mundane exercise really fun. Actually. It looks more like a game than a health app. The trainer itself is safe, durable, portable, and all that good stuff. Not surprising that Elvie has won a bunch of design and innovation awards. They did this right.
Elvie has made a device that I would actually look forward to using, rather than dreading some exercise routine my doctor recommends. It addresses a need that a lot of women have, in a beautiful way, and contributes to the conversation about women’s health and wellness. I love that. MINGO approved!
Questions? Comments? Collaboration ideas? Let's chat!