Beatrice Dixon is the founder of The Honey Pot Company, a plant-based feminine hygiene line created to provide women with healthy alternatives to feminine care.
The Honey Pot Company began with a dream — literally. In 2014, Dixon was struggling with an ongoing case of bacterial vaginosis. She visited her doctor and tried everything they recommended, but nothing worked.
Early one morning she was visited by her grandmother in a dream. She gave Dixon a list of ingredients and told her what to do.
When Dixon woke up, she immediately went to Whole Foods, where she was working at the time, and got the ingredients. Within a few days, the infection was gone. It was at this stage Dixon started working on Honey Pot and giving away the product to friends and seeing their results.
"There has never been a moment — not one time — to this day that I have ever questioned if this was a business if this was viable," Dixon says. "So when I was giving it away, I was giving it away because I needed to make sure that it worked. Because I had the intention of making it work."
Dixon says her "hack" for getting into retail comes down to creating prototypes that big retailers will appreciate as a token of commitment.
"When you're beginning a relationship, it's just like beginning any relationship. You got to go into that thing, intentional, and showing them from the beginning, how you run your ship. And so it's really important to show them how committed [you are] because prototypes are not cheap, and that communicates to the buyer that you came ready and that you're willing to show them where you're going," she says.
Today The Honey Pot Company sells feminine care products nationwide at Target, Walmart, Whole Foods, Walgreens and retailers across the U.S.
In this episode of the Behind Her Empire podcast, Dixon talks about starting her plant-based feminine care company, scaling the business from her kitchen to mass production, advice she has about getting your product into retail outlets, candid thoughts around fundraising and more.
dot.LA Audience Engagement Editor Luis Gomez contributed to this post.
On this week's episode of the Behind Her Empire podcast, meet Alex Friedman, the co-founder of feminine care brand LOLA.
LOLA was created to address the need for more transparency in women's health. It was begun as a passion product to understand whether women would be interested in a tampon product made from healthier ingredients. Wince then, it has grown to create its own feminine care items free from harmful chemicals.
As Friedman and her partner began building LOLA, they realized that what was lacking was a comprehensive understanding of women's health.
"Nobody had any idea what we were talking about," Friedman says. "Ninety-five percent of the people we were meeting with were men. And they didn't have any personal understanding of or empathy for a woman's reproductive experience and had never seen or touched a tampon."
Friedman and her partner were able to "lean into" the knowledge gap, something she says created "warm friendships and relationships" and was "fun and productive."
Friedman started her career at a private equity consulting firm after graduating from Dartmouth. She later attended the Wharton School of Business, and went on to work as an investment consultant and analyst.
She shares how she was able to overcome her fears to take the leap into entrepreneurship — and what other entrepreneurs should keep in mind.
"It's important for founders to be thinking about the problem that they're trying to solve — rather than the company that they want to form — and focus on solving that problem," Friedman says.."Because if it's a real problem, and you solve it correctly, you will have success."
Friedman discusses how motherhood has made her a better communicator, the high value she places on mentorship, her tips for fundraising and how to overcome doubts around business ideas.
Alex Friedman is the co-founder of LOLA.
"I have very little kids, and so I have to communicate very clearly and simply all the time. And I think that actually is a positive for a business leader. Right, as I have just be able to very clearly and quickly articulate expectations. And I have found that that's a positive for me, too."
dot.LA Engagement Intern Colleen Tufts contributed to this post.
While the fashion industry reckons with female body image positivity, investors embraced plus-size retailer Torrid in its Wall Street debut Thursday.
Torrid, an apparel company for women who wear sizes 10 to 30, shares rose 15% closing at $24.15. The City of Industry-based company trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker "CURV" priced its IPO of 11 million shares at $21 each, putting the company at a $2.3 billion valuation.
In 2020, Torrid generated $974 million in net sales, slightly lower than its 2019 sales because some of its stores closed during the pandemic, while its online sales grew.
The apparel company is designing for women aged 25 to 40 years old who are looking for stylish, sexy clothing that fits well.
It is part of the growing movement to focus less on size 0 models and to promote body positivity, female empowerment and style, regardless of size.
"Growing celebration of femininity, inclusivity and self-identity, along with the emergence of plus-size celebrities and influencers, inspires young curvy customers to demand more flattering and stylish clothing they are proud to wear," Torrid wrote in its prospectus filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The company described its products as delivering "a superior fit for the curvy woman that makes her love the way she looks and feels."
Plus-size apparel and intimates are an $85 billion market in the U.S., Torrid estimates. And as of 2019, two-thirds of all women in the U.S. wore plus-size clothing.
Victoria's Secret, which has been criticized for its lack of diversity in models, announced last month it was retiring it's "Angels" and replacing them with women such as soccer star Megan Rapinoe, actress and tech investor Priyanka Chopra Jones and Paloma Elsesser, a plus-size model and inclusivity advocate.
Torrid said surveys have found that 69% of plus-size women find it difficult to find clothes that fit well and are stylish. Many clothing companies use a "grading up" method, offering their regular sized clothes in larger sizes rather than design clothes for a curvy body.
"Through our product and brand experience, we connect with customers in a way that other brands, many of which treat plus-size customers as an afterthought, have not," the company wrote.
Torrid did not respond to a request for comment, but believes plus-size women would spend more on clothing if they had more options.
More than half of Torrid's customers in 2020 were younger than 40 and the average size of clothing purchased was 18. It sold to 3.2 million customers in 2020. Net income in 2020 was $25 million, down from $42 million in 2019.
But the company which relies in part on its mall sales, is facing stiff competition from online brands.
Relive all the action from the @Torrid (NYSE: $CURV) IPO 🎥 https://t.co/Z1ovHSLcJd— NYSE 🏛 (@NYSE 🏛)1625240205.0