Hello Period's co-founder and Cheerleading Captain, Robyn, shares 5 things she's learnt since starting Hello Period.
Starting a business is quite a ride. There will always be tears and sleepless nights, but don't let that put you off. Creating a business that does good and changes lives has been beyond awesome for me. In fact, it's the best thing I've ever done.
Here are the top 5 things I've learnt since starting Hello Period:
- Periods ain't easy. One of the great things about owning a period care business is that people open up to you about their own period experiences when they find out what you do. I used to feel like I was the only person who struggled with heavy periods because I never talked about my cycle with my friends. One of the reasons we started was to encourage people with periods to be more open about them. I've learnt so much from others about managing endometriosis and period pain.
- Don't let people put you off trying something new. For many people, sustainable period care is a foreign concept, and, like anything new, it can take a while for people to get their heads around. I've learnt not to take the 'oh yuck, I'm never trying that' personally. I know that sustainable period care is the way of the future, but habits take a long time to break, so at Hello Period, education is critical. Starting an informed discussion about why we exist and what problems we solve is the way to get people thinking. The curious voice inside my head led me to make the leap and try a menstrual cup - but only after years of wondering how they work - and then, of course, my first reaction was, 'why didn't I make the switch years ago!?'.
- Younger shoppers are more aware of what they put in their bodies and are more mindful of their environmental impact. They give me hope that the next generation will not put up with single-use period products like tampons and pads. Good quality, reusable products such as menstrual cups, menstrual discs, period underwear and washable pads are better for them, will save them money and have a much reduced environmental impact. As Whitney Houston said, "I believe that children are our future".
- Periods affect everyone so let's talk about them openly. I once spoke to an audience that was 95% male, and initially, I thought they might not want to hear about periods, but they were totally engaged and interested. Even if someone doesn't experience periods, someone they love does. We need to discuss periods more, especially with those who don't have them. Knowledge is the key to ending the crazy taboos and stigmas that still exist around periods.
- Starting a business from scratch is a total ride - filled with ups and downs. Having someone you can trust alongside you helps a huge amount. You'll get advice from all directions but never underestimate the power of gut instinct. Everyone said 'don't go into business with your best friend' - but it was the best decision ever. When we started, people said sustainable period products would never catch on. A few short years later, they are definitely on the way to becoming mainstream.
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