As part of our ongoing Female Forces series to celebrate Women’s History Month (March), we’re highlighting some of the leading women who are changing the beauty, wellness, and personal care space with innovative approaches to wellbeing.
Not only are these emerging brands led by women, but they’re also giving back to important causes. Whether they are challenging the everyday consumer to rethink wellness, or empowering women in third-world countries through education, they are all making important strides to harness the power of community and sustainability.
1. Molly Hayward of Cora Provides Non-Toxic Feminine Care and Education to Women
Molly Hayward is the Founder and Chief Brand Officer of Cora, a modern, socially conscious women’s personal care company. Hayward was the first entrepreneur in the menstrual care and women’s wellness spaces to establish a modern and pro-social brand. She continues to lead the industry by restructuring the narrative around topics not often discussed in mainstream media or polite conversation, like menstruation and postpartum, and providing a better choice for women as they address natural occurrences within their bodies. With each monthly supply of period products sold, Cora donates sustainable menstrual products and reproductive health education to girls in developing countries and has provided more than 10 million menstrual pads to-date.
On International Women’s Day (March 8), Cora will launch its #FormerCurrentChallenge campaign where they will ask women to share their former/current photos and stories of personal evolution and challenge three friends to share theirs. For every post, Cora will give pads and health education to support the future of girls in need.
2. Kiana Reeves of Foria Wellness Puts Women in the Sexual Driver’s Seat
We are at the helm of a pleasure revolution as women everywhere are prioritizing sexual pleasure and an industry that has been predominantly male-serving to-date is pivoting to meet the unmet needs of women everywhere. Meet Kiana Reeves, certified doula, somatic sex educator, innate postpartum care provider, pelvic care practitioner, and Foria’s Chief Brand Educator. She is committed to eliminating the social stigma around female pleasure by teaching people to be more connected to their own sexual experiences and their bodies. Harnessing her many certifications, she drives Foria’s solution-based innovation pipeline, developing products like Awaken Arousal Oil and Basics CBD Suppositories to market, which help to enhance pleasure, relieve pain, and support optimal wellbeing for women and people with vulvas.
As March is National Endometriosis Awareness Month, Foria is giving away 1,000 4-Packs of its Basics CBD Suppositories and educational materials to raise awareness for endometriosis and create a safe space to learn, connect, and find relief.
3. Susan Griffin-Black of EO Products Prioritizes Communities in Need of Respite
Susan Griffin-Black is the Founder and Co-CEO of EO Products, makers of EO and Everyone for Everybody. As one of the early pioneers in the clean beauty and personal care movement and a leader in the naturals space, Griffin-Black has been a champion for conscious, purpose-led businesses around the world. EO Products manufactures its products in a zero-waste factory and is B Corp Certified. With a focus on transparency and authenticity, the brand donates aromatherapy products to help give anyone in need a moment of respite and makes financial contributions to organizations that serve local communities.
In celebration of International Women’s Day, EO Products has partnered with the Women’s Earth Alliance. For every purchase made on eoproducts.com on March 8, EO Products will donate $1 to the organization to equip women with the skills and tools they need to protect the Earth and strengthen communities from the inside out.
4. Gigi Goldman and Kiana Cabell of Kopari Are Revitalizing Communities With Coconuts
Gigi Goldman and Kiana Cabell, the co-founders of coconut-based beauty brand Kopari, first visited the town of Davao, Philippines with some of their family members in March 2019 to help build 20 homes to house 20 local farming families to start what is now known as Kopari Village. They likewise introduced clean water access to village families for the first time and donated school supplies to the 180 children who live in the village to help them thrive. In 2020, Kopari aims to build an additional 20 homes to house 20 additional families, in partnership with Gawad Kalinga and previous charitable partner, Waves4Water.
5. Danna Pratte of The Candidly Isn’t Anti-Wellness, She’s Just Tired of the Buzzword
Wellness means something different to everyone — and those of us in endless pursuit of it are often confronted by an industry mired with grey language (what is clean beauty anyway?), misleading promises of enhanced wellbeing or outdated one-size-fits-all advice. That’s why Danna Pratte created The Candidly — a new platform for the modern consumer who demands transparency and candid conversation. Designed to be “a new wellness brand for people who sort of hate wellness brands,” as described on the platform’s website, The Candidly is taking a fresh approach to opening up the conversation on personal care. Expect to find engaging lifestyle content that ranges from opinion pieces to articles about tampons and women’s health.
6. Sara Cullen of GEM Is Redefining the Women’s Multivitamin
Sara Cullen is the CEO and Founder of GEM, a pioneer in clean nutritional technology producing convenient, real food products that optimize daily nutrition. GEM is a chewable bite of daily nutrition designed for humankind and backed y science. Cullen has a BS in International Agricultural Development Studies from Cornell University and has worked with women entrepreneurs and farmers in sustainable food networks all over the world, from Morocco and Kenya to India and Vietnam. As a two-time entrepreneur in the food and beverage world, and a former Venture for America Fellow, Cullen is passionate about redesigning a healthier future for women and fundamentally changing the way we nourish ourselves. GEM vitamins feature 13 whole plant ingredients that deliver more than 15 key vitamins, minerals, and herbs — no fillers or preservatives, just complementary nutrients that are easier to absorb, and easier on the planet.
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