The most successful businesses solve real problems that real people have. Crystal Etienne is the first African American woman to build a million dollar company in two years based on a common, yet taboo topic: hygiene. Crystal asked, why settle for products that were designed decades ago, are uncomfortable, unsafe, and which often fail? She created the solution: PantyProp, an American-made e-commerce fashion forward hygiene brand that offers a comprehensive collection of 30 unique items, including activewear, swimwear, sleepwear, and underwear. Since its launch in 2015, PantyProp has experienced explosive growth; in 2017 it has grown by 400% to cross $1 million in revenues through word of mouth only. Crystal is a Beyond Mom of two children, a daughter and son. She shares with us why she is passionate about teaching young girls about hygiene and offers tips for moms on how to approach this subject with their daughters.
What makes you a Beyond Mom?
I am a Beyond Mom because I am on a mission to help all women and girls know they can #doanything. I have a true passion and dedication to help moms help our daughters to be confident. I believe that girls and women deserve to be empowered with knowledge and products for their personal care.
What are the parts of you that have grown and expanded since becoming a mom?
Since becoming a mom, I have grown to love and appreciate the little things in life. Only a mom can appreciate things that are so narrow and small. They are the most important. I also see new ways to create solutions to problems I didn’t understand before. For example, in my twenties, I gave birth to my daughter. One day out-the-blue, I noticed I would laugh or cough and had no control over life’s pesky leaks. At first I felt embarrassed, but I couldn’t find a solution on the market. The world is shifting away from sanitary pads but the insertables are dangerous, riddled with chemicals and often fail. Many people choose comfort even though they are unsafe.
As my daughter was growing up, she got nervous to go to swim meets on her periods. I couldn’t bear the idea of her feeling ashamed or awkward. I wanted her to know she could do anything with confidence!
So I created the solution. PantyProp is a health-leisure brand that offers a comprehensive line of hygiene fashion wearables with built-in technology for incontinence and feminine care.
Do you have a Beyond dream that you are pursuing?
I don’t believe in dreams, but I do believe in daydreaming. My biggest daydream is to provide a comforting and confident experience like no other through my company pantyprop.com. I dream of being the Sarah Blakely of health-leisure, offering a comprehensive line of activewear, swimwear, sleepwear, and underwear for anyone to navigate life’s pesky leaks with confidence.
What relationships and activities help you stay connected to yourself?
My marriage is my comfort place. My husband is my serene. He is such a calm person that his existence calms me when I am stressed or being hyper. Running a business is a rollercoaster, my husband is always there to catch me after that first drop.
Do you have a favorite quote or mantra that you live by?
You cannot please everyone. Keep your focus on the 99 positives instead of the 1 negative.
What causes and topics are you most passionate about right now?
Teaching young girls about good hygiene. The mother-daughter relationship is one of the strongest bonds in the world. If I can get one mom to talk to her daughter openly about feminine care and her daughter receives the message – my day is complete. Check out our blog for ideas on how to address these topics with ease.
How do you think we can change our culture from one in which a woman is expected to be a “perfect mother” to one in which she is encouraged to discover and explore her evolving self?
The perfect mother is one who can put a smile on her children’s face. Where the smile comes from or from what, does not matter – it could be the smallest thing. If we can get women to realize this, they should smile too.
Favorite go-to’s for:
Beyond Food (what do you cook & where do you go?)
I love to make cakes.
Beyond Content (Books & Podcasts)
Any content about a successful woman.
Leggings + any cute Top to try and hide the fact its JUST leggings.
Working on that.