Just as we launched our crowdfunding campaign at the end of 2019, co-founder Claire Lettice joined We Are F, “the UK’s leading social media and creative boutique made by women for women,” to discuss all things &SISTERS. Read along as Claire gets into the nitty gritty of the brand’s journey, her personal life motto and her advice for fellow female entrepreneurs.
The interview was originally published on We are F’s blog – read the original post here.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?
I’m Claire Lettice, Founder & CEO of &SISTERS. &SISTERS is an ethical, sustainable feminine care company giving women a choice of products that are better for our bodies, our planet and womankind.
When did your journey start?
The inspiration came after realising that most women are in the dark as to the products they use on a monthly basis. Mainstream brands tend not to list their ingredients & for good reason! They’re often made from non-breathable, non-biodegradable synthetic fibres. Having been a fan of organic cotton products for a while and never one to shy away from a challenge, a more natural & healthy period that was better for the body & the planet seemed a cause worth pursuing.
What’s the idea behind your business?
I first became aware of the taboo & hardship surrounding feminine care when travelling through S.E. Asia in my mid-twenties. Whilst visiting countries such as Nepal, Myanmar & India it was hard to find sanitary pads let alone tampons. And I was the lucky one. Unable to afford menstrual products many girls & women resorted to using leaves, bark, ash, mud & even animal dung. Of course these not only caused serious infections but were often ineffective. Fast forward twenty years & whether through poverty, politics, stigma or lack of awareness, easy access to feminine care products is still not the norm in many parts of the world.
You recently launched a crowdfunding campaign, would you like to tell us more about it?
Yes, we’re raising £100,000 through an equity raise in our first ever crowdfunding round giving loyal supporters and investors the chance to own part of &SISTERS future.
Do you have a personal life motto?
What is your main struggle in being female entrepreneurs?
I think all entrepreneurs have the same struggles, male or female. As with all start-up businesses there are just never enough hours in a day!
How do you overcome it?
Having spent almost two years on the business now, it’s very easy to get tied down with small things. When I look at how far the business has come in a reasonably short period of time, we have made a lot of headway.
What was your biggest professional achievement during your entrepreneur journey?
It’s the parts that make the greatest whole – there are so many things I am extremely proud of, and choosing one would be unfair, but anything from being listed in gorgeous boutiques, to making a mark on the changing face of feminine care.
What is the greatest lesson you’ve learned from being an entrepreneur?
Start every day fresh and try not to let the troubles of yesterday affect your work today.
How do you find inspiration on an average day? Do you have any rituals?
I find inspiration everywhere, I am an avid reader of books, magazines, blogs and everything in between. I am constantly inspired by other people…but in terms of rituals, start and end every day with a good cup of tea!
How did social media help you to promote your business?
I love social media and its ability to engage so quickly and readily with others on issues affecting us all. I especially love Instagram as it’s so visual; I think humans are extremely visual creatures so we spend a lot of time crafting our content and engaging with our audience.
Do you have any advice to give to the new female entrepreneurs?
Stick with it and stay curious.