The J Spot-light with Vee Underwear

The J Spot-light with Vee Underwear

Sometimes you need a reason for a get together. Catch up with old friends, kick the tin and discuss all the good things in the world. World Health Day on Sunday 7 April is just that for Jonny–a chance for likeminded friends to share purpose, talk about vaginas and dreams to change the world.
In celebration of a day dedicated to the health of Queen Mother Nature and her inhabitants, Jonny's teamed up with best sustainable brands in the biz for a giveaway. Find out how you can win a prize pack featuring Tom Organic, Earth Bottles, Mister Jones Health, your's truly and Vee Underwear here.
And in the meantime, meet founder of Jonny's new favourite underwear brand, Vee.
Hi Emma, Jonny is excited to have the clever founder of Vee Underwear here today. Can you tell us a bit about you and Vee?
I’m excited to be here chatting to the clever ladies behind Jonny! A little bit of a background on me… I started out my career in the advertising industry and absolutely loved it. However, the increasing number of client creative directors, red tape, internal politics and endless late nights quickly sucked the love out of my passion for the industry. 

To keep my creativity alive, I always had a side project on the go whether that be researching a business idea, doing some kind of a short course or attempting a DIY. It wasn’t until I spotted a gap in the market for breathable underwear that placed vaginal health, comfort and ass-thetics at its core that I felt I had found my 'thing.'

For about a year and a half I was using every spare moment I had to develop Vee’s brand and product. However, it wasn’t until the start of 2018 when I realised ‘you can’t do it all’ (something I still have to remind myself on the reg) that I decided to call it quits, salvage what was left of my passion for the industry and throw the skills that I had learnt into Vee Underwear. Six months later in November 2018 we launched and are supporting healthier, happier hoo-ha’s one top drawer at a time.

What inspired the concept?  
The idea was born out of a personal need for breathable underwear that fit comfortably and didn’t look daggy. 

A few years back I went through a frustrating period were I was regularly getting thrush… or ‘irritation’ as I like to call it when I’m trying to be a little more PG (not my strongest point). After too many visits to my local GP, I wasn’t going to take ‘Canesten’ for the answer and this was when the GP finally suggested a seemingly simple preventative–investing in breathable cotton underwear.

To my surprise, this ‘simple task’ quickly became impossible.                          

Breathable cotton underwear that fit comfortably and wouldn’t be embarrassing to wear in front of my new man-friend just didn’t exist.

After much web-trawling and trying on horrifically unflattering underwear, I clicked across bamboo fabric and discovered that bamboo fabric is not only breathable, but offers numerous additional health benefits in comparison with cotton and is significantly more sustainable.                           

Inspired by the possibility of creating a female focused product and educating women on how simple environmental factors such as underwear can affect their vagina health, I set out to create Vee Underwear.

Did 5-year old Emma think this would be where you ended up? What did you aspire to be at that age?
Oh dear, 5 year old Emma was your classic Disney loving, aspiring actress. However, once I started school at age 6, my business brain kicked and I mastered the lunchbox exchange. I successfully swapped my staple muesli bar for a variety of lamingtons, roll-ups and cheese stringers for a solid year. Don’t ask me how I did it. 

Then at age 13, I made my mum sign up as an Avon sales representative on my behalf (as you can’t get a job until you are 14 and 9 months in Australia), and when I was 15 I had a jewellery stall at my grandparents’ local market. Looking back, I think in some ways I always had aspirations to have my own business. 

Avon!? Incredible. So, basically a hustler from day dot. Where or who do you draw inspiration for with Vee and for yourself?
Vee’s tone of voice aims to mimic a conversation you might have with your girlfriends after a few wines: nothings off limits and it’s a bit of a laugh. Therefore, I draw on my own social experiences and those of the women in my life. We want to be the voice that represents what every women’s thinking, but might be too shy or embarrassed to speak. We hope that by representing those voices we might empower more women to feel comfortable talking about taboo topics and normalise vaginal health talk. 

In terms of drawing on inspiration for myself, I feel really inspired by like minded women in business. It really excites me to see other women creating amazing brand platforms and that gives me extra kick. I can’t explain it, but good ideas really motivate me to foster my own ideas. 

Why is natural and eco so important to you and the brand? 
As a community we are becoming more educated and conscious of where our products are coming from and the impact that they have on the world. I think it would be silly for any brand to ignore this social shift towards sustainability, not only ethically, but also from a consumer demand point of view. 

In addition, Vee's brand mission is to empower women to live healthier, happier day-to-day lives. This mission extends beyond our physical products, as far as the impact we have have on preserving the planet that these women live on. 

Jonny could not agree more. Kudos to you Emma! Share your favourite statistic with everyone.
The stat that stands out for me – and not going to lie, also makes me feel a little better about that recurring ‘irritation’ I was talking about earlier–is that 75% of women will experience thrush in their lifetime, ouch. 

Woah, big ouch. Do you think there is a growing awareness and conscious decision to look after the health of women and their lady bits?
I think that there is definitely a growing consciousness around vaginal health, however, I believe that we still have a long way to go. I think that if more brands like Jonny and Vee normalise conversations around sex and lady bits, then the closer we will come to creating a community where talking about ‘private parts’ is the norm. I think that when this happens, we’ll live in a world where women are consciously buying products with health at the forefront of their minds. 

What does a day in the life of Emma and Vee look like?
Look, it’s not glam that’s for sure. I’m up by 7am, I pop on my active wear with every intention to do a hit or yoga class (that actually happens about 50% of the time). I always have my day planned out the night before, so I can start my first task with very minimal thought (I’m not a morning person). At 10am it's coffee time.

I usually head to a cafe or co-working space for a change of scene and continue with the rest of my tasks for the day which could include anything from working with my manufacturer, blog writing, content creation, PR and influencer outreach, website updates, marketing strategy, coordinating a shoot, collaborations or the most glam job of all, packing orders in my little spare room. 

Phew! It's tiring just hearing you say all that! What is on the horizon for Vee over the next year?
This year is going to be all about perfecting our 3 base styles; Bikini, G-string and Boyleg and listening to our community to bring them more styles (a cheeky cut is in high demand) and more colours. We also want to up the ante on female health education.

And last question to round off this chat. If you could invite five people to dinner, anyone at all in the world, who would be at the table?
Tough question! Okay, I’m not a huge international celeb fan girl as they feel a touch unrelatable, therefore, I’d roll with some fellow Aussie business women:

  • Zoe Foster Blake – Because she’s a no brainer. 
  • Bree Johnson, Erika Geraerts & Jess Hatzis – Because they are my favourite local start-up and I really admire the brand that they have created
  • Gretta Van Riel–Because she’s a social media mastermind and I’d love to pick her brain.

What a dinner squad. It's safe to say Jonny and Vee go-together like breakfast in bed.

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