Friday, April 12, 2024

Minority business highlight: Rel Eve co.

Rel Eve Co. (pronounced “re-leeve”) wants to set a new standard for how Millennial and Gen-Z women shop for menstrual care by selling period products that are all-natural and non-toxic.  

The products are sourced from top U.S. companies and small businesses. The focus is on highlighting businesses owned by Black and/or women entrepreneurs.  

The Millennial-founded company is making it easier to find clean, sustainable period care in America.  

RELATED: Minority Business Highlight: Tea’s Me Cafe

“When you go to a drug store or a local Target to pick up a box of pads, there aren’t a lot of options to choose from. They usually have the same five to ten brands but even then, those are not organic or non-toxic,” said Jasmine Bennett, the founder. 

Stats and data

According to the U.S. Environmental Protective Agency, long-term exposure to high levels of toxic contaminants called dioxins can cause cancers, reproductive and developmental issues and other health problems.  

Dioxins can form when bleach is used on pulp and paper products that go into pads and tampons. Most people are not exposed to high enough levels to cause health problems.  

However, these traces can accumulate. The average woman uses approximately 11,000 tampons in her lifetime. So, there is an increased chance that the chemical may actually be absorbed into their bodies according to Tampon Tribe

The World Health Organization said dioxins are highly toxic. They can cause reproductive and developmental problems, damage the immune system, interfere with hormones and also cause cancer.  

After switching to a more holistic lifestyle to heal her body from debilitating cramps, Jasmine Bennett found period products that lowered her premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms. They gave her the relief she wanted.  

Bennett soon discovered there was not a central location where she could order all of her products.  

“I used to be on a hormonal roller coaster every month until I changed products. There’s Amazon and Target, but there’s only a certain number of products you can get even online. Every month I was tired of trying to search and I said there has to be a better way,” said Bennett. 

That’s on period

A lot of the products that she used were from Honey Pot Co., Mixhers and Top Organic.  

“But, like certain off brand products and products on Etsy that I was using, aren’t on Amazon. There’s this one company that sells pads infused with CBD,” said Bennett.  

She looked online for any store that offered all of the non-toxic products that she used, but she couldn’t find it. So she decided to create it. 

She won a $20,000 pitch competition with Elevate Ventures, a venture development organization based in Indianapolis that focuses on supporting entrepreneur growth for the state. 

“I was really taken aback by the fact that the number of non-toxic products available in the U.S. weren’t available in local communities. Especially, urban communities,” said Bennett. 

She launched her business in March 2022.  

She offers pads, tampons, pain patches, holistic pain management, cramp relief oils, yoni soaps, washes, menstrual cups, supplements for balancing hormones, PMS bath bombs, period underwear and menstrual relief shower steamers that help relieve period anxiety.  

Bennett is a Christian and named her business Rel Eve Co. because of Eve in the Bible.  

“After she ate from the tree, she had to have horrible pain that comes with menstruating before childbirth. So, I said there has to be a better way to relieve the pain and I said ‘Oh! Rel Eve’ when you think of relief and I thought it was cool,” said Bennett. 

She wants to scale her business to be accessible across the country with physical locations in urban areas especially.  

Her next steps are to open up a warehouse in Indiana or Illinois. She is planning on hosting pop up shops throughout the Midwest.  

“I feel like women need a store they can shop at that celebrates and honors what our bodies can do,” said Bennett. “Menstruation is a beautiful cycle and our periods should be a time that we treat our bodies with the utmost care.” 

Do you have a minority-owned business? Register it with our directory HERE.

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