We are responsible
All the choices we make stem from an ambition to do better and take responsibility. It lies deep in the product we make, in our DNA, but also in the way we do business.
Our core is to offer you a comfortable alternative to disposable menstrual products. We would like to support you in making a better choice for you - and for the environment.
But we also want to help change the whole feeling around menstruation, from stigma to success.
We are continuously both curious and hungry to improve, and our product has been created together with you, and we will continue.
That's how it's been from the very beginning! And even if some options are not realistic for a startup, we dare say it out loud, transparency is key. "This is where we are and this is where we want to go". We always strive for the balance between being able to sleep well at night and challenging ourselves in relation to making the right decisions.
And here we are today:
Our first priority was to find a supplier with a code of ethics we could support.
Our supplier is GOTS certified. Certifications are typically complex in size and, by the way, private - it's not something you just get, but something you apply for, go through processes to be able to obtain and ultimately pay for.
The fact that our supplier is certified for GOTS guarantees us an independent certification of the entire supply chain. When a supplier is certified, it means that there is a regulated minimum wage, no discrimination, a safe and hygienic working environment, decent and regulated working hours, the right to collective bargaining and so on.
As a Dane, it might sound like a matter of course. It's just not in the whole world, not in production at all.
From the start, our ambition was to have a certified production, product and/or company.
Our first ambition was to make the first GOTS-certified menstrual panty. However, menstrual panties cannot currently be GOTS certified, as the materials included are not accepted. The synthetic fibers can never be included in a product that is GOTS certified - and the briefs require this for their function, a bit like sportswear. It is complex to understand - even for us who dive deep into this.
So GOTS-certified menstrual panties are not an option right now - maybe in the long term as new materials are developed. The cotton we use is certified organic.
On the other hand, we have spent a large part of 2023 preparing ourselves to apply to become BCorp certified.
B-Corporation is a global organization that sets requirements not only for the product but 360 degrees around the company, from bank selection to supplier to product.
We hope to be able to send our application in Q1 of 2024.
We have chosen to work primarily with textiles such as organic cotton, polyamide, elastane and polyester.
We are not particularly proud of the synthetic textiles – we know that they pose a challenge for the environment. But making technical underwear is in many ways similar to making sportswear.
You must use textiles that minimize odor, dry quickly and transport moisture away from the body. Synthetic textiles are made for these purposes. And they are really durable!
The synthetic materials have both pluses and minuses.
A challenge: Every time you wash your synthetic clothing, it releases tiny particles of plastic into the waste water.
So that's why we've teamed up with the good people behind Guppy Friend. We sell their small laundry bag that you can use for your underwear so that it does not discharge waste into the waste water when you wash it.
Some of the profits from the Guppy Friend laundry bags go to the company's own non-profit organization STOP! Micro Waste, which among other things teaches school children and other groups how to avoid plastic and how to initiate local initiatives to reduce, eliminate and recycle single-use plastics.
We would like to switch to recycled materials, but we do not yet have a size to be able to handle that. But it is also blinding to think that recycled polyester is just the solution. It is often produced from plastic bottles, and this means that we take a material that could have become a new plastic bottle and "degrade" it into a thin polyester thread, which in all likelihood will not be recycled after use.
It's really not easy - not even for us. But we use e.g. Sourcing House to advise us on best practice.
All menstruating women should be free to choose exactly the menstrual product that works for them, regardless of whether it is menstrual cups, pads or menstrual panties.
That is why we have chosen to offer sizes from XS-XXXL - because we mean it when we say ALL. Full stop (- but if we don't have your size, just write to us, we'd like to expand if the need is there - however, we don't want to produce sizes that don't sell, because it's not sustainable).
Our wonderful world consists of millions of colors, shades, shapes and sizes. In nature and between people, and we believe that we should be introduced to all of them.
Therefore, you will see our underwear on different bodies.
We would also like to encourage you to take part in the community - use #friendofflow and tag us @flowintimates_ on social media.
Size isn't the most important thing, is it?
It can be difficult to always be the smallest in an industry where it is often about volume and speed.
So that's why we smaller companies have to get together! Flow continuously makes small collaborations with other creative brands. Some collaborations will be more permanent, while others will be "here and now", so if you want to support them, hurry.