Black-Owned Period Panty Company, Ruby Love, Secures $15 Million Investment - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise magazine Fall 2019 issue

Ruby Love, an e-commerce apparel company that specializes in period panties and swimwear, secured $15 million in funding from The Craftory, a $300 million global investment firm. According to a press release published Tuesday, there’s an initial Series A funding of $8 million. In turn, The Craftory will acquire an undisclosed stake in the Femtech company.

Formerly known as PantyProp, Ruby Love has sold $10 million worth of products since its conception in 2015. Its product line includes leak-proof undergarments, activewear, bathing suits, loungewear, and boxer briefs. Ruby Love Founder and CEO Crystal Etienne says the hefty investment will be used to scale her company. “I plan to continue investing in the brand’s expansion, product development, and brand-related campaigns,” she told BLACK ENTERPRISE in an email. She added, “With the assistance of The Craftory, I will be able to tweak and enhance Ruby Love, offering the very best.”

Crystal Etienne

Crystal Etienne, founder and CEO of Ruby Love

Etienne launched the online shop after becoming frustrated with the lack of feminine hygiene product options on the market and identifying a need for efficient modern-day period apparel. “This venture was not something motivated by profit but necessity and comfort,” she tells BE. “I knew my preference was to wear a form of protection for my period without the insertion of a foreign object and my pad sticking out, yet I also wanted to feel as if I weren’t wearing anything. I knew there had to be a way to accomplish protection, comfort, and discretion,” she said, adding, “I did not want people to settle for products that were designed decades ago or stress over the embarrassment of leaks and stained clothes.”

With just $25,000, the wife and mother of two designed patented technology to offer women protection from leaks without the use of a tampon or sanitary pad and tested hundreds of prototypes. “My journey began in the basement of my home, searching for the best functional fabrics, most absorbent materials, and a design that was comparable to your favorite brand of undergarments,” says Etienne. “I then developed the smart and intuitive technology that offers a built-in absorbent organic cotton liner, which is featured in each apparel product we provide. It is perfectly angled to collect your flow, offering maximum absorption and protection against leaks and stains, peace of mind, and complete discretion.”

period apparel

(Courtesy of Ruby Love)

Once on the market. Etienne single-handedly sourced, packed, and shipped orders for months. The company, however, generated a whopping $300,000 in sales following its first year, which she says is due to overwhelming support, not gimmick advertising. “I was able to gain the support of thousands of women, who wanted the same product I envisioned prior to creating Ruby Love.”

Today, Ruby Love is recognized as a pioneer in the period apparel industry and a leader within the teen feminine care. The company also has a strong focus on providing essential products for teen girls. “Not only do we provide products, but we also include educational materials that challenge common misconceptions and equip teens and women with the tools to embrace their periods.”