I know everyone worried when both Facebook and Instagram introduced ads into feeds. But man, are they ever effective. Dare I say that at some points, I’ve even discovered really cool companies because of them? Case in point: most of the small brands I’m chatting about today were all companies I found via ads in either platform. It’s no secret that the retail and e-comm landscape has changed a lot over the last few years (be honest: how often do you shop online vs. going into a store?), and I think new upstart brands are such an integral (and awesome!) part of that. Whether it’s companies like Everlane, M. Gemi, or Cuyana, some of my favorite, most beloved purchases are not from the mall store staples. What about you? Do you find yourself shopping more from smaller, start-up type brands these days?
Anyhoo, I always love discovering cool new companies, and thought I’d share the above with you. A couple of these are definitely a bit more established, but were new to me, so I figured I’d pass ’em along in case you’d been living under a rock with me ;)
Here’s a bit more about each of these finds:
I’ve heard about Care/Of for a while now, but hadn’t really investigated until their ads started popping up in my Insta feed. The gist is that it’s a personalized daily vitamin service. You take a short quiz that talks about your health goals and current lifestyle, and Care/Of creates a customized recommendation for vitamins and supplements you can consider. Then, if you’re up for it, they’ll package said vitamins and send to you in small little daily packs! It’s actually a great idea if you’re interested in taking supplements but aren’t quite sure where to start (and especially if you’re interested in eastern or ayurvedic medicine, but don’t have access to a provider). The only thing that bums me out about the service is the packaging waste from opening up a pill pack everyday. I’m so used to opening up my jars of vitamins and what not at home that it seems crazy to throw away packaging on the daily.
While I have my own supplement thing going on over here (I’m still taking all the ones I talked about in this post), Care/Of did mention a couple supplements I wasn’t familiar with and sounded like they could be great matches for some of my concerns. You might be interested in taking their quiz, just to see what they recommend for you!
I’ll be the first to admit, I haven’t traditionally spent that much time or money when it comes to sleepwear. A pair of undies or soft cotton shorts and an old soft tee seemed just fine for me. So I initially balked when I saw the prices on Lunya’s site. $68 for a sleep tee seemed nuts! Then I started reading more about why they created this line, and how much work has gone into designing the pieces to ensure they don’t disturb you while you rest.
The truth is, like founder Ashley Merrill, I’ve totally had those moments where I was wearing a 10 year old t-shirt to bed, looked at myself in the mirror and been like, “Ugh, not cute.” Recently, I’ve also noticed myself waking up more at night — not always because of what I’m wearing, though in some cases, it’s definitely the culprit (nothing worse than a pair of sleep shorts that keep riding up or a camisole strap that’s been twisted tightly around your shoulder). Upgrading my sleepwear has been one of those things I’ve been meaning to do, so Lunya might just be giving me the kick in the pants (or nightie?) needed to ensure I’m sleeping better at night. You can see their full collection of products here.
There have been a number of upstart lingerie companies in recent years, and to be honest, I hadn’t found one I really loved. Underwear that wasn’t comfortable, bras that didn’t fit me right (even after they were “guaranteed” to do so). I’d opted to stick with my favorites, please and thank you. I’m a pretty big devotee to Natori Feathers bras, but every now and again, it’s nice to have a simple, comfortable bralette to wear around the house — and which also doesn’t break the bank. I recently came across the company Lively, and am totally intrigued by some of their more casual bra designs, especially because the prices are great — $35 for cute bralettes, wireless bras, and even a t-shirt bra. Not a bad price point to give ’em a try, eh? The brand also recently launched swimwear, so if you’re in the market (you know, it being summer and all), check it out here.
I found the Light L16 camera in a round up of start up lists, maybe earlier this year or late last? It’s a pretty interesting concept — a camera that’s about the size of an iPhone that can take true DSLR quality photos. The camera packs 52 megapixels of power, all in a body that’s only 3 inches wide and weighs less than a pound. Why is it called L16? Because this camera has sixteen lenses on its front, which makes it a multi-aperture camera. You can edit depth of field settings after images are taken, and even for a camera so small, it performs well in low light conditions (check out the sliders on this page that show more about its capabilities). According to press, the camera is retailing for $1600. It’s a pretty penny, but still less than other small DSLRs — and this one is easily the smallest I have seen. Light was taking orders on these and will ship the first batch later this summer; if you want to find out more about placing an order for the next batch, sign up here. There are also lots of reviews for the device, found here!
I discovered Floyd when artist Heather Day was talking about them in her Instastories. Their concept is TOTALLY cool. Floyd makes simple modular furniture designs, many of which can be customized with surfaces you provide. For example, their Floyd Utility Set is essentially a simple leg and strap kit, and you provide a wood top (or any other surface, I guess). Presto, a brand new dining table custom sized for your space. Or a desk. Or a console. Really, any work space you want! They make similar legs for coffee tables, too. But what they’re really known for is the Floyd bed, an easy to assemble platform bed that’s extremely affordable (like, under $600 for a queen size). I love the possibilities with all their furniture!
Floyd also sells some simple home accessories, like shelving and workspace pieces that are thoughtfully designed and look cool too. Definitely for a modern aesthetic, but their company is a concept that I think is super unique.
Warp + Weft
Launched just this past May, Warp + Weft popped up in my Instagram feed, and it was an immediate click through. Premium denim (with lots of options for petites), and under $100? Yes, please! Founded by the former Creative Director at high end denim brand DL 1961, Warp + Weft markets “perfect fitting jeans” for everyone — whether you’re average height, petite, curvy, whatever. All their jeans are $98, and sizes are available from 0-24. Interestingly, the brand doesn’t buy their denim fabric, instead choosing to weave it themselves (this is also what helps make the jeans more affordable for customers). You can check out their full collection of styles here. The brand also recently got some press on Who What Wear and Vogue, if you’re interested!
Aside: I’ve noticed the direct-to-consumer luxury denim thing has gained some traction — a similar company is Mott + Bow (jeans range in price from $96-$128), and I believe Everlane is launching a denim line later this year too. Have you tried any of these new denim brands?
Solid + Striped
Ok, so Solid + Striped is one of those companies that I have seen at multiple retailers, but never knew about the brand behind the products. One of their ads popped up in my Instagram feed recently, and I was so into the photograph that I clicked through. Then, their website had me hooked! Solid + Striped makes premium, classic, simple-yet-modern swimwear. Their pieces are pricey, but also super cute and unique. Their one pieces are my particular favorite — I don’t recall seeing such a broad line of styles that were basic (lots of solids and, you guessed it — stripes), but with interesting cuts that range from more modest to very sexy. Like, I need a beach vacation on the horizon so I have an excuse to get this navy and white striped suit. How do I know I’ve been out of the loop on this one? Solid + Striped sells at lots of major retailers (including Anthropologie, Shopobop, Net-a-Porter, Barney’s, and Free People) so check ’em out if you happen to be shopping online or (gasp!) in one of those stores.
Those are some of the new-to-me brands I’ve been crushing on lately. Have you shopped at any of these? What did you think? Are there any other new style/lifestyle start-ups you’ve tried that I should know about? Tell us about them below!