Dear lovely Y.O.U family,
This is officially our last blog post of 2023 - what a year it has been! As we approach the finish line, we once again find ourselves filled with gratitude and joy for the unwavering support you have all shown us this year- our community is at the heart of everything we do at Y.O.U, and it enables us to continue supporting women and girls around the world, so a massive THANK YOU to each and every one of you!
We have also been taking the time to reflect on this past year - some of the lessons we have learnt, the things we are most proud of ... and everything in between. Whilst you can look forward to our full analysis in our Impact Report in the new year, we thought we would share a brief look back at this year with you all.
Milestones we celebrated in 2023:
We officially celebrated two years in the Covered Market!
Having first moved into Oxford's historic Covered Market as a temporary popup shop in November 2021, we moved to our new more central unit in August 2022 and this year we celebrated our second year of having a physical retail space. It's been a huge learning opportunity for us as we've navigated how to best make use of the space and showcase some of the work we're trying to do to challenge issues within the fashion industry, as well as show off our sustainable undies! This is something that we have been thinking about a lot and will play an important role in our impact reporting next year.. so stay tuned!
We also celebrated two years of being B Corp certified!
As we're sure you are all aware, being part of the B Corp community and a global movement that is trying to prove that business can be a force for good is something that we are very honoured to be involved with. On top of this, being one of the top-scoring UK B Corp's as well as the top fashion B Corp in the world, despite being such as small team, is something we are immensely proud of. As we look forward to our first recertification next year, we want to keep punching well above our weight in terms of social and environmental impact and continually raise the bar for sustainability in the fashion sector and beyond. We have big, big plans, so watch this space!
We have launched 3 new products this year!
As we continue to grow as a business, we always make sure to keep focused on our customers and what you want from us. This year, you told us that you loved our bikinis but would sometimes like an option for a bit more coverage, whilst maintaining the style and comfort of the original shape. Therefore, by popular demand, we introduced our mid-rise bikini bikini across all the colours and patterns that you love from the rest of our ranges. Similarly, we introduced our mid-length boxers for men (or whoever wants to wear them!) as hopefully the perfect length. Finally, and potentially most excitingly - we introduced our first major 'non-underwear' products... our pyjamas! We have been delighted by how popular these have been, our customers clearly value comfort, style and sustainability (and large pockets!) as much as we do! These mark the first of many non-underwear products that are in the works as we speak ... keep your eyes peeled ;)
Our 2023 in numbers:
As you know, we are much more than an underwear shop, and we operate as a recycling and donations hub for new and used underwear, socks and tights- helping them get to where they are needed most to support women and girls. This year we have...
- Collected over 200kg of underwear, socks and tights for recycling and saved them from landfill!
- Donated 1000s of pairs of underwear to those in need.
- Donated hundreds of pounds to the breast cancer charity Future Dreams.
- Started selling our underwear in two retailers (Filling Good, Maidenhead and Eighteen Rabbit, Hay on Wye).
Other exciting things that happened this year...
- We visited the amazing charity we support, Smalls for All - the photo above is of Sarah and Maria in their warehouse in Livingston, Scotland.
- We visited our factory in India to see Y.O.U underwear being made in real life. You can read the report from our trip here.
- The Covered Market introduced late opening hours... so we decided to take full advantage of the extra time and start hosting more events. Some of the highlights were the mending workshop and the menopause workshop.
- We have been collaborating with some amazing local groups for our photoshoots including the fabulous Cream Tease Burlesque troupe and Oxford University Hockey club for a photoshoot in support of Movember
We hope that you have enjoyed coming on this journey with us as much as we have loved and appreciated you all being here! We wish you and your loved ones all the best for this festive period - we hope it's filled with love, joy, and of course - sustainability. We can't wait for the year ahead and to keep supporting women and girls around the world, changing the fashion industry for the better, and providing you with the stylish, comfortable and ethical underwear that you love.
Much festive love,
Sarah and the Y.O.U Underwear team x