Apparel companies are tackling the problem of menopause by using a variety of high-tech fabrics that have cooling properties. And most of those companies are headed up by women.
More than half of all women experience hot flashes or night sweats that can last for four to five years, with some experiencing the problem for between seven and 10 years. In addition to menopause, women who suffer with thyroid problems or go through chemotherapy also suffer from rapid changes in body temperatures.
Apparel brands dominated by men don’t appear as keen to go after the market. Some activewear brands that feature cooling technology know their product is great for this group, but admit they aren’t as comfortable talking about the connection.
Sleepwear brand Lusomé was founded in 2012 by Lara Little after her sister battled cancer and couldn’t find sleepwear to address her needs. The sleepwear uses a proprietary, high-performance fabric called xirotex that pulls perspiration away from the body 10 times more effectively than other moisture wicking competition. While the product was inspired by the side effects of chemo, those with menopause night sweats have become an important customer base.
The luxury sleepwear is designed with the idea that the people needing this type of product deserve to be pampered with beautiful sleepwear that has a premium fabric. Lusomé is carried at more than 100 retailers in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico and online as well.
Cool-jams Inc. is another company that is located in San Diego that caters to the menopause crowd. Its products use a fabric comprised of a moisture-wicking fiber that has advanced evaporation and thermo-regulation properties. The company said that tests show its product wicks and dries three to four times faster than cotton or poly-cotton.
The product was founded by Anita Mahaffey in 2006. She was both a cancer survivor and a hot flash victim. Cool-jams also makes bedding products and with each purchase a donation is made to a variety of charities including several cancer-related organizations.
CoolCore Technology is an example of a company that has the cooling ability, but markets itself to the activewear community. While its core customer is women, CoolCore is focusing on its yoga business, specifically apparel and towels.
“It comes up in conversations wherever we are,” said David Ludd, vice president of global marketing, when asked about the appeal of the product for women in menopause. “It’s something we’re looking into.” He thinks it fits best under the health and wellness umbrella and that they are trying to create a story around that.
Ludd believes that CoolCore’s chemical-free technology is appealing to cancer patients and menopausal women alike. Its fabric uses three different yarns to wick, pull moisture away and regulate evaporation. After four years of testing, the product was determined to have a 30 percent lower surface temperature than its leading competitor with cooling technology.
It may be a topic unfamiliar to men, but women have seized the opportunity to create a product they need and want.