Stylist to the stars, Karla Welch has dressed the most elite stars across the entertainment industry from Gal Gadot to America Ferrera, Vanessa Kirby and beyond. Her work has been immortalized in the likes of Vogue and red carpet snapshots, but perhaps her greatest impact has been an entirely different endeavor. One that started with being a mom trying to make life better for their kid.
Co-founded by Welch in 2020, The Period Company offers period underwear that really works. It’s fueled by a mission to prioritize and normalize menstrual health by creating accessible, affordable and sustainable products and is transparent about the materials used so that individuals can make an informed choice about the product that best suits them. True to its promise, The Period Company sells its products online, but you can also find them in both Urban Outfitters and Walmart.
Read below from Welch to learn more about The Period Company, how they are helping to end period poverty and more.
The inception of The Period Company started when your own kid started their period while still in elementary school. How did your mind shift from “How can my kid be having a nightmare period?” to I can make a solution?
I think as a parent, you’re trying to make life easier for your kid, especially at the period age. There are so many things going on emotionally, and for me, I wanted to reduce the stress. I also was thinking about my own period story and how it wasn’t good and how society has just been terrible about periods. So I said, “Let’s make a start here on a new story.”
Unlike other menstrual underwear companies, The Period Company has a chief medical officer, Dr. Sade Imeokparia. When did you know this role was needed for your businesses and how has their expertise been essential to the success of The Period Company?
We had an adviser suggest that we hold ourselves to the same standards as products that were out there, meaning traditional pads and tampons. We understood that this is a behavior change for most of us, we wanted to be sure we had science to back us up and to let people know, “Hey, this is actually the safest way to period.” The shocking thing is, tampons and pads for decades didn’t have to regulate or even say what was in them, so we don’t behave like we’re the better way.
You have worked with the likes of Tracee Ellis Ross, Lorde and Olivia Wilde. How has your career as a celebrity stylist benefitted you as an entrepreneur and helming The Period Company?
I’m so grateful to have built almost 20 years of trust and relationships with my clients who have supported and amplified the brand in really such huge ways.
You’re also a mom. How has being a mother fueled your passion for The Period Company?
A mom and a person with a period. I think it’s just that I wanted to make a product that all parents could afford and give to their kids and I want to be part of building a world that for the first time deeply respects and understands what a period is.
In just three years, The Period Company has achieved plenty of success. What are you most proud of about it?
That we’ve given close to a million pairs away globally to people who literally have no access to period products. Period poverty can be eradicated and we want to lead with impact on making that a reality.
What is some of your favorite feedback you’ve heard from consumers?
That we’ve changed their relationship to their period.
Photography by: Courtesy of The Period Company