Eco-Undies For Your Inner Goddess
I grew up in a house where underwear mattered. I don’t know if it’s a Colombian thing or a just my mom thing, but in our house having pretty underwear was the law. The second the elastic started fraying, or the flower print started to fade it was time to go shopping.
My Mom’s philosophy was this: Wearing beautiful underwear makes you feel beautiful. Even if you’re wearing the grimiest work clothes, underneath everything you know you have something beautiful just for you.
As I grew up that idea grew from a fun excuse to buy new underwear to a life philosophy. It came to mean that it is possible to keep your inner strength and grace no matter how awful your circumstances. There were times in my life when anxiety had such a strong hold on me, that getting out of bed seemed impossible. On those dark days I'd force myself to put on the prettiest underwear I owned. That one simple act was a subtle reminder that I could and would love myself. For a brief moment after I slipped on that bit of lace I'd feel better. I would hoard those happy moments, stacking them together until finally I learned to experience joy again.
When I look outside myself though, I see a very different reality reflected. The idea of underwear falls into two categories:
1: We Take It For Granted
It’s always there, like a second skin doing its job without too much fuss. We never really think about it, until we’re on our last pair and have to make an emergency visit to the laundromat at ten o’clock at night. It's old and ratty like our attitude.
2: We Make It About Sex
When we do think about it, it’s in relation to how attractive it will make us to a partner. Would they find us sexier in black lace or white mesh? It’s all about them.
I think it’s time we take underwear back. It’s time we make it about us. Womens' bodies are not for consumption no matter what society tells us (#patriarchy). It’s time that our underwear makes us feel beautiful and powerful in the most challenging of situations.
I recently found an intimates brand that embodies this very idea. I'd like to introduce you to Madi Apparel. They carry a collection of intimates that are as empowering as they are beautiful. And let's get real here, what's more beautiful than an empowered woman? Empowering women in need is the whole reason the company was founded in the first place.
After learning a close family member was a victim of domestic violence, Madi Founder Haley did a little digging. It turned out underwear is the most needed and yet most under-donated item of clothing at domestic violence shelter and sexual assault clinics. The path to healing for surviors of this kind of violence is long and complicated, but you know one really easy way to feel better about life? Fresh clean underwear.
Everyone deserves clean underwear, but I believe these women deserve the opportunity to go one step further. Clean underwear is great, but pretty underwear is even better. While some may view pretty underwear as a frivolous expense for survivors of violence, I say it's a vital component of the healing process. Think about it. Underwear is our most intimate article of clothing. Being subjected to that kind of trauma violates a person at their most intimate level. For women in that situation wearing pretty underwear is a roar of defiance. By adorning that which was violated, by decorating their most private selves, these women embrace and reclaim their stolen bodies.
That’s why Madi Apparel donates a pair of new underwear for every pair sold. To date they’ve donated over 4,500 pairs in over eight different countries!
Check out the Impact and Empowerment tab on their website and you’ll be blown away by all the women who’ve been helped. From women who live in deportee camps to survivors of domestic violence these women are tough. I believe their inner strength and grace through such trying circumstances deserves to be celebrated.
Clean beautiful underwear has the power to change my day. Let's help change theirs.
Photos: Anais Ganouna
Underwear: Madi Apparel
Boots: Fortress of Inca