Sports have always shaped the life of Red Daisy founder, Phylise Sands, as she pursued her personal best with the many sports including skiing, tennis, horseback riding, and running. While leading this active lifestyle, Phylise decided she would never make any compromises or slow down, which is the philosophy that started Red Daisy. Phylise is a wife and a mother to three beautiful children, she is also a designer, architect, and athlete. Phylise manages her active lifestyle and she wears Red Daisy to do it!
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
I was motivated to start Red Daisy when my sister, Jackie, was diagnosed with breast cancer. I was always tailoring my sports bras and I was looking to find a way to support women like Jackie. Creating a company that engineers supportive sports bras while paying honor to my sister and giving back to an amazing cause, the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, felt like it was meant to be.
Tell us about your business.
Red Daisy is an activewear brand built to be sexy and supportive. As a brand, we are on a mission to redefine the sports bra market with glamour and good will. Red Daisy was inspired by my mission to fight against breast cancer and raise awareness about the importance of early prevention and living an active lifestyle.
Red Daisy activewear consists of luxury sports bras and matching coordinates, all designed by the top bra engineers in the industry and myself. As a runner, I knew that there was a demand for sleek, supportive sports bras that functioned like a bra, but did not look like one – this is what drove my passion behind my company.
Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?
We are so excited to announce that Red Daisy launched a new line this Fall! We have our Daisy Denim Collection and our All Star Collection.
We are excited about all of the accomplishments we have had as a brand. As part of our mission, Red Daisy was accepted to be a BCRF Survivor’s Circle Partner, which is a huge honor and privilege for us; as a business, we are on a mission to support those fighting against the disease and researchers who are fighting to end it.
Additionally, Red Daisy was fortunate to be highlighted in many press articles, including Women’s Wear Daily, Shape, Self, and More Magazine, in which I received a full article about how I handled starting a company while dealing with my sister’s diagnosis.
Where is your business based?
Red Daisy is based in New York City, and we are proud to share that all of our products are produced in New York City as well.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
In order to get Red Daisy up and running, I did exactly that! I got up, went running, and tried out different bras! This was what I considered the research phase of starting my business. I would try bras, alter them with my tailor, and figure out what I liked and I did not like. It was crucial to get this experience in order to provide the best supportive product for my customers. After that, there was a whirlwind of finding engineers, materials, and a factory that could make my dream products.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
In the beginning, we received a lot of exposure from press, which we were fortunate to have. We also raised awareness by getting involved in events and talking to women who had been impacted by breast cancer, either with their own diagnoses or with someone close to them. We also now connect to many people through social media as we love hearing people’s stories.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
My biggest challenge has been making sure my product is perfect for my customer. When creating a company, your customers expect a certain product; I want to make sure that my products are exactly what my customers expect and I never want to settle for anything less than that.
How did you overcome these challenges?
With a lot of hard work and tester (support) bras.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
I am motivated by the idea that I am doing this for my sister. Unfortunately, she had passed away, but I am continuing to work on Red Daisy in her honor. I know that it can be frustrating when business may not go as planned, however, I continue to think about how fortunate I am to have my health and my family, and that idea keeps me motivated.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
We like to call ourselves the brand that combines glamour and goodwill. We give back to a cause that is meaningful to us and we connect with other like-minded individuals. I also created the most stunning activewear, specifically the bras, that are designed to be supportive and comfortable, meanwhile many other companies overlook the sports bra because it is something hidden underneath the rest of an outfit. Sports bras are important as they can provide comfort to a woman who may be uncomfortable from issues like back pain or neck pain. We’re there to support women in any way they need.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
All it takes is one… one customer, one store, one individual to build your brand or to connect with.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
I would say that even when business can be challenging or even scary – to continue to persevere and work through those difficulties. Somebody wants what you have got to show them!
What are your favorite business tools/resources and why?
My family – my husband and children each have their own skillsets that help with building my brand. Whether it is with planning or simple Excel skills, my family has my back.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
Recently I read, “These Millennials Spend Their Days on the Beach and Still Make Money.” It was an interesting read because it showed the new way people can travel, be entrepreneurial, and still be successful.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
I am interested in learning more about social media marketing. It is a huge field and it is growing rapidly. SMM is great because it allows brands to connect with people from all over the world.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
My goals for the next few months is launching my new line for Red Daisy and continue to build my brand through connecting with people through the breast cancer community.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.