From Zero to Multibillion Dollar Brand, Pinsy Is Pioneering the Pretty Shapewear Revolution
Shapewear. It’s a word we have heard for decades. The words usually associated with shapewear are ugly, tight, and uncomfortable. Marketed to “make you look thinner” or to “hide those curves”, shapewear marketing usually targets plus-sized women. Many women find wearing shapewear embarrassing because of its association with being overweight and its ugly, uncomfortable nature. Pinsy is completely changing the game here. Instead of selling a way to hide “something bad” like curvy women, Pinsy and brand founder & CEO Ratchel Pinlac approaches shapewear with positivity and love towards all body types.
Lh interviewed Ratchel and learned all about her journey to designing the perfect shapewear and ultimately finding sensational business success. After trying many different prototypes and continually working towards something better, Pinsy Shapewear was born. Today, Ratchel Pinlac and her team are on a mission to combat the idea that women need to “hide their curves” while also making something beautiful for anyone to wear.
Discover the Power of Pinsy Shapewear & Meet Brand Founder & CEO Ratchel Pinlac
Love Happens: As our name and the tagline of our publisher KOKET denotes, at ‘Love Happens’, we are firm believers that you cannot achieve any level of success without love. When did your love affair with shapewear begin? How did that make you feel?
Ratchel Pinlac: This love affair developed from a feeling of hatred that eventually turned into love. When I was a young girl, I was body shamed quite a bit and turned to my mother’s shapewear drawer (which consisted of ugly panty girdles) to hide and flatten my stomach. This ate into my self-esteem, and I hated the way shapewear was marketed to women as a “solution”, let alone hated the way the garment itself made me feel.
Fast forward 15 years later, I found myself in my mid-20’s going back to revisiting shapewear as I browsed through available (and still unappealing) options in the market. With no luck finding something appealing and flattering, I eventually fell in love (and became obsessed) with the idea of building a shapewear brand girls actually loved to buy that made them feel beautiful instead of squished and enhanced their bodies instead of hiding them.
Lh: Tell us a little bit about your decision to start Pinsy.
Ratchel: In my mid-20s, I recall thinking, “Hm, there isn’t a shapewear company that makes girls go “ooh and ahh” over, in large part because shapewear just wasn’t beautiful or attractive, or women in general rarely had positive experiences when wearing shapewear. In addition, there wasn’t a “cool-girl” shapewear brand, for lack of a better term. There was a huge gap in the market for shapewear that was both beautiful and functional. I recall safety punning my shapewear shorts to my lace bralettes to make a one-piece bodysuit garment that shaped and supported me, all while feeling pretty enough to be seen. I thought, “why doesn’t this exist?!” From then on, I was on a mission to create the company, and the product offering I felt did not exist in the world, simply because if I did not, then who will?
Lh: Why is removing terms like “imperfections” and “solutions” so important?
Ratchel: This is so important because selling a shaping garment as a “solution: implies there is a problem with women’s bodies that needs to be changed. We have been conditioned to believe our bodies are never good enough. Removing these words from our marketing enables us to showcase that our shapewear is not designed to fix anything about a woman’s body. It is to embrace, enhance, and support a woman’s natural curves.
Lh: What empowers you most?
Ratchel: Knowing that women love to buy a product that enhances their lives and that we have the power and creativity to create amazing products to serve others.
Lh: Who are some of your biggest influences? How have these influences been a part of your company’s creation?
Ratchel: I look at companies like Away Luggage, also owned by a Filipina founder like myself, who started companies not because they invented something extremely new and novel. They started companies out of a need to improve the current market’s offering and to build loyalty around the brands. For Pinsy, I am very aware that shapewear in and of itself has existed prior to Pinsy. However, building companies from the bottom up based on the longing to improve a product and enable the public to perceive the product in a different light. It is such an inspiring and beautiful journey.
In addition, I worked at Amazon Corporate for 7 years, and I will say that seeing the relentless efforts of Jeff Bezos to push the company into what it is today is extremely influential. I saw first-hand what goes into running and growing an Ecommerce company, and the spirit of Amazon and its customer obsession has been very influential to the creation of Pinsy.
Lh: Nowadays, we talk about inclusivity and body positivity in social media. What do you think about this new surge of positivity?
Ratchel: It’s so incredible how far we have come, and I’m excited our children’s generation and future generations will be more open and accepting of their bodies due to how unapologetic our society is becoming when it comes to body image. We still have a long way to go, but it’s so beautiful to see women of all sizes embrace their bodies on social media. I’ve personally unfollowed the accounts where women promote an unrealistic body type and continue to follow and adore the women who post photos of themselves that are unedited.
Lh: When do you feel the most beautiful?
Ratchel: Honestly, I feel the most beautiful in a great outfit and some comfortable heels. How you feel in your clothes is so important!
Lh: You have said that it took 3 years and so many design alterations to make Pinsy what it is. How do you stay so motivated day to day?
Ratchel: Creating something that didn’t exist motivated me. With every iteration, I felt the product was getting better and better, and that’s what keeps me motivated. I also want to create the best shapewear garments in the industry and cannot stop until I personally would claim something as my go-to brand. If it does not exist, I want to bring it into the world. I also feel women deserve the best.
Lh: If you could say one thing to your younger self, what would it be?
Ratchel: You are BEAUTIFUL, and you are NOT FAT! I grew up being body shamed and turned to my mom’s shapewear drawer to flatten my stomach with her girdles. As a young girl, that really traumatized me. No young girl should feel this way, nor should they feel the need to hide their bodies I feel there is a place in this world for shapewear that makes you feel beautiful and to enhance your curves as opposed to feeling squished and embarrassed.
Lh: What is next for Pinsy? For you personally?
Ratchel Pinlac: I am on a mission to expand our product assortment in many categories of clothing. On a personal level, I’d love to settle down in California (just recently moved!) and further grow our team!
SHOP PINSY AT WEARPINSY.COM
Words by Alison Morrison
More to Love!