Sneha Prabeen Got So Frustrated With The Judgemental Stares She Got For Bra Straps, She Made A Whole Business Out Of It
I have picked up a few important lessons in the 24 years of existence. From beating the back of a ketchup bottle to get to open it, to slowing down music in a car to park better, to getting a tattoo inked on body to instantly become a topic discussion in my neighborhood aunties’ next kitty party, I am in the know of how some topics just make everyone uncomfortable. And no, the best way to do it is not by blaring Honey Singh songs from off of your speakers at 12 in the night, though we all know that would work, but by just including a bra strap into the mix and let it do all the talking.
Whether it’s trying to soak up some sun and hopefully not lose colour in the process while it hangs on your balcony, to when the strap slides off your shoulder to play peek a boo with out ever-judgmental society, the bra is talked about in hushed tones pretty much all the time. From making your padosan aunties go red with embarrassment for you irate to strangers on the street pointing it out to you as though doing you a social service, to your own mother repeating the fact that you must not let it show, it’s almost as if bras are radioactive.
God forbid people see a lacy pink or a plain black or an innocent white strap resting on our shoulders to offer support to our breasts, it becomes a matter of morality, honour and decency for the woman. And while for the better part of growing up, we let such stereotypes, such irrational fears and stigmas around bras guide us into carefully and neatly tucking them away from the human eye. But we are going to have none of it anymore. And by the looks of it, seems like I am not alone, for a young woman entrepreneur who has recently started her own business to make beaded bra straps, is riding along a similar thought.
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Sneha Prabeen, deeply frustrated of hearing dismissive ‘tch tch tch‘s from bored aunties when they spotted her strap showing, to having to change clothes when all attempts to hide the bra failed, she decided to nip the problem in the very bud, by coming up with a creative, sassy and the most millennial solution to every girl’s problem.
Inventing the beaded bra strap, that solves the problem of the uncomfortable plastic straps that give us bruises and keeps women from having to hide them out of societal shame, Sneha started Yuvanta Beadworks in her hometown Calicut, Kerala back in July, 2014. What started as an initiative to work around beaded jewellery soon transformed into something bigger. She said, “I was really happy doing what I was doing, but I knew that I wasn’t bringing something new to the market,” and that is how she ended up stumbling upon this idea of beaded bra straps.
After months of trial error, Sneha finally created her first prototype and In December 2014, at the Sante’s Christmas edition, Sneha introduced the beaded bra strap first’s edition, that sold out the very first day. She shared, “It wasn’t just a product but people had an emotional connection with the product,” and we know exactly where that was coming from.
From starting initiatives like “Show your straps” to getting women to be comfortable with a bra, to urging women to join the campaign from all over the world – US, Poland, the UAE, and India, Sneha meant to open a larger dialogue that addressed the shame that was associated with our bra straps. Busting the taboos, breaking down the stigmas, and replacing the disconcerting nods with affirmative views, her entire business was aimed at earning acceptance for something as simple as a bra strap.
Perhaps, it is time we keep our irrational discomfort at a bay from other’s and don’t project our own lack of open mindedness on women. Because with women like her, we aren’t going down without trying to bring about a change in the world!