Trace: Revolutionizing Period Care from the Ground Up
Trace is changing the game in period care. Truly.
Trace is only a small team of 3 people, but they are dreamers, doers, and groundbreakers…and they are making HUGE changes in the industry.
It’s been over 30 years since a new material was introduced for tampon use–and it’s about time that a truly climate-friendly option came onto the scene. Not to mention, the huge need to restore autonomy in decision-making for what goes into your body! Full ingredient disclosure! All-natural! No glyphosate! Unbleached! You deserve to know exactly what is in your tampon and where it came from. No one in the industry could tell you for certain the environmental benefit of their period care or the ingredient profile, because no one could actually trace their tampon all the way back to the farm the fibers were grown on.
Concept: Tampons that are good for the planet + you
Let’s rewind and see where this wildly inventive idea even came from.
Founder and women’s health nurse practitioner Claire Crunk was seeing patients in her clinic that had questions she just couldn’t answer.
“Where is this rash coming from?”
“Could my period products be causing my fibroids?”
“What is the best period care for the environment and for me?”
Even as a skilled clinician, Crunk couldn’t answer these questions, because the outdated, opaque period care industry didn’t provide any information on what was actually in their products. Prior to 2022, period care companies didn’t have to disclose any ingredients in their products. Even now with some new state laws, the regulations surrounding disclosure are blurry and difficult to interpret. Not only that, but she found that many brands claiming to offer “eco-friendly” pads and tampons still had plastic in their tampons, and bioplastic applicators still weren’t actually biodegradable. So…how were these tampons actually better for women and the planet?
Research: What tampon fiber is best for women and the planet?
Inspired to change the whole industry, Crunk left her job as a nurse practitioner to voyage into entrepreneurship. She found her footing as someone who likes to solve complex problems and keeps people and the land at the heart of everything she does. She discovered hemp, a natural bast fiber that has been used for thousands of years for everything from cloth to paper (no CBD or THC, just beautiful fibers, like linen). She learned that hemp sequesters more carbon than mature forest, and that it restores soil health naturally. It was love at first sight. Crunk grew her own test plot, and dove head-first into figuring out how this fiber could be used in menstrual care.
Invention: the best tampons in the world
Crunk joined with absorbent hygiene engineer extraordinaire, Olaf Isele, to invent the world’s first hemp fiber tampon. Isele left corporate hygiene in pursuit of more natural fibers and became a leading expert in hemp/bast fibers for absorbency. Crunk and Isele decided a blend of hemp and cotton was best, but any old organic cotton simply wouldn’t do. Trace would take the industry beyond organic cotton tampons.
The team at Trace partnered with the California Climate and Cotton Coalition to help farmers transition their traditional cotton crops to regeneratively stewarded cotton. Using principles of organic farming (no glyphosate, no-till, natural herbicides, etc) regenerative farming adds on practices that actively heal the soil, such as cover crops and animal integration. Truly, the hemp and cotton blend that Isele and Crunk chose is the best of the best for the earth. And it sticks to the all-natural standards for humans that Crunk initially set out to create.
Production: hemp tampons with transparent origins from Trace
Trace is the only hygiene brand that can trace these fibers all the way back to the exact plot of land they were grown on, and has sovereignty over working directly with the farmers to ensure their land is healthy and the crops grown on them meet the health standards we are all looking for in products that go into our bodies. It’s a match made in heaven. And it’s taken YEARS of hard work to build such a trust-based supply chain. Now it’s finally time to bring this tampon to the masses! As of January 2023, Trace has its first commercial run of tampons made for you! And we couldn’t be happier. They are a beautiful testament to the land and the beauty that shines through when we let the earth do what it does best–simply be. Trace is bringing you a truly transformative period care experience.
Trace: regenerative period products developed by holistic medical professionals
The last piece of the puzzle is how to get this message out to you…and Dr. Meg Galaske is the team member doing that! Dr. Galaske is a holistic medical doctor and energy healer that marries the innovation and scientific approach of Western medicine with the deep knowledge of traditional, indigenous, and more ancient approaches to land and body healing. She loves integrating her medical knowledge and what people with periods go through with how we can best heal self, kin, and earth. Her own personal experience having PCOS, a reproductive endocrine disorder, gives her special insight into the unique differences and wishes for natural period products people have. Galaske and Crunk fit like puzzle pieces together, with Crunk often calling Galaske “her translator”.
This small and mighty team of three is so excited and passionate to bring you the next wave of regenerative period care products–going beyond organic to bring healing principles to bodies and the land. Truly, healing the earth with our periods. Buckle up, 2023 is gonna be the year! Launching in the summer…be sure you sign up for our email so you don’t miss out on our launch and some top-secret programs we will be initiating along the way!