The birth of WooWoo
What originally started as an antidote to the typical 'fem care' products that women were ashamed to buy is now a cult sexual wellness brand dedicated to teaching women that they are not a supporting role when it comes to sex, and they deserve to put their pleasure first. WooWoo was launched by Lucy, fem tech entrepreneur and working single mother of two, who was determined to add some va va voom to the fem care industry and provide products and a judgement free space for women to explore their sexuality. WooWoo has been an incredibly successful three year start up built entirely with a six member squad and remarkably without bricks and mortar.
The idea for WooWoo was born in September 2016 (to give you some context, that's the summer of Drake's One Dance and the mannequin challenge - yes, it feels a lifetime ago). From an initial meeting at Jamie's Italian where Lucy tried to explain her vision seriously "yes, fun vagina products is the name of the game", who knew that fast forward a year and WooWoo's launch party at the Box would see a naked couple performing suspended by rope surrounded by the cast of Love Island and Towie taking selfies with WooWoo Intimate Cleansing Wash. Fast forward another year and WooWoo is now a popular disruptive brand well on its way to becoming a category leader for female sexual wellness in the UK.
Building a business without bricks
Being a femtech company, it almost goes without saying that WooWoo is an all female team personally invested in putting sexuality taboos to bed and starting conversations. But what really makes the team remarkable is the work set up. At its core the brand is about liberation and empowerment and that extends to the way the team works. Founder Lucy says "Around every corner we’re met with serious - we’re all about giving the middle finger to societal norms" and that includes normal working situations.
Recognising early on that a 5 day work week with strict hours may not necessarily work for everyone, WooWoo founder Lucy collected her remote team like lucky charms on a Tiffany bracelet, giving each team member the security of a job but the autonomy and freedom of being their own boss. Being in charge of their own schedule not only gives the team the freedom to go to the gym when it's empty, flexibility to masturbate at lunch time and the luxury of not being turned down holiday because Sandra from accounts wants to straddle the May bank holiday too - it also means the team can work during their energy peaks, make time for school pick ups and chaotic lifestyles, pursue side hustles and work from pretty much anywhere in the world. Instead of checking out mentally at 4pm and sitting there like a lemon til 6, the team is sickeningly motivated.
In the midst of a crisis where people are adjusting to working from home, the WooWoo team is perfectly used to it, having done it from day dot. Not sharing an office space means the team relies on trust, collaboration and good communication. The five team members are all in different cities but all on the same page. Granted not having an office has found the team in precarious situations; squirting orgasm illustrations on the Eurostar, a bag full of condoms being retrieved in lost and found and multiple dildos being ferried across London for shoots (not to mention eyebrow raising search histories on personal computers), but the healthy work life balance more than makes up for it. While it may not be London, Paris, New York - Newport, Oxford, London, Chichester and Brussels works for WooWoo. It's been a labour of love sponsored by breakfasts at Ole & Steen, walking and talking through St James park, frantic Whatsapps and sauvignon blanc that has managed to strike a unique balance between uncertain freelancing and 'flexi working'.
Lucy's mantra has always been 'it needs to be fun' - from the products, to the communications and of course, the team. The core team are six women who boss it all day from couches, cafes and coworking spaces (à la Carrie Bradshaw). Believe it or not the team have only ever all been in the same room on one occasion. A mix of singles, mothers, glam girls and meme queens (a modern day Sporty, Baby, Posh, Ginger and Scary) means WooWoo covers all bases and gets the tone right. Talking about sex educationally doesn't have to be serious. Funny oversharing (think older big sis vibes) really helps women open up about taboo topics like sex. WooWoo's virtual office (if they had a real one it would be neon) is powered by Google Drive, Zoom and Whatsapp. Between Lucy drumming up new business and staying on top of accounts, the PR girls finding press and collaboration opportunities and campaign ideas, the socials girl creating a cult following fan club and the designer keeping the brand on fleek and the visuals poppin the team hustles hard (even if it is from the couch sometimes).
Whats next for woowoo?
Pushing the message out has been somewhat of an uphill battle - magazines that won't feature feminine care products, hateful emails and rejected adverts. But the endless positive DMs, rewarding customer stories and reviews will continue to propel WooWoo in its mission to put the female sexuality taboo to bed. WooWoo doesn’t do things by the book, so instead of following the status quo, for every slammed door and 'the answer is no', they seek out alternative opportunities to spread the mission and the message - the team believes “we're the masters of our own destiny, and we effing love what we do”.
From Ride with WooWoo spinning events (they will return post lockdown), to more recent Insta Live collaborations such as the Pub(ic) Quiz and Bingo sessions with sexpert Alix Fox, and live art classes with Phaedra Peer, WooWoo is all about bringing the fun to the sisterhood, whilst normalising the conversation around female sexuality. We all do it, we all love it, and we want more! There are big plans for the months ahead too, from new product launches to partnerships, events and campaigns, so keep coming back to the website and socials for fresh news and updates.