Name: Zipporah Jarmon
Job Description: Founder/CEO of Pyramid Seven
Guilty Pleasure: Ice Cream
Weird Fears: Worms and all species that remind her of worms
Random facts: She’s left-handed, has never been stung by a bee, once climbed a mountain, and loved the national spelling bee.
Pyramid Seven is a Chicago-based company founded by Zipporah Jarmon. Their tagline: boxer briefs for periods, not gender. Pyramid Seven practices validating customer's gender identity and expression. I recently learned about this company through my assistant, Ivana.
For the most part, I like wearing panties. They make me feel a little more protected and comfortable, and it feels nice when they make your butt look cute, too. As a lingerie designer, it would be a little crazy for me to NOT like panties. It seems pretty obvious in hindsight, but after talking to Zipporah, I realized this was a very clear problem she was working to solve. Those that don't identify with pronouns of (she/her) feel extra uncomfortable wearing panties during their period. Many of my friends rock boxer briefs or go commando and say hell no to underwear altogether.
However, Zipporah Jarmon was sick and tired of wearing panties for one week out of the month. In her words, complaining about and not doing something about it meant that she was compliant. So, she took the initiative to make a product that no one else saw a need for. As a result, Zipporah Jarmon is the Founder/CEO of Pyramid Seven to an underwear line for periods, not gender.
Underwear that an individual can identify anywhere on the gender spectrum and menstruate. I had the luxury of speaking to her about her groundbreaking product!
K: So, tell me, were you always interested in starting your own company? What inspired you to create your own business?
Z: I've always been someone who enjoyed the creative process of seeing a problem and creating a solution. I've always tried to look for ways to improve my own life and others, so in that sense, yes. I've come up with a lot of business ideas over the years.
K: What was the beginning like when you started Pyramid Seven? Did you have a hard time getting started, or did the pieces fall into place?
Z: It was exciting, and I felt determined. It seemed like everything fell into place in a way, I found someone to create the product pretty immediately, but there was a lot of hard work because I had never owned a company previously, so there was a lot of learning that I had to do.
K: Was it scary when you first went out on your own? How did you get started?
Z: It was exhilarating. It felt like we were doing something big.
K: I remember that feeling! There's nothing like it!
K: What is the biggest failure you've experienced in your business? What did you learn from it?
Z: The most challenging thing was choosing to take a break from the business. I needed to take a step away and look at the full picture. I realized that I was making decisions for the company that wasn't the best move for the business's longevity.
K: What's the best advice you've ever received in life or business?
Z: Where there's a will, there's away. This was something taught to me as a young child that I'm sure has religious roots, and even though I'm not religious, I believe that anything is possible with a strong will and determination.
K: What's the most recent lesson your business has taught you?
Z: If it's taking tremendous energy to do something, then you probably shouldn't be doing it. Things that are meant to happen usually happen with ease.
K: What advice would you give to aspiring female entrepreneurs?
Z: Do your research, find good partnerships, and don't take shit from no one.
K: What's your favorite part about being a business owner? What's the hardest part?
Z: Being in charge, having a vision, and bringing it to life. It was a lot of challenging work, but it was beautiful to see ideas come to life.
The hardest part was not having any experience and just starting from scratch.
K: I hear you, starting without a clear beginning makes it hard to even know what to do as step number one.
K: What is something you have accomplished that you are most proud of?
Z: I'm proud that it changed the world. Gender inclusivity wasn't a thing or a conversation before Pyramid Seven.
K: What are the most important skills or traits you've found helpful in entrepreneurship? Are there any traits you've discovered that make it harder to succeed if you don't keep it in check?
Z: ORGANIZATION AND ROUTINE! It would be best to have a strong strategy, routine, and plan, even down to your daily schedule when you wake up and have lunch. These small details help you accomplish your goals. And If you don't have a strategy or routine, you won't accomplish your goals.
K: What's your favorite 'game-changer' tool that you can share with everyone? (ie. hellobonsai, airtable, later, etc.).
Z: I really like Miro; it's a great brainstorming tool.
K: OH, I've only recently started hearing about that tool. It’s a new find I need to put in my toolbox! Miro is an online collaborative whiteboarding platform that enables distributed teams to work effectively together, from brainstorming with digital sticky notes to planning and managing agile workflows. It sounds like something a new founder would use.
K: So, Zipporah, where can we find you if we'd like to learn more about you?
While Pyramid Seven is currently under construction, Zipporah says she will absolutely continue her open dialogue around gender and menstruating. “It’s important to have this conversation, especially in the climate that we’re in and other people taking away our rights and making people feel bad about who they are,” she says.
On a more personal note, Jarmon says she feels more comfortable and more like herself in her Pyramid Seven underwear. “It’s changed a lot of how I feel about myself when I’m on my period,” Jarmon says. “I feel more confident.”