Nyssa is challenging the way women recover after childbirth. They’re changing how we talk about it, too

October 30, 2023 | By Justin Kirkland, copywriter

Before her most recent entrepreneurial chapter, Eden Laurin worked in food and beverage—specifically the cocktail industry, bringing products to market. By 2016, she had become partner at the James Beard Award–winning bar the Violet Hour, in Chicago. Mind you, this was while she was founding a 5013C called the Drinking Fountain. Oh, and she was nine months pregnant.


That’s when there was a major shift in focus. After Laurin gave birth to her first child, she was stunned by the reality that follows childbirth. “I was given a lot of pointers on how to take care of the baby,” Laurin remembers. “I was given no pointers on how to take care of myself.” Postpartum care was a conversation that largely only happened via whisper, and the market of products to help women after childbirth was essentially nonexistent.

That period of time, which is also known as the “fourth trimester,” is the next frontier in pregnancy care. “When you give birth, no one is telling you—no one—what to expect in that fourth trimester,” Laurin explains. “It’s very baby-centric, and you’re kind of forgotten about.” Laurin remembers after a 30-hour delivery, she was sent home with a “one-size-fits-all, see-through mesh” undergarment, a large sanitary pad to line the mesh underwear, and a disposable and plastic ice pack.

That initial childbirth experience is what inspired Nyssa, which she describes as “a new women’s well-being start-up dedicated to innovating resources and products to help people through the most physically and emotionally transformative times of life.” But Nyssa’s roots are entrenched in more than just entrepreneurial success. From the beginning, the company set out to address what Laurin calls “the unmentionables of womanhood.” Before you can present the solution to the unmentionables, women have to speak them into the conversation. And to have a conversation, you need a community.

Before Nyssa launched its product line, Laurin and her collaborators discussed the conversations currently happening around the fourth trimester. What are the tips they wish they’d known? What would doctors, friends, doulas, and everyone in between impart upon those facing this huge lifestyle and physiological change ahead? That led to the development of The Unmentionables, a podcast launched before any product hit the market. The company also used Substack as a base to post anything from podcast audio to video interviews that spoke more directly to women’s needs.

“You get your period for 30-plus years, but somehow, we’re not talking about the pain,” she says. “We’re not talking about the options because we have very little language to discuss it.” There are few markets like feminine care—an industry that reaches 51% of the world’s population, and yet somehow remains fairly taboo. Commercials dictating the efficacy of period-related products used blue liquid to represent blood up until 2020. Nyssa understood the importance of speaking candidly about topics that affect millions of women every day.

Once Nyssa got the conversation started, the company released their first product: the FourthWear underwear. The product took over a year to make, and was designed with women’s bodies in mind. The product helped directly address the pain and discomfort that women often deal with in the months following childbirth, with consideration to how it can be worn to maximize comfort for postpartum bodies. Split into specific categories, wear and care products for postpartum issues include underwear and bralettes with pockets that allow for reusable cold and heat packs to provide comfort and help prevent complications associated with Caesarean incisions and the perineal region. Though the impetus behind Nyssa started with postpartum products, the truth is, the entire life cycle of women’s needs lacked the types of products women needed. Not only were additional products needed, but some of the existing products on the market didn’t take into consideration the design that best fit women, the shapes of their bodies, and the particular needs.

Happy baby

After Eden Laurin’s first experience giving birth, she realized that the one-size-fits-all approach she experienced at the hospital was not what she wanted for herself, or any other post-partum parent.

From there, Nyssa developed therapy and period care products, including specific period underwear and leggings. As the company expands, it has turned an eye to wellness and self-care. What products on the market speak to endometriosis? Or chronic pain? Thyroids or cysts? All are common hurdles women face, and yet, there’s not much discussion around the products that can alleviate a bit of the stress involved. One of the brand’s most recent innovations is a mirror that fits between the thighs, allowing women to self-inspect and self-groom. As the conversation has grown, so has the company and the audience that Nyssa serves.

The next step is continuing to introduce Nyssa and its purpose to the world. The most powerful asset in an industry like women’s health is, obviously, word of mouth. But when it comes to scalability, Nyssa continues to look forward and consider the best ways to expand brand awareness. While the company is largely focused on growth in the U.S., it has a small presence in the U.K. Another difficulty that the company faces is resources. Good intentions are great, but money is pretty helpful, too, though getting a woman-owned brand that specializes in women-centric products is tricky. “Generally, women don’t have access to working capital,” Laurin explains. “I think 2% of women1 have access to venture capital funds. You’re running against a lot of headwinds.”

At the present, Nyssa’s grassroots approach has cultivated a strong following in big cities, with a hometown advantage in Laurin’s home of Chicago. A network of doctors, ob-gyns, doulas, and female care professionals have also helped to spread the word, suggesting Nyssa as a solution for so many of the “unmentionables” that are gaining notability in the medical world. That brand awareness is extremely important, especially in an even more extremely online commerce landscape.

“Amazon Ads has been an important resource to introduce our brand to new and relevant consumers. Our category is still emerging, and because of the silence around postpartum and women’s needs, many are still learning products like ours exist,” Laurin says. “Amazon Ads has helped us create awareness of these essential products, while also increasing brand recognition and brand equity for Nyssa. Because of this, we have seen successful results—most recently, a 10x return on ad spend—on our marketing efforts with Amazon Ads.”

Taking an omnichannel approach, Nyssa started using Amazon Ads as a marketing resource in 2020, but as Laurin explains it, the company really leaned into playing with Amazon Ads solutions in 2023. They’ve used Sponsored Products on the “wear” items, which are of the brand’s most in-demand. For consumers interested in the “wear” vertical, they’re served ads for the “care” portion. It’s a thoughtful approach that takes women and purchasing behavior into consideration, allowing Nyssa to grow awareness of products in adjacent categories in tight financial times. Laurin explains that women are more likely to put their own needs on the back burner—something Nyssa wants to help course correct.

“When you’re talking to women and a product they don’t necessarily know that they need, they need to see you in multiple places, in multiple ways,” she explains. “It’s a good time for them to meet Nyssa or to reinforce Nyssa on their mind.”

As the brand grows, the all-women team behind Nyssa is intent on making sure that women aren’t just supported during their fourth trimester (and beyond), but also heard. After all, the reason for Nyssa’s existence isn’t because female personal care is new. It’s because women were taught they shouldn’t be discussing it. That it wasn’t appropriate. But when a brand like Nyssa comes along and says the quiet part out loud, over and over again, the days of the unmentionables are a history long forgotten.