Journelle and Dame are on a mission to empower women in every aspect of their lives - including and especially the bedroom! Our goal is to encourage women to embrace and express their sexuality with the help of our curated designer lingerie and, of course, sexual wellness accessories.
Journelle carries various sexual wellness toys to turn up the heat every night. Whether you spend the night solo or coupled up, sexual wellness toys can bring pleasure to your nighttime routine. Each toy is different and our Lingeristas can help you pick the right one for you to explore the best parts of yourself!
Dame Products, a popular sexual wellness brand, is founded and run by Alexandra Fine - this badass CEO isn’t afraid to tell you how she feels when it comes to women and their sexuality. Journelle got an exclusive look into her world, Dame’s mission and how they are uplifting women every day to not be afraid to claim the space we deserve. Continue reading to learn more about Dame Products journey and how they are striving to close the pleasure gap! Can we just say - A-wo-men!
1. You are a female founder of your own company, what has helped you get to where you are today?
Possibly the most significant factor is a community of supportive and ambitious women. This is especially true at Dame. We’ve created a company culture of authenticity, vulnerability and trust. All of these are critical in our business – where we talk about sex every single day at work. Our employees are passionate, results-driven, and each bring their own unique skill set and life experiences to Dame’s work and mission. I've always been interested in sexuality, but I wish I had known just how resistant some people would be to having a conversation about sex. Our greatest roadblocks have been in situations where there is no opportunity for an open dialogue. When we have the chance to explain exactly what we do, and why opening up the conversation about sex is crucial to so many aspects of our lives, we see the lightbulbs go on. While it’s sometimes been challenging to have the opportunity to be heard, we’ve also made incredible strides as a company to dispel the sexual shame and help more people have pleasurable sex. For every naysayer, there are always more supporters and testimonials to our work – that keeps me going!
2. How does Dame strive to empower women?
With the bold insistence that we deserve more, both in the bedroom and out. We first started Dame Products with a mission to close the pleasure gap – the disparity in the satisfaction that people with vulvas experience in the bedroom, versus their cis male counterparts. The fact that the majority of people with vulvas need clitoral stimulation for pleasurable sex is more widely understood than it was a decade ago. When we first started, we were one of few companies making sex toys led by people with vulvas – who understood firsthand the anatomy we were designing for. Now, we’re being joined by so many women and nonbinary folks looking to disrupt sex tech.
We’re also driven by the desire to encourage open conversations around sexuality, through building a welcoming community, designing innovative tools, and bringing life-changing education to your bedroom. We emphasize the notion that sexual health and pleasure are essential components of overall wellness & health. And as sex becomes a more public part of everyday conversation, we aim to create effective, well-designed products that seamlessly incorporate into your everyday life.
3. What's a recent "girl power" moment you had?
We closed a $4 Million raise in seed funding in February 2021! I’m beyond proud of how efficient we’ve been over the past six years, stretching less than $1.5 million in crowdfunding to support all of our efforts. But now we get to look ahead and set our sights high with multiple product launches slated for this year alone and a growing focus on how sex and pleasure serve a primary role in our overall health (we have plans to build out a clinical advisory board).
4. At Journelle, we hear a lot of moving stories about women's experiences with their bodies - what has helped you with your own relationship with your body?
I think sex is a huge part of self-confidence and body image. Your ability to enjoy sex and the way you feel about your body are really tied together. I’ve learned to love parts of my body that I didn’t use to love, or didn’t think I’d ever love. Like, your lower belly is actually this really squishy, sensual place. It’s so much of where orgasms come from.
You know what I want to add? I love my thighs now. I hated my thighs growing up. That’s changed in the past three years. Part of it was that I looked at my husband’s porn history and saw he liked curvy girls. I was like, yeah! Meaty thighs. And now I think it’s sexy. You know what? Being secure doesn’t mean you don’t have insecurities. I think it’s still OK to look in the mirror and wish [your body] was a little different. But it’s good to also realize what you love about your body. Loving your body is cool, it’s something you can get a lot of self-worth from.
5. What taboos related to women in your industry do you wish were broken?
I wish we could more openly talk about sex, both culturally and logistically. Because we sell sex toys, we're prohibited from many modes of advertising – including subway ads with the MTA in New York City. When we first set out to advertise with the MTA, we went back and forth with their team for months ensuring we could meet their guidelines. Initially, we were given the green light to advertise with them. We ordered additional inventory and spent money on the creative. Then, there was radio silence and months later our ads were denied.
The vague and sexist reasons behind the MTA's refusal to show our ads are not only barring many businesses like ours from growing their companies, but their censorship is a violation of first amendment rights. Advertisements are hugely influential to our culture and we want to stand up for the needs and desires of vulva-havers everywhere–which is why we’re actively suing the MTA. This lawsuit is important because it is necessary for us to change the societal misconception that sexual pleasure for femme-identifying humans is “inappropriate” while endorsing the sexual pleasure of men as essential for their health/well-being.
6. What advice would you give to young women today?
Know your values, know your worth and check any advice you receive against those. There is really no “right” way to do anything, but in business and in life we can get really hung up on that — this dilemma of whether or not you made some objectively correct decision. But when you face major decisions, both ways are the right path — it’s just about committing to things and following them through earnestly. There is no such thing as a wrong path.Head to our Instagram account @shopjournelle to watch our newest IGTV, “Intimate Chat with Dame” to learn more about self-pleasure, masturbation tips and more!