Names: Taran Ghatrora and Bunny Ghatrora
Job titles: CEO and COO, Blume
Ages: 27 and 25
Currently live in: Vancouver
Education: Taran: BA in psychology, Simon Fraser University; LLB, Cardiff University, MLL, University of British Columbia. Bunny: BTech in accounting, British Columbia Institute of Technology
By now, we’ve all heard the stats: Girls steadily lose self-esteem during puberty. It’s an inevitable drop-off…or is it? That’s what Taran and Bunny Ghatrora, the Vancouver-based sisters behind Blume, asked themselves. “Sixty percent of our audience said that their self-esteem decreased. This is what we are trying to change!” says Taran. “Here’s another not-so-fun fact,” adds Bunny. “Nine to 12 are also the ages most girls drop out of STEM fields and sports. When you feel less alone during these ages and get the right education, we think this can change.” As their website proudly claims, “Periods and puberty should never affect potential.”
Launched in June 2018, Blume offers organic cotton tampons and pads, as well as skincare and body products, via subscription or one-off sales. (Products are also available in select Urban Outfitters stores.) The overall vibe of Blume, with its soft pastel palette, is a warm embrace, but don’t get it twisted—the Ghatrora sisters are serious. They mean to change the conversation around not only puberty and periods but also sex education and all things that matter to the achievement of women.
Blume recently launched an offshoot—The States of Sex Ed, a U.S.-focused campaign meant to combat the surprising (or not so surprising) fact that “Only nine states mandate that medically accurate sex education is taught in public schools; Canada is faring much better,” says Taran. (Plus, most of their business comes from the U.S., so focusing on an issue crucial to their customer base makes sense.) The States of Sex Ed site not only offers “factual, comprehensive sex education” via free educational materials, such as guides like “Gender, Body Science and Conception” and “STIs and Safe Sex Practices,” it’s also encouraging young women to advocate for themselves in support of the Real Education for Healthy Youth Act (REHYA). The bill would create the first federally funded sex education program as well as keep that money safe from false and harmful abstinence-based education.
Changing sex education policy via the self-care business may seem far from law and accounting—which the sisters studied and practiced, respectively—but their entrepreneurial, change-making streak is inspired by their parents. “We’re so grateful to have grown up in Canada,” says Taran. “Our parents are both immigrants and were always very hard-working. Our dad worked two jobs for a really long time. Seeing that really instilled a strong work ethic in both of us and inspired us to make an impact where we could.”