We are Khana—a Buy One, Give One underwear brand on a mission to help girls in the developing world manage menstruation and stay in school.
After graduating high school, our founder, Shayna Fowler, moved to East Africa for a year. Through working with a local non-profit, she met Esther, the 16-year-old girl that changed the trajectory of Shayna's life. Esther’s inability to manage menstruation deprived her of education. Her story is far too common.
We believe when a girl's basic needs are met, she can focus less on surviving in the world and more on transforming it.
But, without a solution to manage monthly cycles, over 8 million girls in Sub-Saharan Africa miss one week of school every month. Many girls drop out entirely once they start their period.
Could something as simple as a period-proof panty keep girls in school?
We think so. This is why we started Khana.
Khana is a Buy One, Give One—for every pair of Khana panties you buy, a pair is given to a girl in need.
However, the panties you buy and the panties we give are intentionally different.
Ugandan Period-Proof Panty
While women in the States likely have access to feminine hygiene products, most girls in Uganda don’t. In regions where girls cannot access or afford feminine hygiene products, they use mud, rags, or leaves to stop the bleeding. Of course, this causes severe discomfort and even infection.
In collaboration with our Giving Partners, we are thoughtfully designing a period-proof panty to help Ugandan girls stay in school.
U.S. Bikini-Cut Panty
Now, a bit about the powerful pair we’ve designed for (and with) you.
After a year and a half of research, 1,142 interviews, and valuable insight from industry experts, we’ve learned a thing or two about panties.
According to you, underwear should be tag-less, breathable, and ethically-produced. You’re tired of underwear that loses its shape after just one wash. You don’t want to sacrifice comfort for style, and you don’t have to.
By backing our Kickstarter, you're funding our first ever Khana panty—a traditional bikini cut made with odor-neutralizing bamboo, organic cotton, and just enough spandex to stay in place.
To contour to your unique shape, Khana Panties are carefully engineered with reinforced seams and lush fibers. And, with moisture-wicking properties that are resistant to bacteria, these panties are soft, durable, and absurdly comfortable.
It’s that simple. Exceptional quality for you, equal opportunity for her. That's the power of just one pair.
While our bikini-cut panties are made in the USA, Khana manufactures 100% of our period-proof panties in Uganda to create jobs and contribute to economic sustainability. Once the most powerful pair of panties for Uganda are developed and tested, our Giving Partners will distribute them directly to schools.
Whether bikini-cut or period-proof, Khana is committed to developing the world’s most powerful pair of panties alongside those who will wear them.
In the summer of 2017, Shayna returned to Uganda to participate in a two-week-intensive entrepreneurship training. The nonprofit facilitating the training, MMM, is fully run and staffed by Ugandans and emphasizes wholistic community development. Their areas of focus include agriculture, income generation, health, and spirituality. Khana's goal is to partner with local women and men who are already doing meaningful work in their community at grass-root levels. Based on Shayna's firsthand experience (and decades of success stories), MMM is the perfect Giving Partner for Khana.
We believe in the power of panties, but we can’t move forward without you. By backing our Kickstarter, you are:
- Enabling Khana to produce our first line of bikini-cut panties in the United States (this is the really expensive part)
- Develop and distribute our period-proof panties in Mbale, Uganda
Limited Edition, Bikini-Cut Khana Panty
- 64% Bamboo Viscose, 28% Organic Cotton, 8% Spandex
- Reinforced seams
- Lush fibers
- Resistant to bacteria
Exclusive 'Powerful' Baseball Hat
- One size fits all
- Embroidered text
Vinyl Khana Stickers
- Thick, durable vinyl protects your stickers from scratches, water & sunlight
- 2 designs
- Black graphite pencil engraved with the word 'Powerful'
- 11x17" cardstock poster
Shayna Fowler — Founder
Shayna Fowler (left) is a twenty-two-year-old Ohio native living in Los Angeles. With a Bachelor’s degree in Entrepreneurship, she is committed to using business and innovation as tools for social and global impact. Prior to her work with Khana, at the age of fifteen, Shayna founded a non-profit that held self-esteem and student rights assemblies for fifth-twelfth grade girls. Within the first two years of the organization’s existence, nine girls in Central Ohio were rescued from sex trafficking, garnering national attention. Upon graduating high school, Shayna spent one year in East Africa working in schools and juvenile detention centers. These experiences, combined with a high value for women’s equality, led Shayna to launch Khana.
Alex Ry — Brand Director
As a Chicago-based multidisciplinary designer, creative, and strategist, Alex Ry (right), twenty-two, is passionate about bringing brands to life through compelling storytelling and thoughtful design. Preceding her work with Khana, she worked as a photographer for travel and fashion blogger Truelane, documenting her travels for the fall of 2016 Big Four Fashion Weeks. Later, Alex worked at a fast-paced creative agency, Open Book Communications, serving mission-driven organizations such as The Stony Brook School, Together 2016, and The New York Project. These experiences uniquely qualified her to take Khana from a well-intentioned idea to a full-fledged brand with the capacity to make a tangible difference in the world.
Get behind-the-scenes photos & updates about Khana via Kickstarter by backing this campaign.
We couldn't possibly do this alone. We want to personally thank each of you who have gone above and beyond in helping to bring Khana to life. (Y'ALL ARE THE REAL MVPs)
- Rick Camacho — Cinematographer, Video Producer
- Greg Stewart — Motion Design
- Steph Shep — Influencer, Connector, and PR
- Kelly Mustapha — Design Consultant
- Danielle Von Keller — Model
- Klarissa Inumerable — Model
- Katharyn Vera — Model
- MaCassa Johnson — Model
- Shalom Parker — Model
- Zainah Haider — Model and Influencer
- Katie Meyers — Model
- Hannah Wong — Model
- Karina Garcia — Model
- Hanna Atiyeh — Model
- Taylor Stephens — Accountant
- Brittany Green — Makeup Artist and Lighting Guru
- Emily Donavon + Family — Admin; Chicago Shoot Hosts, and Professional Encouragers
- Alex + Dan Cesario — Chicago Shoot Hosts
- Janey Haataja — Makeup Artist
- Rachel McHale — Makeup Artist
- Chelsea Frye — Hair Stylist
- Maura and John Stoffer at The Frances Chicago — Studio Space
- Catherine Grace — Web Development
- Deanna Doersch — Experiential Design + Press Dinner Coordinating
- Madi Reimer — Influencer
- Chelsea Lankford of Truelane — Influencer
- Sam Landreth — Influencer
- Mandy Lancia of The Glossary — Influencer
- Zoila Darton — Influencer
- Danyel Moe — Influencer
- Cycle House LA — Charity Ride
- Nichelle Hines — Charity Ride Instructor
- Adam Family — For believing in this vision enough to invest your time, energy, and resources
- All who contributed to our prototyping phase in June of 2018
- Michelle Fugate — Chairs for Chicago Shoot
- Praxis Labs — Emerging Founders 2018
- Alex Ry's Mama — Undying love, creative and strategic input, cheerleading, de-stressing, and general moral support
- Alex Ry's People — Your encouragement and love, day after day.
- Gary + Deni Fowler — The Gift of the Minivan
- Shayna Fowler's Tribe — For all your wild ideas, relentless affirmation, and honest critiques. Khana is better because of you
Risks and challenges
Pending a successful Kickstarter campaign, Khana's greatest risk is our timeline. Because our panties are made with the highest quality fabric, it is not readily available in mass quantities in the United States. Therefore, we have to place a custom order to get the fabric woven and dyed. Our dyes are eco-friendly and non-carcinogenic. They do not produce harmful aromatic amines or acute toxins, and their color lasts. Dyeing with people and the planet in mind takes a while, but we think you (and Mother Earth) are worth it.
So, in summary, sourcing our fabric and elastic, shipping our materials to our manufacturer in New York, and having enough capital to begin manufacturing these panties in bulk on a tight timeline is a significant challenge. However, we are committed to transparency in all things—our panties and our Kickstarter progress. We will continually post updates and prioritize communication with our backers so you stay in the know!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)