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Tights and stockings have long been essential to almost every wardrobe. However, there is always the worry of a run, rip, or hole appearing after one wear. It is something that we have just dealt with—wear nylons once, notice the damage, sigh, and pull out a new pair the next day. Maybe you’ve tried life hacks like nail polish on the rip to try and mend it (spoiler alert: it doesn’t really work). Is this the way that we must deal with a fairly essential item of clothing? 

No. It’s not. 

Enter Sheertex. This company and its founder, Katherine Homuth, have achieved what hasn’t been done before: creating tights, stockings, and nylons that are unbreakable. Not only does this solve a problem that affects so many consumers, but also it addresses economic and environmental aspects as well. 

Being someone who incorporates stockings into many of my outfits, I was very excited to learn more about the company and its story. On November 2, 2020, I sat down with Madison Sickinger via Zoom to learn more about Sheertex and what it encapsulates. Sickinger is the executive assistant to Katherine Homuth and works very closely with her. 

While traveling around the world and working for PCH, Homuth was wearing lots of stockings to meetings and events. She ended up with a drawer of ripped pantyhose. And then it came to her: this is a problem that has never been fixed…why? “She started researching for about a year and a half all about the industry to figure out why nothing has been made so far to combat this problem… and really just hit the ground running,” Sickinger explained. 

So what exactly are these unbreakable tights made out of? Was it easy to do?

Well, there of course were a few different prototypes before the final product. The first one resembled a cheesecloth! But the actual material was really strong, made possible by a proprietary fiber that is in their knit. “It’s super strong, super durable… if you go dollar to pound, it’s worth more than silver,” Sickinger added. Homuth figured out a way to blend this miracle fiber with other materials, creating a unique and durable one knit blend. Every one of Sheertex’s products uses the special fiber, which is one of their largest selling points. 

The factory and company were originally quite small. Once the company began to blow up, Sheertex moved from the small facility it initially was in, to one of the largest factories in North America. It is in Montreal with 150+ employees. The building itself includes their offices, the actual factory where production happens, as well as their packaging and distribution area.

Despite a government-mandated production shutdown due to COVID-19, there has been a silver lining. Sheertex came out with their own version of masks. They’ve gotten great feedback regarding this new addition as well. The product line has expanded from just tights and stockings to masks, scrunchies, even shorts and underwear at one point. 

In regards to my question about the sustainability aspect of the company, Sickinger had some very exciting information to share. They have something called their Second Chances Collection. “When we take waste materials [something that gets sent back, or has flaws], we actually repurpose it into other products. The whole idea is that everything in life, including the clothing you wear, should get a second chance. We really try to mitigate waste in every aspect of the organization.”

At the beginning of the interview, I had asked if in the formulation of the product itself, was sustainability a component at play. “Absolutely,” Sickinger replied, “For Katherine, it’s just not economical or sustainable for anyone, and also climate wise, for every woman [or man] to have a drawer of pantyhose that are ripped.” Fast fashion creates millions of single use tights each season, which adds on to the waste as well. Having a 30+ use pair of good quality tights totally eliminates that.

Until now, consumers (including myself) have just accepted the inevitability of tights ripping incredibly quickly. However now, there is the game changer of Sheertex, which not only saves money in the long run, but also is an article of clothing that lasts. It was created with the consumer in mind, and not in the way to make consumers constantly be repurchasing the item, but for there to be an item on the market that benefits us (and our wardrobe). 

Stay tuned next week for my review of the unbreakable Sheertex tights! 

 

Sascha Rifkin

Emerson '23

I'm a Writing, Lit, and Publishing major at Emerson College! Fashionista, book worm, and total romantic at heart.
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