There is no doubt that the world has changed dramatically since the global spread of COVID-19 early this year. For Heather Clark — founder and owner of the valley-based Pomchies company, a leader in fashion accessories from headwear and luggage tags to pet products and water bottle carriers all made from durable, stretchy and washable material — in-process orders dropped immediately by 80 percent as many of her clients were college bookstores. In response, Clark used her savvy business skills and a little creativity to launch POM MASK, a line of face masks designed to help people comply with CDC guidelines to lower the risk of spreading the virus by covering the face as well as to protect wearers against airborne sources of infection… and to keep her company alive.
“Immediately, we saw an opportunity to accommodate the demand for face masks to provide safety on a global scale while also do something to survive this crisis as a business,” says Clark, a serial entrepreneur who founded the Pomchies company in 2002 based on the concept of recycling excess swimsuit material (from a previous company) to make hair accessories and other products as a way to recycle materials and eliminate waste. “We knew we could take materials we already use to flex our business model, accommodate a critical need, and hopefully leave our own positive stamp on this pandemic which has devastated the world we’re used to. As a business owner it’s important to look at unforeseen circumstances, good and bad, and try to find a way to learn from them, to grow from them and to benefit from them — as well as help others benefit.”
Many of the Pomchies products have been developed out of Clark’s own desire for products she couldn’t find on the market. The masks follow suit and demand has been overwhelming. Since April 3, Pomchies has produced more than 100,000 POM MASKS and has now launched more than 22 different two-pack mask bundles in custom colors and designs. In just this short window of time, the Pomchies factory has gone from not making masks at all to producing more than 5,000 POM MASKS every day.
POM MASKs have quickly became a hot commodity, with some of the company’s regular customers picking up the product to carry. For example, one college campus bookstores ordered more than 3,000 two-packs after selling more than 1,200 in just one day and another Pomchies’ client, a grocery store chain with 24 stores Missouri, tripled an original order after selling out of the masks in just one weekend.
Wholesalers can purchase two-packs of POM MASKs for just $4.95 per pack; consumers can purchase each two-pack directly from the website for $9.95 per pack. Each two-pack comes with one patterned mask and one solid fabric mask in a coordinating color. Retail orders can be placed directly online. Each handmade mask is produced with comfortable, machine washable and breathable swimwear fabric making it both functional and fashionable.
Heather Logan Clark created Pomchies in 2002 out of a desire to utilize the excess unused swimsuit material from her previous swimwear company. All of the products are produced from the highest quality swimwear fabric that is durable, waterproof, washable, reasonably priced and also eco-friendly. Clark is proud to be a certified woman-owned company that has offered products that countless host. Pomchies products are currently available locations throughout the United States, as well as globally in Australia, Japan, Singapore, Thailand and the UK.