Why I Desired to Create a LUXE Women’s Brand
By Jean Criss, Digital Mediapreneur, Author, Speaker, Fashion Designer
As a woman in business for 35 years, I have gained a lot of experience from the F500 corporate workplace to many business collaborations and, most recently, with entrepreneurial spirit. Regardless of what role I play as a leader in business, senior manager, publisher, sales exec, media/marketing specialist, entrepreneur, author/blogger/columnist, or fashionista, I’ve learned about what women like to wear!
Whether I was leading my sales team meetings or pitching new clients, I wanted to always look professional and fashionable. I wanted a flare of fashion - worn underneath with intimate apparel to over garments with stylish, trendy ready-to-wear apparel. So after I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in July 2007, I was really astonished by the ugly utilitarian post-surgical undergarments the hospitals and physicians suited me up in, still being used today. So much so, that I put my pedal to the metal and decided to innovate contemporary new designs that would rock a woman’s world! After I documented my breast cancer journey in a Trilogy Series entitled My Pain Woke Me Up! (2012), I designed trendy, colorful, stylish, and oh, so comfortable fashionable bras and panties, to start with, plus many other contemporary designs under the CRISSCROSS Intimates brand.
A woman losing her breasts can be quite a traumatic experience. I desired to change the way a woman can feel and look during her recovery and, hence, my tagline was born:
FEEL CONFIDENT, LOOK BEAUTIFUL!
Here’s how I started.
A. I did so by first applying my media and tech experience to the world of fashion. I envisioned a LUXE Women’s collection offering Bras, matching Briefs, Thongs, Leggings and a full ensemble to mix and match styles and colors and allow Survivors fashionable options.
B. Then, I researched new innovative ways to change current designs to fashion forward in a market which seemed light-years behind with compression undergarments, contemporary styles and comfortable designs.
C. Next, I tested certain techniques (designs and fabrics) never used before with intimate apparel. From healing and luxurious double-bonded micro-fiber fabrics, magnetic and front wrap criss-cross closures, making every stylish design element significant to a Survivor’s ease use with the garments. Later given the nickname ‘the magnet chic’ for this revolutionary design.
D. I searched high and lo for new business partners to produce sample Bras and mass produce when we were ready for production. I really wanted to manufacture in the USA and after a national search, I found my partners in our backyard, in New York City. Crisscross Intimates products are made for Survivors by a Survivor, in the USA (NYC)!
E. Of course, simultaneously, I documented the intellectual property (IP) I had innovated by creating utility and design patents, trademarks and the proper use of copyrights throughout (2012-2013). I quickly learned to cross our “T’s and C’s” and dot our “I’s” to ensure a cohesive marketable brand out the gate!
F. I applied marketing ingenuity to branding and categorized what I had developed into three (3) distinct areas emphasizing unique characteristics with the Crisscross Intimates brand;
G. Styles have been named in memory of belated Survivors (family and friends with the Nina Bra, Christina Bra, Joe Vest, etc.) and the brand was dedicated to my belated first husband (Al Criss) who died tragically in my arms year ago - something I will never forget. And so, as another way to give back to those I care deeply about, I created the CRISSCROSS brand name with him in mind and added other design elements as well such as an inverted “J” for Jean as the breast cancer symbol into my logo and used that throughout the trademark and marketing collateral.
H. The brand received rave reviews and ISO award-winning design accreditation’s and many accolades in the press.
I. The brand was extended with a full collection of LUXE designs that are colorful, chic and contemporary offering women of all ages new styles to wear no matter what stage or phase of breast surgery they required. We’ve got you covered!
J. I introduced a LUXE women’s line with a soft launch in SoHo New York (10/2014) followed by product testing and modifications (2015-2016) and the official e-commerce web store launch (04/2017). Shortly after, we rolled out a full ensemble of post-surgical bras, mastectomy bras, recovery bras, panties, leggings, accessories, resources and products of inspiration and more with over 250 SKUs! Now we have close to 400 product offerings on our website. Shop til you drop!
K. The same strategies were applied to a fashion line specifically designed for LUXE Men. With two unique compression Vests initially introduced and then, additional partner brand styles added to form a full collection of Men’s Vests, Tanks and Shapewear offerings. Tagline: Feel Confident, Look Handsome!
CRISSCROSS Intimates continues to be marketed to multiple industries as a hybrid LUXE Intimate Apparel brand;
Retailers (lingerie, retail, specialty boutiques, mastectomy stores, etc.)
E-Commerce (e-retailers, affiliates, partner brands, etc.)
Healthcare (medical supply, hospitals, healthcare institutions, breast and plastic surgeons, etc.)
With emphasis on the medical/healthcare industry and mastectomy boutiques in particular, we were recognized for our award-winning ISO accredited designs and the sexy delivered in the marketplace. As an industry blogger devoted to advancements in women’s breast health and wellness, I was invited to Hollywood during our first year in the market which has been so exciting as a new intimate brand! We participated at the Fall 2018 Emmy Awards LUXE Red Carpet Celebrity Event, and will continue in 2019 as a key sponsor and partner brand at many other LUXE events.
CRISSCROSS Intimates is seeking funding and new business partners to grow our national and worldwide distribution channels, especially to introduce new USPTO patented-designs later this year.
My motto: Don’t let cancer get the BREAST of you!
Jean Criss is a digital media and tech expert where she manages Jean Criss Media and CRISSCROSSIntimates from her NJ and NYC based offices as a Media-preneur, Author, Blogger, and Contributor Writer. She is also a Fashion Designer and Breast Cancer Survivor. To learn more about her amazing journey, copies of The Trilogy Series are available in e-book and soft cover. Preview her in the Press, take a Look at the colorful Women’s and Men’s Luxe designs and Listen to Jean here. For media or product inquiries, feel free to contact Jean Criss direct at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 908/247-8443.