About a year ago, Leila Quraishi launched Nudesox, a women’s athleisure sock brand in five shades of nude. The purpose of Nudesox is to blend in with your skin so that your socks do not take away from the “look” of your outfit.
Since its launch, Nudesox has been featured in several publications and is the first “nude” sock brand on the market. Leila is currently a Junior at The University of Southern California, and she is studying Communication and Entrepreneurship.
Q: Why did you choose your present industry at this time?
The greatest products are solutions to persisting problems, or products that make life simpler, happier, or more efficient. I personally do not like when my socks show because they tend to ruin the “look” of my outfit. I also do not like wearing no show socks because they are usually uncomfortable, slip off, and do not even cover my entire foot. The global sock market is estimated to be around $36 billion dollars. Socks are an essential wardrobe item, since we wear them nearly every day (or you should!). So, given that the average human owns many pairs and wears them on most days, socks are a great business because they are bought in multiples. As a business, it is important to be cost-effective and make sure that you are giving value to your customers, while generating revenue through high margins. There is no product like Nudesox on the market, and I am hoping to expand the brand globally.
The greatest products are solutions to persisting problems, or products that make life simpler, happier, or more efficient.
~ Leila Quraishi
Q: What is the best/worst moment you can remember in your career?
The worst moment for me so far was when I first started my business and no manufacturer was willing to work with me. It is hard to land a manufacturer as a start-up, since most of them deal with large purchase orders and existing, well-known brands. It is rare to find people to give you the time of day when you are just starting out because you are considered a risk. I was very lucky to have met my current manufacturer. We have a great relationship and if I hadn’t been rejected so many times, then I would not have had this opportunity to work with the right manufacturer.
The best moment while running my business would definitely be when I first launched Nudesox and sent emails to top magazine editors to feature the socks. I was pitching my product and honestly didn’t expect to hear back from the publications. Within an hour of sending my email, I received praise from several publications, including a top editor at Cosmopolitan Magazine and a feature in HelloGiggles (acquired by Time, Inc.), which has 11 million monthly visitors. I was so happy that other women in the fashion industry understood my product and loved it. It was the validation that I needed to know that I have a business worth pursuing. It is really hard to earn a spot in any media channel, and since I run my business on my own, I am proud of myself for any media coverage that I am able to get without spending any money.
Q: Who is your role model or hero?
My hero is Tony Robbins. I am obsessed with his words and live by many of his mottos. Listening to Tony Robbins speak, healed me in many ways and allowed me to grow past hardships. My favorite quotes from him include: "Why live an ordinary life, when you can live an extraordinary one" and "whatever you hold in your mind on a consistent basis is exactly what you will experience in your life."
Q: What is your favorite book?
I usually listen to podcasts or audio books; however, my favorite read would have to be The Power of Kabbalah, which is about “the secrets of the universe and the meaning of our lives.” As someone who does not identify with a religion, it is comforting for me to connect with the spiritual teachings of Kabbalah, which is an ancient Jewish teaching. This book will seriously change your view of life.
Q: Do you use any specific method or system to run daily operations of your business?
I do not have a specific method to run daily operations of my business, since my schedule is always changing with school. Running a business alone makes it easier in a way, since I can choose to do work at 3am if I desire. I do not have a set time period when I work. I go with the flow of the day and make sure everything gets done in its given time frame. Since I am a full time student, it is hard to balance my day and know how much time I need to allot to each aspect of my life. So, I just handle one task at a time. I answer work emails in between classes and have business meetings after school. When I receive a purchase order, I immediately fill out the necessary information and have the socks shipped out the next business day. As long as I am on task and on time with my business operations, I think everything runs pretty smoothly.
When I receive a purchase order, I immediately fill out the necessary information and have the socks shipped out the next business day.
~ Leila Quraishi
Q: Looking back - if you could advise a younger version of yourself to do something different - what would it be?
I am only 21 years old so I will be advising my future older self! I want to learn to let go of things that no longer serve me and be confident in the decisions that I make. I put so much emotion behind my actions, and that is not a good idea in business. So I am advising my future self to detach my feelings from decisions I make for my business.
So I am advising my future self to detach my feelings from decisions I make for my business.
~ Leila Quraishi