dylan creator crystal truong talks break ups, women entrepreneurship and her fave panti
As an independent creative writer, I write for lots of clients. dylan is my favorite. My creative direction is valued, I have the freedom to chose what I write about, and I get to write about issues that are important to me (because they're important to all women). Not only is the founder, Crystal, my personal friend, she is also building a brand on values that I really love and support.
For this month's blog, I wanted to her to share what her motivations were behind creating this amazing brand, what it's like being a female entrepreneur, and, of course, what her favorite panti is.
A Convo with dylan creator Crystal Truong
Kristen: Hey babe, we’re just gonna take this nice and natural, cool?
Kristen: So tell me, what were you doing with your life before dylan? I mean, I know, but tell everyone else.
Crystal: I was working as a freelance stylist so I did a lot of shopping for other people, organizing wardrobes, packing, photoshoots...yeah.
Kristen: And how were you feeling about your career situation at that time?
Crystal: It was great, but I didn't feel like I was impacting enough people. I wanted to make a bigger difference with a larger audience with my work.
Kristen: So what was the moment when you decided you wanted to create dylan underwear?
Crystal: The moment I decided I wanted to create dylan underwear was actually, this is crazy, it was actually when I broke up with Kirk. Do you remember when I dated Kirk?
Kristen: I remember talking to you on the phone about that. I remember exactly where I was.
Crystal: Yeah. I remember going through that relationship and realizing that I wanted something for myself. I just wanted something that I could call mine. I wanted to redirect my focus on something that I was passionate about rather than on a relationship. So right after we broke up, I pulled out a notebook and I started writing down ideas. And I went over to Sherica’s, and we started talking about it. I don’t know something just like just clicked for me in that moment, and I just went ‘Okay, this is it for me. This is where I’m going to put all of my focus and my attention.’
Kristen: So cool. And what was it about the end of that relationship that made you want something of your own?
Crystal: I think because when I was in that relationship I felt like I was never accepted in this person’s family dynamic or work dynamic. I felt a sense of not-belonging, and I just didn’t want to feel like that ever again. I felt like the only way to do that was to create something that was mine, that was me. So I created my own sense of belonging.
Kristen: And you’re also doing that for other women through the brand.
Crystal: Yes, through the brand I want to give space for other women creatives to create. I like bringing other women creatives on to the team, like yourself, to be a part of something bigger and to make a difference in how we as women entrepreneurs and creators are represented. We’re working on building a community of people who want to support and empower women entrepreneurs.
Kristen: I love it, and I’m happy to be a part of it. How have you seen this come to life through dylan?
Crystal: My favorite part of building the brand is the photoshoots. Because I’ve been on sets before while styling, I know how impactful these settings can be. I usually have an all-female cast because the energy and vibration is always high and infectious. Everyone, from the models to the make up artist, is empowered, and you can feel it. We’re dancing, laughing, and creating the whole time. I make sure to keep the sets professional but fun. Transparency is important to me so I have this vibe reflected throughout the photos and marketing campaigns.
Kristen: So why did you choose a company about underwear to achieve all these goals?
Crystal: It’s the first thing we put on in the morning. I believe that if we feel really good and confident and comfortable in the first thing we put on, then it’s a trickle effect to putting on a whole outfit you really enjoy and it kind of allows you to just go out into the world with a different perspective or headspace and just feel more comfortable and confident within yourself. So I just wanted a product to empower women, and I felt like underwear was a great place to start.
Kristen: Mmm, I love how you put that, that it’s a trickle-down effect starting with the first thing we put on. Also, I was wearing an old thong the other day that was literally falling off underneath my new dress. I didn’t feel confident or sexy - I felt awkward and worried that my drawers were falling down. So it’s totally true. I threw those undies away.
Crystal: Oh yeah, it’s totally true.
Kristen: Okay, so you wanted to start at the start, with the first thing we put on. Why these four styles?
Crystal: I chose the four styles that I would personally want in my underwear collection. So the LOVE ON TOP HIGH WAISTED THONG was a little bit more of an innovative style. We’ve all moved to a move high rise look, we’ve moved past the low-rise thing as a generation. So I just thought that creating a thong that complimented that style would be really effective. I also just thought that the silhouette was so flattering. So that’s one of my favorites.
Kristen: Yas, I love it. Honestly, it makes so much sense.
Crystal: Yeah, so the second style is the DRNK IN LOVE CHEEKY BIKINI BRIEF. I wanted to create an underwear that was comfortable but also sexy. It’s like the upgrade from the Hanes traditional granny panty. It’s seamless except for the center back seam to give it a little more…
Kristen: Booty shape!
Crystal: Yes, booty shape. It also has the high-leg cut which is super flattering, so it’s just the upgrade from your traditional granny panty, period day underwear.
Kristen: Something you actually feel good about wearing, even if you don’t feel great.
Crystal: Exactly. Then, there’s the CRZY IN LOVE G STRING. And that’s the one that I honestly wear the most, just because it’s so effortless. You can wear it with anything, you don’t have to worry about any lines. It’s really comfortable and it feels like you have no underwear on at all.
Crystal: Then, there’s the LOVE HAPPY HIGH WAISTED COMPRESSION SHORT which is probably my all-time favorite. It’s just great under dresses, especially a bodycon dress. I wanted this style because I felt like a lot of women didn’t know what to wear under a bodycon dress, because no matter what you do you’re going to see a line.
So the compression short is really high-waisted, it comes right underneath your boobs. It’s really flattering, and if you were going to wear a bodycon dress you don’t have to worry that your vagina is going to fly out anywhere. Everything is so protected, so I love that.
I also wanted it to be a short. So I put a gusset in it, and it’s not see-through at all, so if you want to you can wear them as shorts, you can work out in them.
Kristen: Oh, really? I didn’t know that! That’s super cool.
Crystal: Yeah, so I think these four styles are just the most classic and basic. They fit in any clothing style you want.
Kristen: It covers everything that you need and gives you extra because you can wear one as a short.
Kristen: So, if you had to choose just one favorite, which one would you choose?
Crystal: Damn. That’s such a hard question. Honestly, I’m in love with the g-string right now. I don’t know if it’s because it’s summer and I’m wearing a lot of shorts and they’re tight. I just need less. I just want less on my body. Anything that feels like less.
Kristen: Awesome, and I think you’re allowed to change your mind depending on the time. Maybe it’s a seasonal favorite thing.
Crystal: Yeah, that’s right. The g-string is the summer favorite.
Kristen: So, we're giving everyone 30% off the CRAZY IN LOVE G STRING for the next 48 hours, right?
Crystal: Yep, just add it to your cart and you'll see the discount applied at checkout.
Kristen: Tell me what’s been your biggest learning throughout this whole process?
Crystal: Hmm. I think that making decisions has been such a learning process for me. And not only making decisions but really standing behind the decisions I make. And I don’t know if it’s being a woman and doing this but when you decide to make a business that you can call you own, a lot of people have opinions about that, that they want to put into your ear about certain things that you do or should do.
And I think that in order to stay true to your brand, you kind of have to tune those opinions out and really believe that the things you’re doing to move forward is really true to you. You have to stand really hard behind it, you know?
So, I think that’s been a really huge lesson. Everything from what posts I’m going to post to what stitching I want the manufacturer to use. It’s a little scary but I think the more I do it, the more confident I feel about saying what I want.
Kristen: That’s really cool. I feel the same way about my writing business, really. Like I used to ask people for advice a lot, and I just kind of stopped eventually. Not because I didn’t respect people’s opinions, but just because there’s a voice inside of me that tells me what I really feel is right and I notice that when I do what I really feel is right, then everything works out better. Everything seems to go better, not just around that one decision. It’s like the vibe of my business is just me, so it works.
Crystal: Yeah, it’s just so important to stay true to you and your brand and your intuition. Ultimately, we do know what we want for our companies. And it’s great to get advice from people, especially from people who’ve been there. But at the end of the day, you’re making your own decisions.
Kristen: Yeah, you have to be the one ultimately making those decisions, otherwise it’s not your brand anymore.
Crystal: Yeah, exactly.
Kristen: So, what do you see for the future of dylan?
Crystal: I really just want to keep creating with this brand. So, a bodysuit in the near future.
Kristen: Love it.
Crystal: Yeah, and I really want to design a top that’s flattering on all women. Like from big boobs to medium boobs to small boobs, I just want to create one top that works for everyone.
And I really want to move over to the menswear side too. I think if I could create a panti that men could feel really empowered in too, I think that’s super fair to give that to them too.
I think that I would love for dylan to be a household name. When you think of a panti that you can rely on, you think of dylan. I know a lot of people who wear the same undershirt. They know that they can go to Hanes and buy that pack of five undershirts. I would love that for dylan, like ‘Okay, it’s time to buy new underwear. dylan.’
So, I think keeping things consistent and not saturated will allow me to get to that space one day.
Kristen: I think so too, babe. I love what you’re putting out there.
Crystal: Thank you so much.
Kristen: I see big things.
Crystal: You’re the best. I honestly have such an amazing support team around me. I don’t think it would be possible to move forward if I didn’t have you and everyone else encouraging me to keep pushing. So thank you, I appreciate you so much.
Kristen: You’re welcome. I’m so thankful to you too. Thanks for having me on the team.
Crystal: Oh, of course.
Kristen: Okay, so one last question. Why the name dylan?
Crystal: Okay, so the first name we came up with was Underair because I just wanted to create an underwear that felt like air, that felt like nothing. So, I brought it up to Jimena, and she was like, ‘That kind of sounds like a fart.’
Crystal: I was like, ‘I do not want my brand to sound like a fart.’ So I started playing with names and putting them marketing stuff to see how they would look. And I just thought, ‘Okay, so this woman who wears these is in touch with her feminine energy, but also in touch with her masculine energy. I want my target to be a super powerful woman. So, my younger brother’s name is Dylan and I’ve always loved his name. I love the way it’s spelt - D-Y-L-A-N, and I put it into the marketing and it just looked right. I don’t know how to explain it, it just fit. I think it’s both masculine and feminine, I love that it’s easy to remember, everyone can pronounce it. I just wanted something that stuck with you.
Kristen: Yeah, I love it too. I think it feels right. I love the explanation that it’s both masculine and feminine. I think that really speaks to the core of the brand.
Want to hear more from Crystal? Read more about the creation of dylan here.
Written with love by Kristen Koester-Smith of copybykristen.com, providing copywriting and storytelling for brands of integrity.