Originally posted to Facebook on June 10, 2020
This week's #WCW is Pamela Cooper, co-founder and CEO of InCare. InCare helps people who are suffering from neurological differences (autism, brain trauma and mood disorders) with skill-building IoT (Internet of Things) products that lessen the severity of their symptoms. This company's solution is to provide wearable IoT products that create the sensation of a hug to calm a person down when experiencing stress and anxiety. Their wearables connect to an app that collects biometric data, manages support systems and teaches therapy skills.
Website: www.wearincare.com IG: @wearincare
Read on for a Q&A with Pamela about this innovative fusion of fashion, technology, and therapy!
Q: What inspired you to start InCare Brand? How did it begin?
A: I first started the idea while I was a junior in college at Parsons School of Design. I had recently lost someone I loved to their mental health and had a bit of an identity crisis. I felt lost and had a lot of survivor guilt, which is when I asked myself, "What if design could do more? What if it could save someone's life?" I made a jacket intended for the person I lost, based around his schizophrenia and the symptoms he experienced. This jacket could keep him safe, turn into a sleeping bag, provide safety whenever he wandered off, and had an extended hood with a meditative pattern to keep his mind at ease when he was going through psychosis. I thought about the jacket being something that could take care of someone when no one was readily available and that's where they could always be "in care." That's how it began.
Q: Tell us about the intersection of art and mental health in your company-- how do you use your skills to support your consumers?
A: We combine design and health to become one. We make wearables that help you better manage you. We've started with a compression wearable that automatically compresses whenever you're getting stressed or anxious. This is based on the principle of Deep Pressure Touch, which is known to release serotonin in the sense of a swaddle or an embrace. We've automated that and made a product that is fashionable, inconspicuous and is not stigmatizing.
Q: What other new products are you working on right now?
A: We have not launched our EaseVest yet but have sold masks to help us fund our company. With a mask you are getting a premium handmade quality which has the highest of material standards as it is antimicrobial, UV protected, breathable, and machine washable.
Q: What does growth look like for your organization/ mission?
A: Our mission is to create more wearables that give individuals the ability to manage themselves. We're looking to reach as many people as we can and make various IoT products down the line. We have been a part of several accelerator programs and are looking to get enough funds to project our company forward into sales. We also plan to partner with medical organizations and specialty schools in order to reach more people and have our vest calm them down with a touch.
Q: What else would you like people to know?
A: We are getting ready for our testing and are looking for various people with Neurological Differences to join our trials! Please email me if you're in the NY area- firstname.lastname@example.org
More about Pamela:
Pamela Cooper is a Solution-Based Designer living in New York. She recently graduated Parsons the New School of Design in May 2018 majoring in Fashion Design. During her time at Parsons she won First Place at The New School’s Health Care Hack with her team’s App made to help Chronic Illnesses using Positive Psychology and Support Systems. She won the AARP honorable mention award for her Wingspan Technology Vest that can help anyone from Limited Arm Mobility to Bed-Ridden Patients put clothing on. She worked alongside the United Nations and HELA to make leak proof underwear for people in the DADAAB refugee camp. She’s also won several awards and funding in the lingerie industry.
Pamela’s focus now involves finding affordable solutions to the mental health crisis in the United States. Her ultimate goal with this project is to give the wearer their independence back by giving them skill-building products that will help lessen severity of their symptoms. Pamela believes design could go beyond the mere surface and help mitigate many world issues.