Posted on September 19 2020
About one year ago, give or take, it was when the idea of Nosy came to me.
I was stuck in the London tube during rush hour. Just getting through the jam-packed crowd of people in Oxford street station was a mission. I looked at my clock and between walking down the steps and taping my card was 15 minutes of pushing and pulling where we were all forced to be inches apart from each other and breathe stagnant air with all sort of particles and viruses.
When I finally made it to the train (obviously just as packed) we were stuck underneath Marble Arch station. They made us get out of the train and wait for a new one to come some 40 minutes later. During that time, I could see the smoke in the air; I could smell the pollution and I kept on thinking how can I be exposing myself to this on a daily basis? What is this doing to my health?
When I got home, I began researching and I couldn't find anything close to a functional alternative.
Face masks where never an option for me because the physics of the product just didn't make sense. Without even having the vocabulary I knew the issues with air leakage. The least bad option I found was these carbon plugs that you could put inside of your nose, but after testing them for a handful of days, I realised that they did not provide enough protection, and a much more robust design was required.
Thats's when I started to research and Nosy began taking shape in my head. It's first name (or more how I described it to few close friends only for fear of being ridiculed) was a "Nose Environment." I spent nights and nights awake thinking of how to make the engineering of the product work; mainly how to attach it to people's noses, and once I found a solution, it was to making clay models, buying our website, and having the courage to dip into my savings to hire our engineering team in December 2019.
We broke ground with our first meeting for Nosy in the beginning of January 2020 and by March we had a semblance of our first prototypes. That's when we shot our Kickstarter video, all in one single day before lock down, so there was no room for error (although we had many).
Since then our entire lives have changed, and the world where Nosy was first created no longer exists.
That's why when we were faced with the choice of continuing Nosy as it was or adapting to our new reality, I made the executive decision to go back to the drawing board. We wanted to create something that is the best for you - now - not what made sense a year ago.
This decision had a number of implications, it meant costs were exponentially higher (everything from more design days to a substantially more complex product to be delivered), and as expected, delay to start manufacturing.
As I type this, we are currently testing the effectiveness of the antiviral coating on the HEPA filter medium with our partner lab and are slotted to begin cutting the tools for Nosy by the end of next week. We also significantly changed Nosy's attachment mechanism in order to make it more user-friendly so now you only have one step when putting Nosy on as opposed to the two steps that were originally required. Lastly, we have changed Nosy's case so you can carry both the antiviral mouth coverage and Nosy in your pocket.
Along this journey we have found a number of partners.
- CHC Product Development is our manufacturer who are based in the Netherlands with factories in China. They are financing all of the tooling and the first batch of Nosys. Initially I was hesitant to go into production so early on in China simply because it would be too much for us to handle a supply chain abroad as we were launching a brand in Europe and the US, but CHC is joining us for the long-haul and taking care of all of our supply chain needs. They have over 20 years of experience producing medical devices and the team is just great to work with!
- We have a world renowned partner lab in Switzerland who are helping us apply their textile technology to our filters and mouth coverages. Once the testing process is finalised, I'll share more details about them with you. I'm personally still humbled that they decided to work with us as some of their clients include Speedo and Adidas.
- We have had two strategic angel investors officially join Nosy this week. They each add significant value to Nosy not just because of their network, but expertise in PR and hardware distribution. Their investment is giving us room to breathe (no pun intended), and allowing us to restart our marketing engine in advance of Nosy being available for purchase in the end of the year.
Our timeline for delivery of Nosys remains similar to my last Kickstarter update; we are targeting the end of November to have NosyX complete, and will be ready to ship by the beginning of December.
Lastly, I had an interview with BBC Tech two weeks ago, and we will be featured on Brooklyn Fashion Week this coming October (I'll share both with you when they are out). We are going full steam ahead, and working on all cylinders. Some of it you will not see or hear until I'm able to share the results with you, but trust me - Nosy is getting big!
Be Healthy. Be Bold. Be Nosy.
Carina - Nosy's Creator