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Women In Wellness: Tiffany Uretsky Of Downlinens On The Five Lifestyle Tweaks That Will Help Support People’s Journey Towards Better Wellbeing

An Interview With Candice Georgiadis

Pay attention to the details, they can really make or break the whole operation. At the very least, doing this from the beginning will likely help you avoid a few costly mistakes down the road.

As a part of my series about the women in wellness, I had the pleasure of interviewing Tiffany Uretsky.

Tiffany Uretsky grew up in Southern California and began working in her family’s down feather business right out of school. While cutting her teeth behind the scenes at Allied Feather and Down, she learned a lot about sustainability, quality and integrity of product production. After working through her own personal health scare, Tiffany developed a whole new appreciation for the impact that quality rest and recovery can have on the body. With that in mind, she set out on a mission to develop a direct-to-consumer lifestyle brand that would make optimal health and wellbeing more accessible for all by offering quality bedding and sleep products. Downlinens was launched in 2009.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Our readers would love to “get to know you” better. Can you share your “backstory” with us?

Sure — so, my father started Allied Feather and Down in 1987 while he was in grad school. Over the years, the business grew to become the top supplier of down feather products to major retailers and big-name brands. I began working in the family business right out of school and learned a lot about sustainability, responsible sourcing, and quality production. During this time, I was able to take over retail where I recognized a need for a quality, direct-to-consumer product line. A lifestyle wellness brand that would make quality bedding and sleep products more accessible. After facing my own health scare in 2009, I became even more driven to share the science of sleep and that is when Downlinens was born. Quality rest and recovery for the body is the key to living a life of optimal health & wellness, and it all starts in the bedroom with our sleep. I truly believe that quality wellness products shouldn’t be reserved for a select few but should be available at a price point that makes them more easily accessible.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career? What were the main lessons or takeaways from that story?

I can remember getting in the weeds plenty of times, and just spending late nights in the warehouse — that’s when I learned, all that glitters isn’t gold! There is this misconception that if you own or run your own business, you must be living some glamorous lifestyle, but that is simply not the case. A more fitting adage might be the one about working 40 hours a week for someone else, versus working 70 hours a week for yourself. It may not always be glamorous, but if you have a passion for the work you’re doing, it feels a little less like “work”.

Can you share a story about the biggest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

There have been plenty of bumps along the way, but a major lesson I’ve learned is that the devil is in the details. Especially when it comes to inventory, supply chain and order fulfillment — with so many tiny details, the possibility of making a mistake is pretty high. Over the years, I think I’ve learned to anticipate what the customer might want or need and pay close attention to their overall buying experience. The little things can be a deciding factor when it comes to whether or not someone will continue to do business with you.

Let’s jump to our main focus. When it comes to health and wellness, how is the work you are doing helping to make a bigger impact in the world?

Well, we truly believe that true health & wellness starts with restorative sleep. It really is a ripple effect, so being your best self, and having the best day possible actually starts the night before. There is a ton of science to support this idea, but at the end of the day, the main takeaway is that lack of quality sleep can be detrimental to your health. By creating a direct-to-consumer lifestyle brand, using the same high-quality products as our parent company, and offering it at an affordable price point, we believe we’re making optimal health and wellness more accessible.

Can you share your top five “lifestyle tweaks” that you believe will help support people’s journey towards better wellbeing? Please give an example or story for each.

  1. Move your body. Even if it’s just for a 10-minute walk after dinner (which is great for digestion, by the way) it’s a great place to start. The increased blood flow is great for muscles, mental clarity and even helps the body enter recovery mode at night.
  2. Spend time in nature. There is something truly grounding about being outdoors. The fresh air, the natural elements, the calming of the nervous system — it’s all good for you.
  3. Limit screen time. Whether it’s social media or time spent watching the news, studies have shown that spending too much time online can majorly impact anxiety levels. Do yourself a favor and simply log off, especially in the hours leading up to bedtime. Instead, maybe opt for a journaling practice before bedtime. Brain dumping is a great way to clear our minds of all the clutter and de-stress before we go to sleep.
  4. Rest and recovery. Allowing your body sufficient time to rest and recover every night is imperative to our wellbeing. Make sure you’re giving your body plenty of sleep, specifically, quality sleep. Have a healthy bedtime routine, even something simple like stretching or 10 minutes of restorative yoga and deep breathing.
  5. On that note, support your health and wellness with quality bedding and sleep products. Knowing the impact that sleep, or lack thereof, can have on the body, we know how important good sleep is for our mental and physical health. You can’t pour from an empty cup and running on empty all day can have long-term, harmful effects on our wellbeing.

If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of wellness to the most amount of people, what would that be?

That’s sort of a two-pronged answer for me, but I would choose to focus on sustainability and mental health. In business, as well as in my personal life, I’ve seen how both can have an impact on our overall wellness. Sustainability, whether it be in product production or aiming to lead a more sustainable lifestyle at home, can give way to peace of mind and better mental health overall. Knowing that we’re doing our part to be part of the solution, rather than part of the problem, is a great feeling.

What are your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started” and why?

  1. Pay attention to the details, they can really make or break the whole operation. At the very least, doing this from the beginning will likely help you avoid a few costly mistakes down the road.
  2. Implement systems and processes early on, even if this means hiring an administrative person. Many of us get into business because we have a passion for something, but that doesn’t mean you’re going to be great at keeping up with your books, etc.
  3. You’re going to need social media, so don’t try and fight it. Understanding how and where to connect with your audience will allow you to add the most value to your online community. Be available, be engaging and be transparent.
  4. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. It’s impossible to know everything, running a business is a constantly evolving process. Look to those who have come before you, recognize your weaknesses and surround yourself with folks who counter that, while also complimenting your strengths.
  5. Be open to learning! You will never stop evolving, neither will your business. There is always going to be something new to learn or implement, so be open to all possibilities.

Sustainability, veganism, mental health and environmental changes are big topics at the moment. Which one of these causes is dearest to you, and why?

I would say sustainability for business, and mental health for personal life. Our mission at Downlinens has always been to provide quality down products and our parent company Allied Feather and Down really paved the way in sustainable down sourcing; ultimately, setting the industry standard. We continue to live by that on the direct-to-consumer side. In my personal life, I would say mental health has become a really important focus for me. Between running a business and trying to maintain my own optimal health & wellness, I’ve had to make time for prioritizing mental health!

What is the best way our readers can follow you online?

Instagram: @downlinens

Pinterest: pinterest.com/downlinens

Email Newsletter: Subscribe at downlinens.com

Thank you for these fantastic insights!

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In-depth Interviews with Authorities in Business, Pop Culture, Wellness, Social Impact, and Tech. We use interviews to draw out stories that are both empowering and actionable.

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Candice Georgiadis

Candice Georgiadis

Candice Georgiadis is an active mother of three as well as a designer, founder, social media expert, and philanthropist.

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