Baking in the sun and soaking up a sunburn with aloe and lotion is about as cool as chain smoking. This is why Anne Botica and Monique Moore, best friends turned business partners, decided to launch SPF clothing line Mott 50 (named after their adorable Soho apartment).
Yes – there are other SPF clothing lines out there, however, they are more fit for an outdoorsman ready to kayak (yes, judgement) than a sun-conscious fashionista. Read on, apply that SPF and get shopping just in time for a July 4th sun-fulled weekend!
Quick Tips for Your Skin!
- Tans fade, wrinkles stay
- Apply every 2-4 hours
- Take samples from your dermatologist to save money on SPF!
- Download iPhone App SpotCheck
- SPF Powder for your head if you’re not wearing a hat!
- SPF must-have ingredients: UVA and UVB protection
- Saint Tropez self-tanner
How did best friends from college turn a conversation into a business? We started talking about the need for a fashionable line of sun protective clothing during the summer of ‘09. As we researched, our ‘inspiration’ binder and passion quickly started to grow. Our apartment on Mott 50 became Mott 50 HQ.
We spent countless evenings and weekends fleshing out the necessary components to start the business. Eventually, the necessary components started to come together and we decided to take the plunge!
What was the number one driving force to get this off the ground? Passion! We really believe in the concept. Mott 50 also gives us the opportunity to combine multiple things we love – fashion, marketing, charitable involvement, etc.
Leaving your corporate job for a start-up is gutsy. Were you terrified?
MONIQUE: To be honest, I think I was naively optimistic. That excitement for the project propelled me forward. It’s been a ton of hard work, probably more than I realized, but also very rewarding.
ANNE: I felt like we had nothing to lose. Nothing felt scary until we were in way too deep to back out. Do it while you are young! We have learned more in the past two years than any job could ever have taught us.
How did you educate yourselves on the products and business to make sure you were experts? We worked with a production expert that assisted us in sourcing the necessary components. Making a garment from start to finish is sort of like putting together a puzzle – fabric (with UV protection), buttons, zippers, labels, sewing, etc – it takes a combination of skill, research, and patience.
In your research, what was the most shocking thing you learned about clothing and it’s lack of SPF? Most people simply don’t know that harmful UV rays get through normal clothing (and glass). Although you aren’t burning, the more stealthy UVA (aging & skin cancer causing) rays still reach your skin! In our ideal world, all clothing would have a UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) on the label so consumers are aware.
The jersey pieces (speaking from personal use) are luscious! Where are they from/manufactured? Our bamboo jersey is lightweight and breathable with just enough spandex. They are produced both overseas and domestically; we try to do as much production in the USA as possible.
Mothers and daughters are both Mott 50 cheerleaders. Who is your target demographic? Our target demo is quite large, women 18-64+. Our collection consists of great basics and easy-to-wear styles that can span various age groups depending on how you accessorize! You are never too old, or too young, to start caring about your skin.
How has your skin and sunning habits changed since Mott 50? We love that pale is in!
MONIQUE: I unfortunately have not always been careful with my skin. Seeing fine-lines develop was a wake-up call! I quickly became obsessed with staying out of the sun. As I always say, “tans fade, wrinkles stay.” However, I have been able to reverse some of the lines & spots with product and diligent coverage.
ANNE: My mother has been crazy about sun protection since we were young, so I’ve been pretty careful most of my life. However, the past five years I’ve become obsessed with anti-aging products, as well as sunscreen.
What has been the single most exciting moment for Mott 50 since launching?
MONIQUE: I still marvel when I’m walking down the street or at the beach and see someone sporting Mott 50.
What is your go-to SPF (head to toe)? Do you carry different products for different body parts?
SPF and skincare can get pricey. How do you advice women on a budget to care for their skin? It’s true, especially if you use it properly by re-applying ever 2-4 hours. There are great brands at CVS and Duane Read that don’t break the bank, just make sure they offer broad-spectrum protection (UVA and UVB protection)! Also, ask your dermatologist for samples! And remember, investing in sun protection could save you a lot in the future.
What is your go-to Mott 50 product this summer for women in their 20s? The Blanch maxi dress, Billy straw hat, and Melanie cardigan (to wear over your swim suit by day or to dinner for warmth at night). Also, younger girls are starting to rock the Montauk and Malibu rashguards which is really cool!
You’re both super active. What’s your workout plan this summer?
MONIQUE: I’m currently training for a sprint triathlon. I’ve really enjoyed adding biking and swimming to my workout schedule. I also love yoga.
ANNE: I run everyday, but hate to stretch, so I mix in Pilates a couple days a week.
What song are you listening on repeat while running?
MONIQUE: I have a reggae mix that I love!!
ANNE: Hardcore rap!
What’s your go-to summer snack?
ANNE: Fruit that is in season like cherries, watermelon & raspberries.
What’s your most sacred beauty trick that we must know about?
MONIQUE: Saint Tropez self-tanner! It gives the perfect fake, yet natural-looking, glow
ANNE: Aquaphor is amazing for everything! I use it under my eyes at night, on dry skin and on my lips. Never leave home without it!