Women Inspiring Women: The Right Partners Make All the Difference

Solving your own problem is how most successful businesses get started and is exactly how Amber Gearhart found herself as an entrepreneur. After moving into their first home, Amber was on a mission to find a cover for her toothpaste. Yes, her toothpaste.

“My husband doesn’t like to share his toothpaste so he would write his name on the tube in big black letters,” said Amber. “It was so unattractive and distracting, especially in our clean and organized bathroom.” After searching online and in stores, Amber couldn’t find anything to solve her problem. So, she created her own solution.

TubeCoverz is a decorative silicon sleeve designed to easily slip onto a soft-sided toothpaste tube and fit snugly, giving boring tubes of toothpaste—or tubes with names written in black marker—the style they have been missing. In addition, the sleeves fit 25+ other “tube” products such as sunscreen and personal lotions and when you buy a TubeCoverz, Amber and her team will donate a TubeCoverz to a shelter. “For sleeves sold through October, we are doubling our total donations and sending them to shelters in Texas,” said Amber. “I love that I am able to quickly shift the direction of our philanthropic focus when an area of our country is in need.”

Like many women who consider themselves “accidental entrepreneurs”, Amber has learned a lot of lessons in a short amount of time and was almost “mansplained” out of moving forward. “Male executives and bankers treated me like I had no business being in this space,” said Amber. “It wasn’t until I found a woman-owned manufacturing company that I realized my idea was going to become a reality, and that I, as the founder and CEO, could get it there. The right partners make all the difference.”

Unfortunately, this isn’t an isolated incident for women leaders as they move into more male-dominated industries such as product production, tech, and professional sports. When Amber heard Generation W’s Donna Orender speak at the Female Founders Forum at University of North Florida, she suddenly had an “aha” moment. “As someone who had forged her own road in industries with very few female leaders, Donna was so motivating, “ said Amber. “She encouraged me to not be afraid, to make bigger asks and to have stronger introductions. She made me realize that I didn’t have a ‘cute’ idea, I had a really ‘smart’ idea.”

Amber took Donna’s words to heart and soon sent her an email asking her how she could get more involved in helping women and girls in Jacksonville. “I had no idea how big my tribe would become,” said Amber. “Women innately want to help other women and girls succeed and Donna has not only inspired me with my business but has inspired me to help others along the way.” Toward that goal, Amber seeks out partnerships with other women-owned businesses and she recently partnered with a 15- year-old girl to help her with brand video and social media. “I think that it is awesome to know that a sophomore in high school already has brand experience under her belt.”

Amber is looking forward to continuing her work with young girls by participating in this year’s Generation WOW, set to take place on November 1st at University of North Florida. But, before that, she is busy with TubeCoverz Kickstarter. Launched last week, the Kickstarter is raising funds to help Amber and her team keep prices low while also keeping production in the U.S.A. “Reaching or exceeding our funding goal will let us know for sure that people agree that ‘Made in the USA’ is worth the extra internal cost, and it will also help us expand our product choices,” said Amber. Click here to support the TubeCoverz Kickstarter (they are 32% to goal!).