Sasha Hlavinka founded Perpetual Shade because she always had problems sleeping. Bright lights hindered her sleep as a child and continued to plague her during her high school and college years. She tried many different styles of masks but found that they were never quite right. Though most would block out the light, they were very uncomfortable due to poor design. While studying fashion and marketing at the University of Rhode Island, she decided to source luxurious, high quality fabric and produce her own sleep mask. After countless requests from friends wanting their own masks, Sasha was inspired to create Perpetual Shade. Learn more about Sasha in our interview with her below.
What inspired you to start your business?
“I suffered from a sleep issue as a child and could not find a comfortable sleep mask. I decided to create my own and found that it was the most comfortable option. After encouragement from friends and family, I decided to start Perpetual Shade.”
What advice would you give to an aspiring entrepreneur or student?
“Make sure that you are 100% obsessed with what your are trying to create. If you have any doubts about your business/product do not move forward until you do not. It literally does not matter what you are trying to sell as long as you absolutely love your product. If you truly believe in what you are doing, you will be successful.”
How has social media influenced or helped your business? Do you have an example?
“Social media has been an enormous part of building Perpetual Shade. We focus mainly on Instagram and found incredible success with that platform. The biggest impact we've had thus far on Social media is the time when Chrissy Teigen posted a picture wearing our 'Don't Worry Be Yonce' sleep mask. We had no idea that she was going to post ( which is actually amazing) and the results were incredible.”
Who do you admire and why?
“I admire my mother the most because she has no fear. She immigrated to America without any money, spoke no English and still created a successful and happy life. She did this at the age of 18. I always think about her whenever I feel afraid and it pushes me forward.”
What is next for you and your business?
“We are working on promoting our Sleep Leisure line which is a great compliment to our sleep masks.”
What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment thus far?
“I think my greatest accomplishment is starting my business in the first place. I had no idea what I was doing and still managed to create a great product that people love.”