Dallas Twins, 17, launches clothing and accessories brand UPwords to ‘bring joy’ »Dallas Innovates

Earlier this month, the CDC warned of an acceleration teen mental health crisis, with more than 40% of teenagers saying they feel “constantly sad or hopeless”. Girls were twice as likely as boys to report mental health issues, the CDC said, with more than 25% saying they had “seriously considered” attempting suicide during the pandemic.

Can a fashion brand help reverse this worrying trend? Two Dallas-based 17-year-olds are trying to do just that with today’s launch of UPwords, a new life-affirming apparel and accessories company.

Fraternal twins Sydney and Shea Hinckley say they started their business “to change the way young women see themselves”.

“Positivity and an uplifting message”

[Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

“During Covid, we wanted to find a way to bring positivity and an uplifting message to our peers,” co-founder Sydney Hinckley said in a statement. “We started looking for products that affirmed us and we couldn’t find anything. That’s when we decided to create UPwords.

The startup e-commerce site includes caps that say “DO GOOD”, socks that say “I am crushing it”, hoodies with “I hope something good happens to you today” on the back, t-shirts with very colorful fonts saying “see well in all things”, a sweatshirt that says “you are enough” and many more designs and affirmations. A range of home products, jewelry and beauty accessories are also available.

“Our mission is for everyone to be surrounded by uplifting messages that resonate with them and ultimately bring them joy,” Sydney added. “All of our products are beautiful, affordable and encouraging.”

“Unprecedented social pressures”

The Young Founders believe teens and young adults face “unprecedented social pressures” that compromise their mental and emotional well-being. They say they have studied the science of abundant thought and the positive impact of “self-talk”. From pop culture to social media feeds, they recognize an unrelenting message: “You are not enough.”

Sydney and Shea aim to change that narrative with the messages they place on a wide range of affirming products. The sweatshirt below from their e-commerce site clearly states their main theme.

“Thoughts determine your reality”

[Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

“Your thoughts determine your reality because they are powerful enough to affect how you feel about yourself and the decisions you make,” co-founder Shea Hinckley said in the statement. “UPwords is about bringing positive affirmations into your daily life. You are constantly reminded of your worth.

Here is an overview of the most vital products from the UPwords site:

[Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

[Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

[Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

UPwords journal “beautifully messy”. [Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

The UPwords site also offers inspirational stickers. [Photo: Sydney and Shea Designs]

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