If you have a nickel allergy, you assume all of the world understands this challenge, but I was totally ignorant until a customer opened my eyes. I was working at an event to introduce our product to retailers when a young woman and mom, shopping for their children’s clothing store, stopped to chat. I enthusiastically and thoroughly went through the features and benefits of The Sleek Belt® and our retail offering. They shared that, while our product wasn’t a match for their business, the daughter pleaded for the opportunity to purchase a single belt. When she explained why I instantly provided her with a belt.
Nickel Allergy Pain & Problems
She explained she was plagued with the realities of living with a nickel allergy. While I had heard of this issue with pierced ears, I didn’t realize a nickel allergy also meant belt buckles are often made with nickel alloy, and when in contact with the tummy, cause irritation and pain.
The young woman shyly revealed her tummy which showed residual scarring from the wounds caused by exposure to her traditional belt buckles. When I saw her scars, it made me wince because it looked like this tender area had seen more than its share of pain.
She said she avoided belts and as a result, was in the vicious yank-up-your-pants struggle. You know, when you start the day and your pants are fitting fine, but as the lycra or spandex in them relaxes with wear, the pants start sagging and dragging and you have to do the pants dance. Grabbing either side of the waistband and pulling up while you squirm to get those pants in place. You know the one. This young woman wanted – needed – the buckle-free (and therefore nickel free) function and comfort of The Sleek Belt®.
One Belt at a Time
I try to walk this path of life with compassion and respect for others, as we never know the trials and challenges that people face. Struggles are often hidden because we put on that “fake it till you make it” happy face or keep the armor up with a sad or mad warning face. This young woman opened my eyes to the realities of living with the pain and discomfort of a nickel allergy.
The next day of the retail sales event, the mother and daughter team again passed my booth. Our newest customer came over to me smiling and proudly flashed her Sleek Belt and I felt the joy of knowing we were making this world better, one belt at a time.