The most decorated track and field athlete of all time, Allyson Felix, recently launched her very own women’s lifestyle brand for women known as Saysh.
Posing as one of the most decorated Olympians of all time and the only female track and field athlete to earn six Olympic gold medals, Allyson Felix’s journey as a champion was not always golden. In 2019, the track star parted ways publicly with sportswear giant Nike as the company possessed a strict maternity policy when it came to their sponsored athletes. Felix shared in an Instagram post, “I was told to know my place. That runners should just run, that it’s just business.” She would train at wee hours of the morning while she was pregnant in order to hide her pregnancy from the company. She was terrified to “stop running” as most female athletes are placed under the impression that motherhood ruins careers as companies assume women are unable to balance the two lifestyles.
Following the breakup with Nike, Allyson Felix was unable to secure any other deals with footwear brands which resulted in zero racing shoe sponsorships for this year’s Olympics. These obstacles only added fuel to Felix’s burning desire for change. She quickly realized she needed to use her voice to bring awareness to the biggest issue regarding female athletes: gender inequality. Instead of continuously asking for change, she decided to be the change and launch her very own brand. Thus, Saysh was born.
Saysha is a lifestyle brand that develops sportswear products for women, by women. As a result of her receiving no sponsorships for racing spikes, she decided to create her own and launch them as the first products of the brand. Dubbed as the Saysha One, the lightweight sneaker is crafted with woven jacquard and microsuede fabrics to be breathable and molded to fit the shape of the female foot. A subtle striped design graces the upper, inspired by the lines of track lanes and the classic wrap dress which has solidified itself in a woman’s wardrobe as a flattering and staple garment. Ultimately, the Saysh One sets out to be a woman’s go-to shoe for any occasion from work to play. Complete with perfectly snug laces and a supportive heel piece, the shoe presents itself in three colorways including blue, black and white for the price of $150 (available for pre-order here).
Like we said, Saysh is a lifestyle brand and it plans to offer more than just products. It will also host a community-based initiative called the Saysh Collective, a safe place for women to share their thoughts and voice their opinions amongst other like-minded women. Membership includes early access to future releases, networking opportunities, curated workouts, and much more. You can sign up to become a member for $10 a month or $150 a year (annual membership includes a free pair fo the Saysh Ones).
In her open letter on Instagram, Allyson Felix expresses: “When you see me run, know that I’m not running for medals. I’m running for change. I’m running for greater equity for each of us. I’m running for women. More than anything, I’m running toward a future where no woman or girl is ever told to know her place.”
Photography: Harrison Boyce