This Colorado-made product is a neck gaiter, evolved

An avid skier came up with Gatortailz
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Gatortailz | Centennial | Product: Apparel & Gear

Emily Dick has been an avid skier since she was a little kid. Now 14, she came up with a better neck gaiter that evolved into Gatortailz when she was all of 8 years old.  

To combat the “itchy and hot” status quo, she cut a hole in a gaiter to keep her ponytail from bunching up inside of it. “Ever since then, I’ve been skiing without problems,” she says. 

Emily’s also fielded plenty of requests about where to get one in the interceding years. “I realized I wasn’t the only one with this problem of an itchy neck,” she says.  

“Pretty much every person—male or female—with long hair has the same problem,” adds Emily’s mom, C.C. Dick. 

They didn’t have an answer—that is not until the 2020-2021 season. 

C.C. is a wedding planner by trade, so the duo took advantage of the lull in weddings during the COVID-19 pandemic to launch Gatortailz as 50/50 partners. The business partners connected with American Made Apparel Manufacturing in Aurora to sew the first batch of Gatortailz in late 2021. “We sold out in the first week,” Emily says. 

They ordered more runs and got similar results. “Every time we’d put them on the shelves, they’d be gone,” C.C. says. 

The catalog has snowballed into 30 patterns and fabrics, as Emily and C.C. plan new fleece products and balaclavas. 

Emily, a freshman at Cherry Creek High School, says she wants to build on the startup as a possible career. “It’s been really cool to get this experience,” she says. “My mom’s been really helpful showing me how to do this kind of stuff.” 

Laughs C.C.: “Hopefully, when she graduates from college, she can run a major corporation named Gatortailz.”

This article is part of the 2021 Made in Colorado feature. To learn more about the Colorado companies changing manufacturing in the state, click here. 

Categories: Made in Colorado, Magazine Articles