With more than two decades in her career working as a maid, charged with making thousands of beds with linens of every kind in hotel rooms, Ruth Young-Loaeza is an expert when it comes to sheets, thread counts, fabrics and styles.
Young-Loaeza, 50, is also well acquainted with the often labor-intense work of keeping fitted sheets in place at the corners and aligning the top sheets just right – by pulling at one end as the other end shortened.
She said that time after time, despite her best efforts as a bedmaking pro, they never appeared properly made.
That frustration with sheet-fitting, mattress lifting and the time it would take her to make beds – leaving her less than impressed on many occasions – led to the 35-year San Diego resident’s creation of a business called Neet Sheets.
Neet Sheets offer what Young-Loaeza describes as “a cutting-edge, ergonomic, patented product that streamlines the bed-making process.”
According to Young-Loaeza, making a bed from scratch can take up to 15 minutes for the lay person and 11 minutes for a professional, who is at high risk of developing musculoskeletal disorders, often stemming from having to lift mattress after mattress to fix stubborn sheets. This knowledge led to the development of her first prototype: a fitted bedsheet with stretchable corners and edges and a flat sheet with flaps.
Young-Loaeza cites a recent study conducted by California State University San Marcos that found that the use of Neet Sheets “resulted in a significant 47% reduction in bed-making time, as well as an impressive 75% reduction in the effort required to lift mattresses.”
Young-Loaeza’s journey as an inventor, innovator, serial entrepreneur, designer and patent holder is rooted in her extensive experience in the housekeeping industry.
“For over 23 years, I honed my skills and expertise in this field, gaining a deep understanding of the intricacies and nuances involved in delivering exceptional service,” she said, adding that during her career in housekeeping, “I recognized numerous opportunities for innovation and improvement, and I began to explore these possibilities through experimentation and exploration. I developed a keen sense of what works and what doesn’t.”
Young-Loaeza’s journey from the housekeeping industry to the world of entrepreneurship has been marked by challenges, setbacks and triumphs. She said after a car accident left her unable to work and led to the depletion of her savings, she found herself facing homelessness.
Young-Loaeza found added inspiration, education and financial guidance from the nonprofit The Rosie Network, the San Diego-headquartered nonprofit that empowers, impacts and advocates on behalf of veteran and military spouse small business owners and budding entrepreneurs.
“As a proud mother of an active-duty Air Force daughter serving as a medic in Germany, I am deeply committed to supporting our military and honoring the sacrifices of those who serve,” she said.
Stephanie Brown, founder and CEO of The Rosie Network, met Young-Loaeza several years ago and since then has been a strong backer, watching and celebrating the success of Neet Sheets.
“Ruth went out and got a patent after having all this branding done and she used her expertise on making tens of thousands of beds to land a contract with a hotel,” Brown said.
FOUNDED: 2018 (sales begun in 2021)
FOUNDER AND CEO: Ruth Young-Loaeza
HEADQUARTERS: San Diego
SOCIAL IMPACT: Neet Sheets decreases the amount of labor and physical strain among workers in hospitality and other industries.
NOTABLE: Neet Sheets holds three patents for utility and design.