- A UK feminine protection brand released a commercial that uses blood instead of the typical blue dye.
- The brand, Bodyform, did so in attempts to normalize periods.
- People are applauding the brand’s efforts, and hope others follow suit.
For years, feminine hygiene brands have faced a dilemma: how to represent periods in ads when people are grossed out by the mere thought of blood (let alone blood that comes from a vagina.) The solution was a bright blue dye that is neither the color or consistency of a woman’s flow. Recently, however, one brand has stepped up to accurately portray and normalize menstruation.
Bodyform, a UK-based feminine protection brand, recently released a commercial that features blood — or an accurate simulation of it. The ad, titled “Blood Normal” on YouTube, starts with the stereotypical shot: A person takes a test tube filled with liquid and pours it over a pad to demonstrate its absorbency. Only this time, the tube is filled with a think red liquid instead of a blue water-like substance.
Bodyform then takes it a step further. Later in the commercial, it shows a woman showering while blood drips down her leg. It also shows a woman in a red bathing suit lying on an inflatable pad, and another one wearing white underwear with a red pattern over where a pad would go to represent the blood.
But it’s not the representation of blood that makes this commercial so revolutionary. It shows what appears to be a man going into a bodega and buying pads for a woman in his life, be it a mother, sister, or girlfriend. It shows people at a costume party embracing someone dressed as a pad. It ends with the lines: “Periods are normal. Showing them should be too.”
In short, it does what many brands have yet to do: normalize periods and all they encompass. In an interview with Cosmopolitan UK, Bodyform’s marketing manager Traci Baxter said that was the intention of the ad.
“As a leader in feminine hygiene, we want to change this by challenging the taboo and ultimately removing the stigma, making it even easier for anyone to talk about periods, now and in the future,” she said.
And that’s already started. Since the ad premiered on October 17, people around the world have taken to Twitter to applaud the brand’s efforts and share their own stories about how period taboo has harmed them in some way.
My late mum said she thought she was dying for 3 days before she dare ask someone back in 40’s.. even now we need to educate #bloodnormal
— H (@countrymousie) October 24, 2017
— Tasha (@mummyandmoose) October 24, 2017
— Fiona Conn (@fionaconn) October 24, 2017
Here’s hoping other brands follow suit soon.
You can watch the entire Bodyform ad below: