Health education entered schools in the 1920s. 100 years later, we’ve made little progress. Sadly, 41% of women are not 100% confident they know how to correctly insert a tampon, according to recent research conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Tampax1. One reason for this confusion is that in the US, only 29 states are required to teach sex and reproductive health education and of those, only 22 states require the content to be medically accurate2. Tampax, the leading tampon brand, is working to change that by joining forces with Emmy award-winning comedian and actress Amy Schumer. Together they are on a mission to ensure people understand what is going on with their bodies so they can take control over their periods, feel educated and empowered about using tampons, and have a more comfortable experience.
“We thought a lot about whether or not to kick off this new period education campaign now. While we paused to shift focus to support more urgent needs, we decided that because periods aren’t stopping, we shouldn’t either,” says Melissa Suk, Vice President of North America Tampax and Always. “When we chose to focus on tampon and period education, we knew Amy Schumer was a perfect fit because Amy doesn’t shy away from anything. Our goal is to make period and tampon conversations as normal as periods and the first step is getting people comfortable talking about them. We hope this partnership and our new, engaging “edu-tainment” period and tampon content will encourage more people to laugh, talk and learn about them.”
Period education is not new to Tampax. In 1941, with a strong female founder at the helm, Tampax established the company’s first educational department. The women educators became known as the ‘Tampax Ladies,’ traveling to colleges, doctors, and medical conventions to teach about menstruation and dispel myths and misconceptions about periods and tampons. Today, education is still a top priority for the brand and there is still much work to be done. The 2020 Tampax Period Education Survey1 revealed there is a significant knowledge gap when it comes to periods and tampons. This leads to misinformation, miseducation and missed opportunities that can limit a person’s potential. Some of the key findings include:
- Virtually no one (94% of US adults) knows how many days the average menstrual cycle lasts
- 77% of adults believe that a tampon can get lost inside a woman’s body
- More than half of women (62%) can’t locate a vagina on a diagram
- 13% of adults admit to not knowing anything about tampons
- Nearly 1 in 10 adults (7%) think that a tampon can take a woman’s virginity
“When I started working with Tampax,” shared Amy Schumer, “it made my heart hurt to hear about the discomfort people are putting up with because they don’t understand periods or even how to use a tampon properly, and I want to do everything I can to change that. My hope is that through this partnership, we’ll educate ourselves and each other and take the senseless shame out of getting your period.”
Schumer is featured in a series of comedic videos, directed by Kathy Fusco of Hungryman, that are aimed at teaching people about their periods and tampons. Schumer is joined in this campaign by medical expert Dr. Melisa Holmes, OB/GYN and co-founder of Girlology, a leading health education community, to answer burning questions people have about their bodies, periods and tampons. The campaign will be brought to life across TV, video, digital and social media, including Snapchat, with a custom Lens that lets people put themselves in a Tampax tampon costume designed by small business owner, Claire Renaud of Costume Gallery, N.H.
Tampax’s commitment to people with periods extends beyond education and superior period protection. Tampax has a history of giving and, over the last year, has donated more than 8 million tampons to people in need through partners including Matthew 25 Ministries, Feeding America and Good+ Foundation. Additionally, Tampax joined Procter & Gamble’s family of brands committing $5 million to the #TakeOnRace Fund for organizations striving for equality and justice like UNCF, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Color of Change and YWCA USA, while also using their social platform to elevate melanated voices. Furthermore, as a continuation of the brand’s mission, Tampax has partnered with Girlology to create the Tampax & Girlology Period Foundation to create access to medically accurate menstrual health education for young people in communities in need.
With this powerful coalition, Tampax will make period conversations as normal as periods – removing the stigma around periods and tampons so people can laugh about them, learn about them and have a more comfortable period experience.
Do You Want In?
- Educate: Visit www.Tampax.com for more information and educational content, and join Tampax on social @Tampax to get the conversation and education ‘flowing’ in your own community.
- Engage: Share your stories on social by tagging #TimeToTampax– and check out the Tampax Suit Snapchat Lens!
- Tune In: Subscribe to our YouTube channel for access to exclusive videos with Amy Schumer
- Stay Connected: Follow @Tampax on social media for real-time updates and more fun with Amy
1The Tampax Period Education Survey, 2020
Please refer to the full survey results for the actual phrasing of each statement shown to U.S. adults. To ensure a higher degree of accuracy in the data responses were presented in random order and included a mix of true (correct) and false (incorrect) statements.
2 Bradford, K., & Johnson, T. (2020, April 1). State Policies on Sex Education in Schools. Retrieved May 11, 2020, from https://www.ncsl.org/research/health/state-policies-on-sex-education-in-schools.aspx
The Tampax Period Education Survey was conducted online within the U.S. by The Harris Poll on behalf of Tampax from March 18-20, 2020 among 2,050 U.S. adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.