Menstrual Hygiene Day: What it is & why it matters

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Watch our Instagram Live panel featuring Ob/Gyn Dr. Jane van Dis and our resident Flexperts, Kendra and Alexa, on May 24, 2022 at 3:00 p.m. PT. Tune in @flex on Instagram.

Period poverty—the lack of access to menstrual products, education, and resources—affects 500 million people worldwide. 

At Flex®, we’re driven by the desire to change the narrative around periods, which starts with normalizing and speaking candidly about them—including talking about those who aren’t lucky enough to afford the products to safely manage them.

This Saturday, May 28th, is Menstrual Hygiene Day—we know it feels like there’s a “day” for every little thing, but this is actually an important one (not that we’re saying National Cupcake Day isn’t important). 

So let’s explore what it is, why it matters, and what we can all do about it.

What is Menstrual Hygiene Day? 

First celebrated in 2014, Menstrual Hygiene Day is a global advocacy platform that promotes good menstrual health and hygiene (MHH). Designed to raise awareness and change negative social norms, it engages decision-makers to increase the political priority and catalyze action for MHH at global, national, and local levels. 

The mission: To create a world where no one is held back because they menstruate by 2030.

Why does it matter?

A little background knowledge might be helpful here. Menstrual hygiene itself means having access to menstrual hygiene products (AKA period products) and safe and sanitary spaces to use and dispose of them. However, period poverty—the lack of access to menstrual products, education, and resources—affects 500 million people worldwide. 

One out of every four teens in the U.S. misses classes at school because they lack access to period products. 23 percent of students have struggled to afford period products.  77% of students think there ought to be more in-depth education about menstrual health. A study of college-aged menstruators found that 14.2% had experienced period poverty in the past year; an additional 10% experienced it every month. 

It’s a global public health crisis, but it’s shrouded by the same shame and stigma that shuts down conversations about menstruation in general. That stigma only exacerbates the issue: A lack of awareness trickles down into limited access and poor sanitation, which in turn have huge ramifications for a person’s overall quality of life. 

What can you do to help?

You’ve already taken one good step by reading this post! We’re also taking our cues from the Menstrual Hygiene Day hashtag, #WeAreCommitted—to driving actionable change so that no one is stigmatized, excluded, or discriminated against simply because they menstruate. 

That’s where supporting organizations like Happy Period comes into play. Happy Period is the first Black-led organization with a focus on menstrual health education, advocacy, and access. The Flex Co. works closely with founder Chelsea Von Chaz to support the organization’s mission, assisting in community events and offering Flex shoppers the option to donate to Happy Period when checking out online.

“We are the catalyst for the advancement of menstrual care for Black people with periods. #HappyPeriod produces programs with love centered on menstrual care. We are committed to reshaping the discussion surrounding menstruation and empowering our community to advocate for their own body and well-being by learning and understanding their menstrual cycle. #HappyPeriod is our expression of freedom.”

Happy Period

Support, save, and share

We want to do our part to help make sure everyone has access to the products they need, so in honor of Menstrual Hygiene Day, we’re offering 15% off (almost!) everything on our site with code PERIOD15

#WeAreCommitted to increasing access to period care and education across the country. Let’s open up the conversation and destigmatize menstrual hygiene—our bodies and how they work should never be taboo. Our Menstrual Hygiene Day Sale will run from 5/23 to 5/31 and applies to Flex Disc and Plant+ Disc subscriptions, Flex Reusable Disc, Flex Cup, and all Bundles

Pro tip: All Flex products are HSA and FSA eligible

Looking for more?

That’s what we like to hear! We celebrate Menstrual Hygiene Day every year, so you can check up on what went down in 2021 here. And if all of this struck a chord in you, we’ve rounded up five posts to keep your learning kick going:

Plus, tune in on Instagram (today!) to learn more and help us amplify the message, where we’ll be hosting a very special Live panel discussion featuring Ob/Gyn Dr. Jane Van Dis and Flex VP of Customer Experience Kendra Jackson. We’ll be going live at 3:00 PM PST on our channel @flex, where our very own Alexa will lead a conversation on period hygiene and menstrual equity. 

PS: If you ever have any questions—whether or not they’re related to a specific Flex product—our crew of Flexperts is always here to help. Just shoot us an email at hello@flexfits.com or call or text us at 800-931-0882 any time. 

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