Scenes of the film show a man buying pads, a woman asking for a pad across the dinner table and school children passing a pad across the classroom, which aims to send a strong visual message that periods are normal. Towards the end of the film, viewers see women who are in pain, while the blue liquid has at last been replaced with a more fitting red.
Libresse brand manager Mpho Nojiwa says, "For years, women have been subjected to the discomfort of openly addressing menstruation conversations and testosterone-fueled stereotypical ideas that men don't buy sanitary products. '#BloodNormal' aims to debunk myths and educate society about normalising periods by confronting these sort of gender-based stereotypes."
"There has been a huge gap for health education on puberty and adolescence. It is crucial that we engage girls in health education in order to demystify menstrual-related myths and break down societal taboos," adds Nojiwa.
Internationally, the integrated campaign also includes elements such as 'period underwear', created by French lingerie company Dessu, pad-shaped pool floats, which was a short film competition and even stand-up comedy performed by 12-year-old talent Saffron Herndon.
According to Libresse, its campaign hits the South African market at the same time as news that a new set of 'period emojis', depicting a red droplet of blood, ovaries, a pad, etc., will be introduced in the next emoji collection for phones in March.
"Girls need information, and it’s our duty as parents to shift the harmful gender norms that surround menstruation. '#BloodNormal' aims to change mindsets, spark conversations and allow women to embrace periods," Nojiwa concludes.
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