Sorry weirdly happy rollerblading woman in white, here’s a sanitary pad advert with actual blood

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Amy Swales

Buh-bye bright white tennis gear and grinning rollerblading women.

Buh-bye weird blue please-don’t-offend-us-with-your-monthly-blood-let’s-pretend-it’s-not-happening liquid.

Buh-bye vague allusions to absorbency and grimacing women gently touching their stomachs.

Buh-bye shrieking lady actually brandishing a red present.

It’s taken a while, but there’s finally an advert for sanitary pads that actually addresses the fact that having a period involves – dun dun durrrrrr – blood.

Bodyform’s storming new ad, which you can watch in full below, features several women playing sports, biking, hiking, generally being physically active and ignoring the fact they’re bleeding.

And it doesn’t shy away from it, showing a ballerina peeling bandages from her bloodied toes and boxers getting full-on hit in the face, before ending with the tag line, “No blood should hold us back”.

Created by London agency AMV BBDO, it’s part of Bodyform's (GREAT name, by the way) campaign educating people about how menstruation affects the body at different points in the monthly cycle and giving advice on nutrition and exercise.

That’s not to say some women don’t have such a bad experience every month that rolling up in a ball, crying and downing painkillers isn’t also a reality of periods, but it’s extremely refreshing to see something other than the tired old clichés, something that feels powerful.

And Bodyform has, well, form when it comes to cool ads. Remember the CEO telling a male Facebook commenter about the reality of periods? “The blood coursing from our uteri like a crimson landslide” no less.

Keep it up, Bodyform.


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Amy Swales

Amy Swales is a freelance writer who likes to eat, drink and talk about her dog. She will continue to plunder her own life and the lives of her loved ones for material in the name of comedy, catharsis and getting pictures of her dog on the internet.

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