Imagine a shop that’s entirely dedicated to women on their periods…well you don’t have to imagine anymore, U by Kotex made it a reality! Over the weekend of May 13th – 15th, 2016, U by Kotex presented “The Period Shop” on New York’s popular 5th Avenue. The pop-up shop marks the launch of The Period Projects, a groundbreaking series of projects inspired and led by real women who share a passion for change in regards to women’s issues. The idea for The Period Shop stemmed from a Tumblr post by Sarah M., who worked with U by Kotex to help make her thoughts become a reality. Here is the post that inspired this amazing pop-up:
“GUESS WHAT? I’M CALLING FOR A PERIOD SHOP!!!! I want a space where we can feel comfortable and respected during an otherwise shitty time of the month. My dream period shop has: designer pads/tampons – ice cream – heating pads/phone charging station – mani/pedi stations – live dj obvi – and sweatpants. HOW AMAZING WOULD THIS BE? Every woman (cis or trans) will be welcome to bask in this glory!! THINK ABOUT IT LADIES!!! SOMEONE MAKE THIS HAPPEN!!!” – Sarah M., February 25, 2016 via Tumblr (excerpt)
Ladies, Sarah M. voiced something that I’m sure all women have wished for, and U by Kotex heard her cries. The Period Pop-Up Shop was everything you could ever want while you’re on your period, and more. From the hanging tampon installation on the ceiling, to the wall filled with bars of chocolate, the decor was instantly comforting.
Not only did they have all the essentials (all kinds of pads, tampons, and pantyliners), but they had all the comforts women want while on their period. There was all kinds of period-themed, feminist-natured merchandise, pajama pants, comfy t-shirts, period-themed mugs, jewelry, and bags! My personal favorites were the orange zizg-zag pajama pants, and the pin that says “Fries before guys.” You can’t go wrong with comfy pants and french fries! The best part of the shop was that all the designers and businesses that participated were all female-owned, and part of the profits were donated to charity. How awesome is that?
After perusing the merchandise, you’ll find a huge black dry-erase wall, where women wrote what their period is to them, and became united over the same natural occurrence that most women must endure once a month. The wall was like an entry into a sisterhood, with numerous women coming together and sharing their true feelings about their periods.
Besides the retail part of the store, there was also an upstairs “Chill Lounge” with a live DJ, lounge sofas, complimentary manicures and massages, and an ice cream bar! The ice cream bar, sponsored by Brooklyn Bell, featured fun flavors inspired by all the things women crave while on their period; chocolate and vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, potato chip toppings, chocolate chips, and rainbow sprinkles. I had the vanilla with crushed potato chips and caramel sauce on top, which initially sounded weird, but honestly tasted reeaaalllyyy good.
The Period Shop was an awesome idea that became a popular place for women to unite and sympathize with each other, if only for the weekend. It really helped jumpstart the dialogue about periods, which normally is a taboo thing to discuss in public, but shouldn’t be. There is no place that really caters to women and the things they need during that time of the month, and social standards make women feel uncomfortable when purchasing pads and tampons in the store. Because this is something that a lot of women go through, we really should have a store solely dedicated to all things for our period! There’s comfort in being in the same space with other women who know exactly how you’re feeling. Hopefully U by Kotex will consider making a permanent store based off of the popularity and success of this pop-up shop!