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How is August period care navigating the tampon shortage?

Ruby Moon from Team August | 6.23.2022

You’ve probably seen the news about the tampon shortage.

On behalf of all of us in the tampon industry, this really has been a hard moment.

In case you're having troubles finding products at your local shop, August period care is still fully in stock and working hard behind the scenes to meet the increased demand in August tampons while keeping our manufacturing and shipping systems running smoothly. If you ever have any questions about your order or our products, feel free to email care@itsaugust.co!

As the menstruating community navigates this shortage, there are a few key points to remember:

1) First of all, Amy Schumer did NOT cause this shortage lol😅

We’ll admit that the Amy Schumer tampon commercials are hilarious…but not funny enough to cause a country-wide tampon shortage.

This shortage is due to rising raw material and fuel costs, labor shortages, and continuous supply chain challenges.

Speaking from our own experience, this is true for most period care brands: supply chain is something that is often just out of reach of our direct control. As much as you can carefully map out your production line and shipping schedule, there will always be surprise blimps in the system.

2) This is not a “women’s issue”.

A lot of news coverage has been referring to the shortage as a “women’s issue”. This isn’t true considering the non-binary and other trans folks who go through a menstrual cycle, and the women who don’t get a period for a variety of reasons.

PSA: Just call it a period product, not a ‘feminine hygiene product’.

On the topic of gender and trans rights, it’s also imperative that we combat the narrative that putting tampons in ‘boys’ bathrooms’ is another cause of the shortage. Trans men and boys exist, and likely need tampons to get through their day without leaking! This shortage affects ALL menstruators. It probably even affects non-menstruators who buy products for their children/friends/etc. …food for thought.

3) Tampons are a registered medical device.

This tampon shortage could be compared to when there were mask shortages for public health workers during the peak of the pandemic, and access to COVID-19 tests were not being distributed fairly across the population.

People with an active period are a marginalized portion of the population, (they make up about 26% of the global population). And this is demonstrated based on how resources and adequate health care are prioritized. Don’t even get us started about ‘the tampon tax’...

4) Take what you NEED.

This is not the time to be hoarding period products like toilet paper was in early COVID-19 days…Especially when you have access to ✨free✨ tampons.

Be mindful that there are no doubt other menstruators who are going to need a product. If you have a couple extra at home, pack them in your bag and offer them out to friends or other menstruators in need!

5) Struggling to find tampons is not unique to this moment in time.

The supply chain issues are relatively recent, but people struggling to find and/or buy (any type) of period products is not new. Period poverty affects around 500 million people worldwide. A lack of products is just one aspect of period poverty – combined with access to sanitation facilities, it can lead to unhygienic practices or even missing school, work or other daily activities.

Although the tampon shortage is mainstream news right now, we must acknowledge that period poverty is an ongoing challenge for millions of menstruators in the US and beyond.

6) There are other menstrual product options!

For those of you struggling to find enough tampons to get you through your period, consider pads and liners for the time being.

Also, DEFINITELY DO NOT LEAVE YOUR TAMPONS IN PAST THE 6 to 8-HOUR MARK! Take care of yourselves and know that August is here for you <3

“Period products are essential. Baby formula is essential. Abortion is essential.”

— quote from @feminist

A reminder that none of the current reproductive health issues are exclusive to women, but more broadly to anyone with a uterus.

— graphic by @betchus_sup

We wanted to extend a shoutout to all the companies in the period space alongside us: it’s not always easy right now but we got this💕

And to the menstruators reading, more than anything, having a period makes you part of a community who is here for you. Know that this shortage is a temporary situation and let it fuel the fire under you to fight for long term menstrual equity!

Take a product, pass a product.

If you’re able to right now, consider donating a box of products at checkout on itsaugust.co!

Our nonprofit partner, No More Secrets, MBS would be more than happy to receive sustainable period products at this time!

And if you want to vent about menstrual equity to a community of people who love talking about periods: Join the Inner Cycle!

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