Women bleed, but it doesn't stop them competing, in this U.K. commercial from Bodyform, part of a campaign by the feminine hygiene brand that aims to break down taboos around the menstrual cycle and exercise.
Directed by Stink's Jones + Tino for AMV BBDO, the ad portrays women taking part in sport from surfing to ballet, with gashed faces, bleeding noses, raw and bloody toes, scraped hands and more. In its uncompromising and authentic portrayal of women, it's reminiscent of Sport England's award-winning "This Girl Can" commercial -- but more hardcore, and with injuries. The ad ends with the tagline "No blood should hold us back."
The wider campaign, titled Red.Fit, aims to enable women to become more mentally and physically motivated throughout their menstrual cycle. Bodyform has entered into a research partnership with St. Mary's University, Twickenham and University College London (UCL) investing in a PhD program exploring the effect of the menstrual cycle on women's health and exercise.
An online hub will provide consumers with direct access to the research findings, together with exercise videos, nutritional information and motivational podcasts for different phases of their menstrual cycle.
Nicola Coronado, marketing director at SCA-owned Bodyform, said in a statement: "Menstruation really is "the last taboo" for women in sport, simply because we lack knowledge and understanding of this subject area. Using our partnership with St. Mary's University, Twickenham and UCL will help us to challenge these category stereotypes and transform the consumer mindset when it comes to the perceived barriers around periods and exercise."
The campaign comes as other feminine hygiene brands are trying to disrupt the category -- in particular HelloFlo, which brought comedy to periods.