At No More Taboo, our vision is a period-friendly world! To create that world we need everyone, including you, to stop hating periods. Join the fight against period poverty, support independent business and treat yo-self – what more could you ask for!
We totally understand that periods aren’t that fun. They can make you tired, fed up and grumpy.
What we don’t understand is why periods are something that we can’t talk about. We’ve been brought up to think that we need to hide our periods: sliding tampons up our sleeves, waiting for the public loo to clear out before rustling your sanitary towel wrapper and using every euphemism under the sun to describe them: on the rag, shark week and the classic “I’m on”. On what!?
This stigma around periods can be really damaging for all of us. Let’s first think about vulnerable people living in poverty right here in Bristol. If they can’t afford sanitary products: who can they turn to for help?
This is Erin. She is 37, and is staying at a night shelter in Bristol. She has endometriosis and therefore has really painful, heavy periods. However, she has nowhere to go during the day and has to sit around on benches and rely on the toilets in cafés to manage her period.
This is Kiran. She is 28 and working three jobs on minimum wage in order to pay for the rent, bills and essential items for herself and her three children. The landlord just put her rent up, which is making it impossible for her to cover all the costs. She has to go to the food bank, but is too embarrassed to ask for sanitary products.
But this is important for all of us – in a lifetime, you’ll use over 11,000 sanitary products, as a nation we’re throwing away 200,000 tonnes of bloody waste each year in the UK alone! One pack of sanitary towels has the same amount of plastic as four carrier bags, and they’ve been found to have a load of nasty chemicals such as bleach and pesticides that should not be going anywhere near your precious vagina.
This is why we need to break the taboo and the silence. To help those who need it. To help us. To help the planet. We want a period-friendly world!
So how are we going to change the world together? This is where our new product, Monthly Hugs, comes in. Monthly Hugs is a revolutionary little box that will help us to tackle period poverty while helping you to have a much happier period.
As a subscriber to Monthly Hugs, you’ll get:
- A cute little box filled with ethical, delicious and fragrant goodies
- The option to receive a reusable sanitary product (see our FAQs below to find out more about these)
- A chance to ask all your period-related questions
- To join and meet a community of like-minded people
- Regular updates on our charitable work from NMT’s HQ!
At the same time as receiving all of this, you’ll also be making wider social and environmental impacts:
- Tackling period poverty - helping women like Erin and Kiran
- Reducing gendered health inequalities
- Reducing landfill waste
- Supporting local, independently-run businesses
So when you feel like your uterus is punching you from the inside: indulge in a cup of fresh tea, nibble on some organic chocolate and remember that your contribution is really helping us to help those in need.
No More Taboo is a Bristol based not-for-profit social enterprise, which means we believe in doing business for good. So you can be guaranteed that all the profits made from selling Monthly Hugs will be reinvested directly into tackling period poverty. We run our own charitable projects, so everything we spend on these projects is accounted for – your money goes directly to those in need, starting right here in Bristol.
Our projects involve workshops and training for vulnerable people living in period poverty and the organisations that support them, whether that is drug support groups, refugee centres, food banks and schools. We also offer period-clinics and support to switch to a money-saving reusable product.
We’re the only period-related subscription box that encourages you to try new sanitary products too, like menstrual cups and washable pads. Products that can really impact the amount of waste you personally create, and in which you get to join an exciting community of people fighting for a fairer world.
We are also the only box that is committed to sourcing our goodies from independently-owned, ethical businesses (which means we pay fair prices) to support local business owners and ensure our “box miles” (the impact on the environment) are minimised.
No More Taboo is an all-female team, with three directors, Chloe, Alex and Shai, 15 amazing volunteers and a team of advisors who have been helping us to grow. We’ve been active for two years, advocating sustainability in periods and tackling period poverty!
Chloe, our founder, established the organisation after seeing the negative effects that menstrual taboos had on the lives of school girls in Bolivia and the concerns that they raised about disposable sanitary products harming their Pachamama (Mother Earth). After coming home from her trip, Chloe wanted to do something about the environmental impact of sanitary products alongside breaking down the taboos and silences around periods.
Since then, our team has worked on menstrual hygiene projects that span continents, we’ve got years of experience of the third sector, and over the last few months have been working really hard to research and implement our tackling period poverty programme in the UK. However, we know that periods could be better for everyone: which is why we came up with Monthly Hugs. We’ve been developing this idea for 6 months now, and we’re so excited to launch it! ! But don’t hear it from us, have a look at this testimonial from product tester, Emma, who tried three months’ worth of Monthly Hugs!
The money raised through this campaign will help us with our vital start-up costs taking the box from prototype to reality. This, in turn, will help us to generate income for our all-important tackling period poverty programme in the UK for years to come.
So what sort of start-up costs are we talking about? Well, we need to start buying stock, not only your ethical treats but all the sustainable packaging to put them in, we need to invest in some more equipment, some storage space and start building our software to make sure you get the personalised hug you deserve. Oh, and also pay for some of our time to develop the box.
Well, we have been selected as one of the teams in Bristol who are working towards creating a more sustainable, greener city for everyone. Bristol Green Capital are offering to give us match funding of £4000 if we are one of the first teams to raise £4000 from the crowd, effectively doubling your pledge. So the earlier you pledge the better!
Could you sponsor a month of our box? We will include you in the design of our booklet which comes with each Monthly Hug and allows you to communicate with our Monthly Huggers. We also look for donations in kind or sponsorship of our Tackling Period Poverty programmes. Get in touch with [email protected] for more information.
If you run or know a small business with a product you would love to see in the box please get in touch now with our CMO Alex on [email protected]. We’re looking for suggestions.
Please share our campaign far and wide, let everyone know you’ve stopped fighting periods and you’ve started fighting inequality.
What is a reusable sanitary product?
A reusable sanitary product is an alternative to pads and tampons which can be used over and over. We sell two types: menstrual cups or washable pads. Menstrual cups are made of medical grade silicon, they last for 10 years and only need to be changed every 12 hours, creating no waste. Washable pads work in exactly same way as conventional pads but you can stick them in the washing machine and use them again, they come in soft organic materials and loads of great patterns.
When will I get my first box?
We need to give ourselves plenty of time to get our systems in place, negotiate our contracts with suppliers and set up our equipment, the crowdfunding finishes at the end of June. So we estimate our first box will be posted out in August. If you want to get your hands on one sooner, buy a LUXE ticket to our launch event on #tabootuesday 13th June, which includes drinks, snacks, entertainment, meeting the team and you receive a LIMITED EDITION box.
What do I get as a subscriber?
The standard box includes five goodies from different independent retailers, for example, in one box you may recieve: chocolate, tea, candle, soap and a heat pad. You will also recieve an information booklet with sustainablity tips and hints plus information on how our boxes are helping tackle period poverty that month, access to our events and our community. This is all included for £15 per month and can be signed up for on a rolling contract or for 3, 6 and 12 months. These are currently only available through our crowdfunder.
If you wish to try a reusable sanitary product this can be added on for £5 per month for 3 months.
The VIP boxes include your choice of reusable products, plus extra suprise pamper gifts such as a large bunch of flowers, a facial or trip to a spa once a year.
What's in a donation box?
Attendees of our Tackling Period Poverty workshops will recieve a more practical monthly hug with a reusable sanitary product and products such as underwear, soap, hand sanitiser and biodegradable wipes as well as information on where they can access support and health tips. So when you buy a donation box, you know this is going directly to a person in need.
Are you a charity?
No, although we run charitable/social projects, we are not a charity. We believe in doing business for good and using the profits to support our projects.
Do you pay for the goodies or are they donated?
We are working with small businesses which means they don’t usually have the resource to give us their products for free. We usually pay a reduced wholesale cost and some of our suppliers chose to give us an even more favourable offer due to our not for profit status, but we do still pay.
But if you’re not for profit, how can you pay yourselves?
We are a business. Legally a company limited by guarantee, which means we have no shareholders and our profits must go to a cause helping to empower people around the topic of menstruation. However it also means we operate in exactly the same way as a business, we can pay our staff and for all the other costs associated with running a business but we don’t line our pockets with the money that we make - we use it for our projects.
I love what you’re doing but I don’t need a box, how can I help?
Watch this little video!
Gift or donate a box, and get involved! Tell all your friends that you think this is a great idea and help us get some more pledges.
I don’t have any money to pledge but I want to support you?
That’s OK, we get it. Help us out in a different way, by telling everyone you know about what we are doing and why they should support us. Maybe you could volunteer as an ambassador or volunteer some of your time and skills to help make No More Taboo a better stronger organisation, get in touch with [email protected] if you are interested.