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Thanks, but no thanks. I’ll stick to my “plugs" and "diapers” instead.

Lipstick to seal my vagina shut Lets start with its creators mouthImage courtesy Menseztech/Twitter
Blog Menstruation Saturday, February 25, 2017 - 18:26

Periods are painful. Abdomen cramps, tenderness, mood swings, cravings… there’s a lot to complain about when it comes to the debatable unfairness of biology. And let’s be honest, pads and tampons are expensive but indispensable for the majority of us who haven’t started using menstrual cups yet.

So, imagine my shock and surprise when I woke up one morning tagged on Facebook on a post about a “revolutionary” product that could – wait for it – seal my vagina lips shut to hold the menstrual blood.

Don’t tell me your eyes did not pop out of your sockets. This AMAZING product by Kansas-based Dr Dan Dopps, chiropractor and CEO of Mensez Innovations, was granted a patent on January 10. And here’s how it works according to a post on his LinkedIn profile:

“Mensez LipStick when applied to the labia minora, creates a seal that is perspiration and blood proof but it breaks down instantly with urine, retaining menstrual fluid in the vagina until urination. Upon urinating the seal releases and allows the urine along with the menstrual fluid to exit into the toilet. (sic)”

Essentially, if I apply this lipstick on my “lips downunder” as a now deleted Facebook post puts it, the combination of amino acids and oil in this lipstick will seal them together until my urine dissolves them, breaking the seal and letting loose all the blood that’s been corked up inside.

Now I’m all for innovative, out of the box ideas, but let me just say one tiny thing –

ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?

Dr Dopps, before I even start about why this is wrong in so MANY levels, do you know that women aren’t mannequins? Their only job is NOT to sit and look pretty, and work doesn’t stop even when we are menstruating. I know it must come as a big surprise to you, as your elementary knowledge about women’s anatomy is embarrassing.

Can you imagine going about your daily chores when every move you make makes you acutely aware of your vagina lips being stuck together? And Dr Dopps assured Ellen Scott for Metro.co.uk that the seal won’t react with sweat or menstrual blood to break prematurely, it sounds horribly restrictive and abrasive for a sensitive area like the vagina.

He also compared the Mensez lipstick to a “post-it note” rather than an adhesive, he also refers to tampons and sanitary pads as "plugs" and "diapers" in a reply to a concerned user on Facebook. He adds that he had to come up with this product because women “didn’t”.

“Yes, I am a man and you as a woman, should have come up with a better solution than diapers and plugs, but you didn’t. Reason being that women on and distracted by your period 25% of the time, making them far less productive then they could be (sic).”

 

Dr Dopps also thinks that periods are “gross, crusty, smelly and awful” and that women should be “free of the distractions, psychological issues” that come with the period and then “see what they develop”. Well, the only thing I’ve been developing as I read about this genius and his perceptions: disbelief and steadily building desire to throw something heavy.

But oh well, I’m a woman so every heightened emotion I experience must be a result of PMS.

I’d really like to know where Dr Dopps is getting his 25% figure from. The last time I checked, women are MADE to feel uncomfortable and hyperaware about being menstruating beings. That women are so uncomfortable about undergoing a completely natural biological process thanks to a million myths, taboos and restrictions that the society binds them with. And Dr Dopps’ idea of periods causing psychological issues in women feeds directly into existing misconceptions.

Dr Dopps also believes that we as humans (read, men) like things where they “belong” and not “uncontrolled” or leaking “out of its place”.

It appears that the Mensez lipstick is designed more for period-phobic people than for women. What’s scarier is he’s not the first to propagate the ‘women should control their period’ ideology.

In October last year, Ryan Williams, a 19-year-old had defied all logic to say that tampons are a “luxury item” and taxpayers should not have to pay if women cannot control their bladders. “I don’t urinate everywhere and expect free nappies,” he had said.

Yes, Dr Dopps isn’t the only one, sadly.

Among the various health hazards of this idea of restricting menstrual blood, what about the infections that blocking it can cause? Dr Dopps has an answer to such concerns: “It will be thoroughly tested and improved.” He said this in an interview to Kavin Senapathy for Forbes and added that the product uses “the vagina like a bladder just like tampons do”.

Take a moment for that to sink in. Perhaps this is why Linday Robertson points out for The Berry that a better name for the company would have been “men-says” instead of Mensez.

At this point, I have only one thing to say to Dr Dopps. For all the out-of-the box thinking you may be capable of, I suggest you use the lipstick on your own lips to seal them shut. We’ll happily continue using less advanced "plugs" and "diapers" for our periods as long you use a filter (read science and research) before unleashing half-baked “innovations” upon us.

(Views expressed are the personal opinions of the author.)

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