Saturday, 29 October 2005

The History of Tampons



All of my female readers will know what I mean when I say that tampons are perhaps the best invention for women ever! (Male readers with sisters, live-in girlfriends and wives will also have a good understanding too of why I say this...). Apparently the ancient Egyptians first invented the disposable tampon - theirs was made out of papyrus, ouch! I did some research on the history of tampons and came up with the following interesting links:

Tampons through history
http://inventors.about.com/library/inventors/bltampons.htm

An essay on tampons in American history
The all-American tampon.

The Museum of Menstruation (and it's not only open for 4 days a month!) Fascinating!
http://www.mum.org/obger50s.htm

And an interesting review of the aforementioned museum...
http://www.publichistory.org/reviews/View_Review.asp?DBID=21

12 comments:

Farah said...

No discussion though of the whole history of applicators. I remember vividly being mocked by other girls at school for using Lillets (OBs in the US) instead of Tampax because (horror) you had to use your own fingers to get them into place. You had to [indrawn breath] touch yourself.

Alterior said...

TAMPAX have a non-applicator version too. They cunningly package them in lovely little sweetie-like boxes but they are still not preferred. I personally feel the applicator ones are the best - the others are too messy, although amusing to insert.

John Doom said...

Ewww. Alterior, why did ya have to do this one? I'd still like to believe girls don't poop.

Awww, now I'm all grossed out.

Farah said...

It's much easier to get a non-applicator tampon into place. I had terrible trouble with the applicator ones. "Mess" is what I mean: why is this "messy"? It's just blood and there is a tap over there...

Perdita said...

Oh man
Now you've done it. The subject is okay, but the forum is too much.
Way to chase off the male faction of your readers.

ps. I know women who have little terrycloth liners made to attach to their knickers. Now I know they are just being old school...not all earth-nugety and gross.

TW said...

Hey now, I think it is a fab topic.

Wealthy from the internet said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
James O said...

Alterior, I wondered if you were thinking of sinking your teeth into the historical inacurracies of the BBC/HBO 'Rome'; not being a specialist in ancient history I was still shocked to see how many mistakes the programme racked up in the first episode. It made the 'Asterix' books look like models of authenticity.

Lynne Murray said...

Re tampons--warning--"Girls" room memory...boys may wish to skip.
One of the difficulties of being initiated into tampons is that they are not always immediately user-friendly. I draw a veil for the squirming male reader over the horrific memory of being stuck in high school restroom stall, having inserted the applicator tube, which settled in comfortably (and uselessly). The tampon itself, unlike its nonapplicator cousins, suffered from immediate erectile dysfunction once out of its cardboard sleeve. So the problems were suddenly multiplied: staunching the flow, removing the applicator tube (no easy task, as it had no string), and resisting the desire to send the useless tampon to the manufacturer with an extremely negative product feedback note.

Another Damned Medievalist said...

*** possible TMI disclaimer ***

There was a great discussion on this at BitchPhD's recently -- I hadn't realized how harmful to the environment are the chemicals they use to bleach most tampons, with or without applicators (and let's not even talk about the plastic ones -- how horrendous are they?). There are now tampons made of organic, unbleached cotton available, but Bitch swears by sea sponges, which I would think predate the papyrus?

Plus, one can have sex with them in ...

Another Damned Medievalist said...

***More TMI ***

*laughing at images of 'touch myself'* the last time I was here was when Sharon at EMN linked to the history of dildoes

Also, cat lovers may note that some cats think that the old, battered but still unused tampon in the bottom of one's purse -- the one with the wrap half-off and the string loose? It looks like a toy mouse.

candy said...

Thanks Alterior, I am doing research for my art class and my topic was eary egyptian tampons! Well, among other things but this I found the least info on till I got to your page. Again, Thanks, Candy