This work by creative agency, Don’t Panic, is hilarious. And that’s quite a feat considering its job is to introduce a new kind of tampon for femcare brand, Callaly.
The film is also irresistible. It has 100% women appeal and is far more likely to be shared far and wide than skipped. Another wonderful accomplishment.
Please watch the film before you read on:
The film, directed by Chloe Sheppard from production house Forever, is called Unboxing 1930s Women’s Products. And as you have just been made aware, it points out in the most entertaining way possible, that female-oriented products have come a long way. However, while many of these have been significantly upgraded (several them look like instruments of torture), a whole century has had little to no impact on the design of the tampon.
Each unboxed item looks more and more absurd until the women are faced with a tampon. First created in 1931, it looks “exactly the same” today as it did then. The film plays cleverly with the familiar format and online trend of unboxing videos and builds up to a deliberately anticlimactic reveal. A necessity used by billions of women around the world has not been improved since its invention.
Until now. The film was created to introduce Callaly’s own design upgrade, the tampliner, which combines an organic cotton tampon with a built-in mini-liner.
Filmed prior to the COVID-19 crisis and lockdown restrictions, the film also unintentionally highlights the power of female camaraderie and humour. The wonderful and diverse cast (including a creative director, a singer and a body positivity activist/sex educator) had not seen any of the objects before, all reactions are totally genuine.
Alice Dowdall, creative, Don’t Panic, noted, “It’s absolutely crazy that there’s been no innovation in tampons for almost 100 years; we wanted to shine a light on this. I read an article that said if men had periods, tampons would be super high tech and made by high-end engineering companies; that’s true. It’s definitely time for change within the menstrual industry; this message is really important.”
Ewa Radziwon, co-founder and head of product, Callaly, commented, “Trillions of R&D dollars have been spent on developing innovations that meet the needs of just 50% of the world, and we’ve failed to see any real progress in fundamental products like the tampon. Callaly is committed to female-centred innovation, creating products that are designed perfectly for women’s bodies. We want to get people talking about periods, the products we use and what we should expect from them.”
Chloe Sheppard, director, Forever, added. “As soon as I read the script I knew I wanted to be a part of the film; a chance to bring a group of women together to share stories and have genuine fun, whilst not forgetting the whole point of the film: that tampon innovation has been neglected. Much of my work focuses on representation and discussing taboo subjects, so this was perfect.”
Creative Agency: Don’t Panic
Creatives: Madeline Charles & Alice Dowdall
Copywriter: Jake Moss
Creative Partner: Rick Dodds
Managing Director: Joe Wade
Engagement Strategist: Florence Auckland
Senior Project Manager & Producer: Jennifer Clare Houlihan
Account Manager: Rebecca Dowse
Production Company: Forever
Director: Chloe Sheppard
Executive Producers: Sasha Nixon & Savvas Stavrou
Producer: India Lee
Production Manager: Joss George-Gilbert
Director of Photography: Amelia Hazlerigg
1st Assistant Director: Rich Savage
Gaffer: Bill Rae
Production Designer: Dale Slater
Stylist: Lloyd Jones
Make-up: Karla Q Leon
Editor: Lainy Black
Grade: Electric Theatre Collective
Colourist: Ruth Wardell
Sound Recordist: Kirstie Howell
Sound Engineer: Davo McConville
Audio Post Production: Sister Sound
Sound Engineer: Sean Mahoney
Composer: Rhumba Club (Tom Falle)