A period emoji has been given the green light and is due to hit smartphone keyboards in early 2019, giving women and girls a much-needed new way to talk about their periods.
Unicode – the California-based organisation that manages the distribution of emojis – has confirmed that the blood-drop shaped emoticon will be rolled out on smartphone keyboards worldwide as early as autumn.
It comes after more than 55,000 people called for a period emoji to be added to the global emoji keyboard last year, in a campaign led by global girls’ rights organisation Plan International to help break down the silence, stigma and taboos surrounding periods.
Research from Plan International revealed a clear need for more accessible ways of talking about menstruation. A survey of women aged 18-34 found half (47%) believed a period emoji would make it easier for them to talk about their periods with female friends and partners.
Hayley Cull, Advocacy & Community Engagement Director at Plan International Australia, said:
“The inclusion of an emoji which can express what 800 million women around the world are experiencing every month is a huge step towards normalising periods and smashing the stigma which surrounds them.
“For years we’ve obsessively silenced and euphemised periods. As experts in girls’ rights, we know that this has a negative impact on girls; girls feel embarrassed to talk about their periods, they’re missing out, and they can suffer health implications as a consequence.
“An emoji isn’t going to solve this, but it can help change the conversation. Ending the shame around periods begins with talking about it.”
This was great to see! Anything to break the menstrual taboos! After having my 2nd child and recently getting my period back I started charting my cycle daily. And I’ve found that through this process, I know when I need to rest more, create time to write & be more creative and when I best make decisions. It’s seriously an untapped power our cycles!!