- Kenny Jones, model and transgender man, became the face of the I’M ON campaign, an initiative launched in United Kingdom to open discussions surrounding female periods.
- Launched by the period subscription service Pink Parcel, the I’M ON campaign was considered groundbreaking.
- Research conducted by the brand revealed that people are still reluctant to talk about menstruation openly.
Transgender people talk about their periods too.
For the first time in history, a transgender male model was chosen to be part of a campaign that aims to fight against the stigma about menstruation.
Kenny Jones, model and transgender man, became the face of the I’M ON campaign, an initiative launched in United Kingdom to open discussions surrounding female periods according to the transgender news article by the Independent UK on March 15.
Face of I’M ON campaign
Launched by the period subscription service Pink Parcel, the I’M ON campaign was considered groundbreaking and would feature Jones with the appearance of other activists, fashion designers, and writers.
Jones, 23, born as a woman known as Kelsey and works as a west London-based model, shared his story on how he managed his menstruation while transitioning.
At an early age, he struggled with his gender identity. He went to an exclusive girls school but refused to wear skirt. He was recommended and went to see a psychiatrist at age 11.
Coming out as trans at early age of 14, he shaved his head and changed his name two years later. He also dropped out of school in year nine and instead went to college with older students where he claimed the community was more tolerant.
By the age 17, he began hormone replacement therapy that stopped his periods. By the time he was 20, he grew facial hair that made him feel comfortable in his own skin.
“During my transition I did have to deal with experiencing periods each month and many of the negative stereotypes that can come along with it,” Jones shared. “Assuming periods are inhibiting to people tends to perpetuate period shame even more, and makes people even more reluctant to talk about them.”
Menstruation as ‘taboo’ subject
Jones also explained the motivation in joining the campaign.
“I always found the fact that no one seemed to openly talk about periods quite difficult and made me want to hide mine even more. That’s why I wanted to be involved in the I’M ON campaign,” Jones explained.
He continued, “We need to encourage everyone to talk about periods, whether they experience them directly or not. Sparking conversation is the first step to normalising periods within society.”
Internal research by the company revealed that 92 percent of content about periods were of the binary perspective and only 8 percent with transgender perspective.
In addition, a third of the respondents considered menstruation as taboo and about 25 percent claimed they experience shame or embarrassment when menstruating. About half also said they never talked about it with their partners and 44 percent said they avoid the topic with friends.
With the campaign, Jones appeared together with British fashion designer Olivia Rubin, style influencer and activist Natalie Lee, and journalists and podcast hosts Pandora Sykes and Dolly Alderton.
They modelled Pink Parcel’s line of statement shirts that challenged existing beliefs about menstruation and that halted conversations around it. The $5 collected from sale of each shirt would be donated to a charity to menstrual products for asylum seekers and refugees.