Someone has invented a tampon you can have in during sex

20,000 people have signed up to try it

Periods make some men and women squeamish.

Thankfully, innovation continues to diminish the taboo. The government is ending the tampon tax; Apple’s latest iteration of the health app includes menstrual tracking software. Some people will always be more open than others but at least a conversation is now taking place.

And now San Francisco-based technology company is broaching another frontier: it’s designed an alternative to tampons which can be worn during sex.

It’s called the Flex and is similar to the Mooncup. It’s disposable, disc-shaped and imposes a barrier to the cervix which blocks blood from flowing. It can be worn for up to 12 hours.


Looks a bit like a high-end lip balm, fine

It’s going to be available to pre-order online from April, and will start to ship products in September. You can order a free sample on the website right now. Apparently, 20,000 people have asked for one, 25 per cent of whom are guys.

The site bills the product as pitched at “people who want more sex”, which is canny marketing. Testimonials assert its success. “Neither my partner or I could feel Flex, and there was no mess at all. She feels more comfortable, I’m happy about having more sex, and I feel like it helped strengthen our relationship,” explains 27-year old Garrett. 30-year old Emma says that “with Flex, I can still be swept up by the mood of occasions. And I’ve never had spotting or leaking.””

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The site claims that FLEX enables spontaneity:  “Women can wear FLEX for up to 12 hours meaning couples can anticipate the moment, not ruin it. Don’t worry about washing a towel, your sheets, or yourselves. Hello, pillow talk.” Cool.

Its mission statement extends outside the bedroom, though. Founders Lauren and Erika argue that stigma around periods is “driven by “lack of education” and the idea that “period talk should be left to women”.

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The mission statement from Flex’s website

It’s better than women screaming into the void while men put their hands over their ears. Plus, involving guys in discussions about periods can be both illuminating and pretty funny.