A London-based feminine products company is facing backlash on social media after referring to its customers as “bleeders” rather than women.
“Most bleeders know how they are impacted by their period, but unfortunately aren’t in touch with their feelings and symptoms in the other phases of their cycle,” the company posted earlier this week on Instagram. “We’re here to change that.”
Instagram users quickly slammed the company for “dehumanizing” and “erasing” women with a term that many believed was derogatory toward women.
“I find the term ‘bleeders’ offensive. Why are you dehumanizing women – your client base?” one user wrote, according to Daily Mail. Another user wrote, “Bleeders? What is wrong with saying that girls and women get periods? As for symptoms, the menstrual cycle is not an illness! Beyond insulting.”
“As a copywriter I’m really genuinely bewildered by this,” another Instagram user wrote. “Are they some kind of naive startup with literally no clue into the minds of their demographic?! Did no one in the company consider that this language might be objectifying in the extreme? Did they do any market research?”
Other commenters appeared to call for a boycott of Yoppie products and the company’s CEO Daniella Peri ultimately clarified the comment.
“I recently referred to women as ‘bleeders’, but also in the same post used ‘women’,” Peri posted on Instagram. “I used the word ‘bleeders’ for our new campaign ‘Ride your cycle’ as I feel it best describes the point we are trying to make; that ‘menstrual health’ is so much more than the days you bleed. Yoppie is focused on being a brand welcoming all those who have a menstrual cycle – it’s what we do. But, being at the forefront of menstrual health, how we describe it and talk to our customers is fraught with challenges, mistakes and learnings. After all that’s part of being a genuine brand.”
Peri went on to explain that the company believes “all women, girls and people with a menstrual cycle should feel welcome at Yoppie” and also understands “there are many women who don’t have periods, and some people who menstruate who are not women.”
“We’re proud to host a safe space for anyone wishing to take charge of their menstrual health,” Peri said.
Several Instagram responded to the clarification by continuing calls to boycott Yoppie products.
“Will never buy your products,” one user wrote and another user responded with, “DO NOT CALL US BLEEDERS. So offensive.”
Peri did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox Business.