How Well Do You Know The History Of Menstruation Products?

Many of us have had the moment — whether of fear, excitement, frustration, overwhelmedness, or all of the above — when we got our first periods. Along with it came instruction from various parties, whether parental figures or in advertising and media, about what we’re supposed to do about it (and how we’re supposed to feel about it). But has it always been this way? Many of us menstruate, but what do we even know about the things we use to manage our periods? What did people used to do? In our final trivia quiz from our Trivial Cahoots series, let’s test our knowledge about the things we bleed into (and why) — and maybe learn some things along the way! Tell me your answers in the comments, and if you’re comfortable and its relevant to you, share how you deal with your period today in 2018!

menstrual items collage


  • 8. What is this? (Courtesy of the Museum of Menstruation)

  • 12. How about the first modern menstrual cup (similar to the Diva or Moon cups you may use today?)

  • 14. What was one of the first advertised uses for Lysol?

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Raquel is a Brazilian-American designer and writer. She's from Austin, TX but she lives in Washington, D.C., and she's mostly ok with that. She’s fluent in emoji, gets emotional about fonts, and is always down to photoshop something weird. Find her at basically all hours on twitter @raqueldesigns and occasionally around the rest of the internet.

Raquel has written 23 articles for us.


  1. 44%, very informative, thank you Raquel.

    I think the 21st century version of ‘guilty of that one neglect that ruins many marriages’ is ‘most girls don’t bother with (insert unnecessary regime/product here), but it will really make you stand out and get noticed!’

    To these advertisers I say: shhhhhhh.

  2. Great quiz! Menstrual history is fascinating and I love that, as an adult, I finally have pals that are comfortable talking about periods. Period stories are so interesting and I’m grateful to Mey for having written this piece, which introduced me to The Mean Magenta (

    I’ve been using cloth pads since I was about 21. That’s almost a decade now and I love them!

  3. What a fun quiz! My last year of college I got menstrual cup and cloth pads and I love them! I’ve been using them over fifteen years.

    Fun (though not at the time) story. Someone in middle school said I used bark for a pad. I was crunchy but not that crunchy. And while most of me was mortified, a small part thought how impractical. Moss would be much more absorbent.

  4. Nice work!
    Quiz Grade: E
    Score: 10
    Percentage: 56%

    This was really interesting! I remember learning how the Samaritans helpline was founded in London because someone found out that a girl started her period and ended her life because she didn’t know what was happening.

    So much shame and lack of information for so long…

  5. Quiz Grade: D
    Score: 12
    Percentage: 67%

    Super interesting quiz. I learned a lot

  6. Quiz Grade: C
    Score: 13
    Percentage: 72%

    Diva Cup + Dear Kate underwears or cloth pads!

  7. Nice work!
    Quiz Grade: D
    Score: 11
    Percentage: 61%

    I haven’t had my period in 7 months (please, please let this be the start of menopause- I’m so tired of perimenopause). I used to use tampons.

  8. Quiz Grade: A
    Score: 18
    Percentage: 100%

    Not even the trick question that was #6 caught me.
    Y’hear? Loose from that noose. *finger guns*

    BOOYAH points for Ravenclaw and best part I’m high on benadryl rn.

Comments are closed.