Students Hand Out 'Tampon Cookies' To Protest Principal's Decision Not To Have Them In School Bathrooms

It's time to normalize the female menstrual cycle and increase education about them in schools.

principal, tampon, students Keshav Dulal / Stas Malyarevsky / Shutterstock; Twitter 

After a school principal denied students’ requests to provide tampons in the girls’ restrooms, they decided to retaliate in the best possible way. 

Now, the 12- and 13-year-old students are being praised as “amazing” and “creative,” and it is safe to say that they should pursue a career in activism. 

The students baked and handed out ‘tampon cookies’ at their school to protest their principal’s decision not to provide sanitary products in school restrooms. 

In 2019, American progressive activist, Ilyse Hogue, shared a photo of the baked goodies that were made and presented by seventh-grade students on her Twitter account. 


“My friend’s 7th-grader goes to a school where the kids organized for free tampons in the bathroom,” Hogue wrote. “The male principal said no because they would ‘abuse the privilege.’” 

The students decided to protest their principal’s ludicrous response by staging a cookie protest, where they handed out cookies that resembled used tampons. 

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The cookies appear to be sugar or shortbread, have strawberry frosting in the center to represent menstrual blood, and vanilla frosting on top to match the color of tampons. “Behold the tampon cookies!” Hogue added. 


The tweet received over 51,000 likes and over 7,000 shares, and many Twitter users praised the students for their actions. 

“So creative and awesome!” one user commented. “When I see tweets like this, I know that the kids are gonna be all right,” another user wrote.

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Other users slammed the principal for believing that tampons were a privilege and not a basic human right. 

“Hate to be the one to inform the principle that tampons are as basic hygiene to women as toilet paper or deodorant,” one user pointed out. “Because menstruation is such a privilege — especially for poor kids from working-class families,” another user sarcastically wrote. 


The issue has sparked a conversation surrounding period stigma, and the harsh reality that women and girls are often shamed when discussing their menstrual cycles.

There are those who are disgusted and uncomfortable by any period talk, and many menstruating individuals are made to feel embarrassed and ashamed to experience them in the first place.

According to a study commissioned by THINX, 58% of women reported feeling a sense of embarrassment by having a menstrual cycle, with 42% having experienced period shaming. Denying females the right to access basic sanitary products will not only perpetuate period shame but will result in a lack of education regarding the menstrual cycle.

This is crucial since most girls begin their periods when they are around the ages of 9-14, around the same time they start middle school, and around the same ages as the students who organized the protest. 

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However, other Twitter users believed that if tampons were provided for free in school restrooms, the students would use them for other reasons besides their periods. 

“Plenty of kids would abuse the privilege. I’ve taught in enough middle schools to know that the dispenser would be emptied on the first day and tampons would be covering everything,” one user shared. 

“We do provide supplies at the middle school (grades 6-8) where I teach, but unfortunately those supplies have to be lorded over because we often find them hanging in inappropriate places or used to clog sinks and toilets. Pads are often stuck on walls and mirrors. It’s awful,” another user commented. 

Despite the immaturity of a few students, there are many that would benefit from having free tampons in their school restrooms, especially if they suddenly start their period while in school and do not have any sanitary products on them. 


Others proposed that if a school does not want to provide free tampons in restrooms, they should at least make them available in the nurse's office to prevent mischievous students from misusing them. 

Considering that most women who get their periods spend an average of $120 per year on menstrual products, having free period tampons on hand in schools would be especially helpful to those who come from low-income families. 

While we still have a long way to go to combat period shaming and a fair distribution of period products, these students are clearly already making a difference in an effective and delicious way! 

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Megan Quinn is a writer at YourTango who covers entertainment and news, self, love, and relationships.