Campaign Spotlight: Hey Girls Launches UNsanitary Product Range to Raise “Period Poverty” Awareness with adam&eveDDB and The Big Issue


UNITED KINGDOM – Social enterprise Hey Girls, adam&eveDDB and The Big Issue have come together to launch a national campaign to raise awareness of the shocking extent of period poverty in the UK.

The campaign centres around a new brand called ‘UNsanitary’, so named as 1 in 10 girls and young women are regularly forced to use unsanitary items in place of real sanitary products, because they cannot afford it.

UNsanitary Launch Film

The UNsanitary range, created by adam&eveDDB, encompasses real products, available at pop-ups in selected ASDA stores on Saturday 15th February.

At first glance, the UNsanitary range resembles authentic products that follow the normal category cues. However, on closer inspection, shoppers see that they contain items representing some of the real unsanitary items girls are often forced to use -- socks, newspaper and loo roll. The products were not actually for sale.

The UNsanitary brand, Hey Girls’ biggest campaign to date, is being supported by a consumer campaign in partnership with 3 Monkeys Zeno and Clear Channel.

3 Monkeys Zeno -- working with some of its partners, Markettiers, Run Ragged and Opinium, created a full PR launch plan comprising influencer social media support from people such as Georgie Swallow and Sheri Scott, broadcast, and full media announcement. In collaboration with Clear Channel, the campaign, including some of the influencer content will be displayed across full motion digital advertising screens in shopping malls nationwide and on their Storm site in London.

To help drive awareness and education, The Big Issue have created a ground-breaking special edition, which includes a 24- page special mini-magazine about periods, menstrual products, poverty, activism, the environment – and what we can all do to make a big difference by taking little steps.

The exclusive edition is a UK- first in the publishing world, the first of its kind, dedicating an entire publication to the issue of period poverty. For many years The Big Issue has championed organisations that tackle period poverty, and through social investment arm, Big Issue Invest, they have supported Hey Girls in their remarkable growth.

In addition to the national distribution from The Big Issue vendors, Hey Girls have recruited their own community partners, who are getting behind the campaign by distributing the publication. For every copy sold through their community partners, Hey Girls will be donating a product to someone in need.

All of the communication links through to the UNsanitary website where Hey Girls and the UNsanitary launch story is revealed.

Celia Hodson, founder of Hey Girls, said: “We created ‘UNsanitary’ to provoke awareness about the shocking extent of period poverty in the UK. Progress is being made, but we knew we needed to do something drastic for large numbers of people to take notice of what so many women and girls are going through. We hope the campaign will rally businesses and the government to instigate more radical changes.”

The mini-magazine, which will be included within the regular The Big Issue edition will be on sale from vendors across the UK from Monday (17th February).



Client: Hey Girls 

Project/Campaign name: UNsanitary 

First Air Date: 15th February 2020

Chief Creative Officer: Rick Brim           

Executive Creative Director/s: Ant Nelson & Mike Sutherland

Creative/s: Zoe Nash & Sali Horsey

Content Creatives: Helena Hamilton, Francesca Jaconelli

Agency producer/s: Nicola Applegate

Agency assistant producer: Jake Graham

Chief Strategy Officer: Martin Beverley

Head of Planning: Milla McPhee

CEO: Mat Goff

Managing partner/s: Charlotte Cook

Account Director/s: Kathryn Gooding

Account Executive/s: Jemima St Aubyn

Head of Design: Alex Fairman

Designer: Mitch Gibbons

Artworker: Sam Stabler                          

Retouching: Dan Jackson, Mark Henry, Charlie Townsend                      

Motion Designer: Edward Christie, Tom Lockwood, Hashir Khan

Head of Delivery: Brett Kelsey 


Media Agency: Clear Channel

PR agency: 3 Monkeys Zeno

Production Company: Twenty Twenty

Producer: Frede Spencer

Director: Em Cole

Editing Company: cain&abel

Editor: Betty Lishmund, James Ireland, Ben Infantino

Post Production: Tom Lockwood, Jamie Wathen

Post Producer: Nicola Shanks, Aleksandra Bulkowska, Greda Aleksandraviciute

Colourist: Ben Infantino

Photographer: Em Cole

Photographic Agent: Twenty Twenty

Retouching: Dan Jackson, Mark Henry, Charlie Townsend

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