Trend description Gen Z consumers are shifting the conversation around periods and becoming more educated about their period and are looking for products that support them during this time. When consumers are starting to embrace their period more, they will expect for brands to do the same, and formulate new products and create new inventions that takes their natural cycle into consideration.
A recently conducted study of 2000 women aged 18-38, Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Cora, found that Millennials and Gen Z are shifting the conversation around periods, with Gen Z being the most open generation. The survey found that Gen Z respondents were around 10% more likely than millennials to take time off work, exercise less, engage in hobbies, and avoid household chores during their period. Furthermore, Gen Z is 10% more likely than Millennials to talk to friends about their period and the discomforts they face during that time.
Gen Z is redefining how culture talks about periods and have recently been destigmatizing periods by making them a more inclusive and comfortable space for young women. As this generation enters puberty, they will engage with feminine health products differently, with different values and views compared to millennials. The hashtag #periodtok currently has over 594 million views on TikTok and is a space where Gen Z users openly share advice and the struggles that they are facing during their period. Gen Z consumers are starting to educate themselves more around periods, and value the open and honest content that their peers can provide.
The cultural norm has shifted, and Gen Z consumers are starting to embrace their period and live according to their cycle. The study conducted by OnePoll found that even though 65% of respondents across all ages find that menstruation shame exists in society today, 62% feel that periods are a natural process. Their view is shifting the cultural norms around periods. According to the Menstrual Mark: Menstruation as Social Stigma, a study published in 2020 by the National Center for Biotechnology, discussing periods more openly can create a more positive attitude towards them. Furthermore, the report states that discussing it more openly will challenge the assumptions that women hate their period and want to eliminate it.
Understanding your menstrual cycle is a new way of living when it comes to listening and knowing your body. Cyclical living means living with the natural cycles in your body, such as the lunar cycle, menstrual cycle, and seasons. The femtech market, including the rise of period trackers, is estimated to be worth $50bn (£41bn) by 2025. The report "The Future of Cycle Care 2022" by the FemTech trend forecasting agency Ultraviolet Futures predicted that cycle self-care would continue to gain traction across the wellness sector, with cyclical innovations set to become commonplace everywhere, from beauty shelves to restaurants. As consumers embrace super cycling, wellness brands must understand how hormones affect the customer.
If nobody is the same, then no cycle is not the same either. According to WARC, 53% of Gen Z want brands to offer personalized, customized products. Customers will favor products that consider their bodies and cycle in 2023. Gen Z & Millennials will educate themselves more about their period and look for products that support them during this time. When consumers are starting to embrace their period more, they will expect for brands to do the same, and formulate new products and create new inventions that takes their natural cycle into consideration.
Sync with your cycle
In 2022, tech brands have started adopting a more holistic approach to menstruation by looking into how consumers can live in sync with their cycle. A period prediction feature on a wearable can make it easier for customers to live cyclically. There is a lot of innovation in the wearable industry that uses biometric data as an input for period prediction. However, skin temperature tracking is a relatively new phenomenon that big players have started to tap into. The skin temperature is linked to the menstrual cycle. It reveals clues about how consumers' hormones are changing and each state of the cycle due to the estrogen cooling the individual down and progesterone warming the individual up. Therefore, temperature tracking makes it easy for brands to know which phase of the cycle the individual is in.
The Oura Ring 3 has released its skin temperature period prediction beta to help users spot changes in their bodies during their cycle. The sensors pick up on fluctuations in the body temperature and make it possible to detect when the user's period is about to start and generate personalized health feedback based on the female cycle. This can be when to rest, train and sleep. "While many tracking tools exist, they base their predictions on numerical values like cycle length or your calendar rather than reading signals directly from your body as they change. Because the human body is ever-prone to change, this feature enables the ring to provide a three-day window for the start of your next period—a prediction that only becomes more accurate over time," Caroline Kryder, Oura's Science Communications Lead, tells Vogue.
The WHOOP wearable, a 24/7 personalized fitness and health coach, has rolled out a new feature called menstrual cycle coaching. The feature gives the users insight into how the phases of their cycle affect their sleep and gives them personalized insight into how to train with their cycle instead of against it. In some phases, users might be able to work out harder and take on the strain; in other phases, they might need more sleep. The wearable tracks the unique cycle, provides users with personalized insight that considers the body's day-to-day state and provides users with the knowledge to improve performance.
Lastly, the femtech company Femcy is an app that allows users to sync their diet and workout with their cycle for optimized efficacy. It helps customers control their daily health by getting daily insights and recommendations personalized for the individual to achieve better overall wellness. Furthermore, the brand offers women an online community focused on empowerment and sisterhood.
Picture: The Oura Ring
Picture: The Oura Ring
Period snacking and drinking
With Gen Z consumers embracing their period, and living in accordance with their cycle, they will start to expect brands to take their cycle into consideration. Food and drink brands have started to tap into seed syncing, functional eating, and drinking as a natural way of regulating periods and helping customers manage their hormone levels. Seed syncing can help make women's menstrual cycles less daunting.
Food Period is an NYC-based food company tapping into seed syncing as a natural way to regulate the hormone imbalances customers face when having their period. Food Period combines flax, sunflower, and pumpkins to regulate periods. Food Period delivers a dose of raw seeds slotted into different phases. The intention is for customers to take one scoop of their Moon Seed pack a day and switch the seed packaging after 14 days when entering a new phase.
According to a study conducted in 2022, just over 85% of the women surveyed said they had food cravings as premenstrual symptoms. Another company, PMS Bites, is tapping into cyclical eating and has created a snack that can satisfy the cravings guilt-free. The bite snack contains a blend of herbs that women commonly take for bloating, cramping, and irritability. The company has made healthy vegan raw chocolate balls that can be eaten when women are experiencing symptoms.
Beverage brands have started innovating products that consider the women's body's natural cycle. HotTea Mama, a UK tea brand, has launched a tea blend that naturally supports women during menstruation or menopause. Called "Take a pause" and "Over The Moon," these herbal blends consist of natural ingredients that help soothe menstruation symptoms.
The wellness brand Your Super has launched its "moon balance" blend, a mix of ayurvedic herbs and adaptogens specially designed for women. The nutrition drink supports women during all stages of their physical and can be drunk as a pink latte in the morning. It consists of six natural superfoods that have been used in traditional Ayurvedic medicine.
Picture: Your Super
Mood Swing Supplements
As consumers focus more on wellness and expect products to consider their natural body cycle, they will also expect for supplement to suit their exact needs. Supplement brands have started to formulate supplements that help support women throughout the mood swings that they face through their menstrual cycle. With the supplement industry growing, brands are offering supplements targeting menstrual symptoms like bloating and pain.
The modern wellness brand April has released its "All the feels" supplement, a PMS-supporting supplement. All the Feels contain a mix of ingredients that supports the customer through all the phases of their cycles. Botanicals such as Siberian ginseng, ginger root, and chaste berry are helping customers with their well-being and hormone balance throughout their period.
The company De Lune has created a supplement that helps women reduce their period symptoms. Their steady mood supplements consist of the natural ingredients saffron, magnesium, zinc, and adaptogens that help reduce PMS symptoms. Their cramp aid is a cramp relief supplement containing marigold, fenugreek, and other herbs. Their period rescue kit consists of both supplements to support customers in reducing multiple symptoms.
CDB for period pain
CDB products are becoming a popular wellness tool to relieve anxiety, improve sleep and reduce stress, or to be used as a part of a workout routine. A study conducted by Ypulse in collaboration with Forbes found that 40% of Gen Z and Millennials are interested in trying CDB products as a part of their workout or yoga routine.
However, CDB also has the potential to be used as an option for pain relief and support women during their period. Research on CDB's effectiveness for pain relief is limited. Still, a 2019 review of studies into CBD as a treatment for PMS suggested it can be helpful for pain relief and may benefit people who experience cramps during their period.
Beverage brands have started investigating how they can innovate products that take the women's body's natural cycle into consideration while using the benefits that CDB oil can offer. The brand Noriebud has created G-mint tea, a combination of dried ginger mint, mint leaf, and hemp-derived CDB oil, to provide customers with extra relief.
The company, Phasey, has created a variety of functional food depending on the customer's cycle. Their offerings vary from their seed cycle blends to their sex chocolate, period chocolate, and instant mood milk. Their period chocolate is CDB-infused and made with pure organic ingredients such as coconut oil and cacao butter. The CDB helps alleviate cramps and anxiety headaches and relax the body.
The wellness brand Elix also tapped into the cyclical nutrition market with its herbal and nutrition supplement "Cycle Balance," offered on a subscription base. It is a tailored blend of medicinal herbs that have proven to holistically support menstrual symptoms by treating the underlying imbalance. According to the brand, 93% of supplement users have reported a reduction in their menstrual symptoms.
Winged Women has created a pain-relieving CDB soft gel supplement with primrose, turmeric, and black seed oil. The soft gels combine CDB and CDG with herbal antioxidants intended to target female-specific pain relief, such as cramping and PMS pain relief.