Some tampon curiosities: L & F [Lehn & Fink] Improved Tampons (U.S.A., 1930s-1940s?) Box, instructions, some tampons. From the company that made Lysol. - Medical tampons mentioned in newspapers, U.S.A., 1894-1921 - o.b. folder, Germany, early 1950s (tells what o.b. means!)
Tampon directory.
CONTRIBUTE to Humor, Words and expressions about menstruation and Would you stop menstruating if you could?
Some MUM site links:
MUM address & What does MUM mean? |
Email the museum |
Privacy on this site |
Who runs this museum?? |
Amazing women! |
Art of menstruation (and awesome ancient art of menstruation) |
Artists (non-menstrual) |
Asbestos |
Belts |
Bidets |
Birth control and religion |
Birth control drugs, old |
Birth control douche & sponges |
Founder bio |
Bly, Nellie |
MUM board |
Books: menstruation & menopause (& reviews) |
Cats |
Company booklets for girls (mostly) directory |
Contraception and religion |
Contraceptive drugs, old |
Contraceptive douche & sponges |
Costumes |
Menstrual cups |
Cup usage |
Dispensers |
Douches, pain, sprays |
Essay directory |
Examination, gynecological (pelvic) (short history) |
Extraction |
Facts-of-life booklets for girls |
Famous women in menstrual hygiene ads |
Feminine napkin, towel, pad directory |
Founder/director biography |
Gynecological topics by Dr. Soucasaux |
Humor |
Huts |
Links |
Masturbation |
Media coverage of MUM |
Menarche booklets for girls and parents |
Miscellaneous |
Museum future |
Norwegian menstruation exhibit |
Odor |
Olor |
Pad, towel, napkin directory |
Patent medicine |
Poetry directory |
Products, some current |
Puberty booklets for girls and parents|
Religion |
Religión y menstruación |
Your remedies for menstrual discomfort |
Menstrual products safety |
Sanitary napkin, towel, pad directory |
Seguridad de productos para la menstruación |
Science |
Shame |
Slapping, menstrual |
Sponges |
Synchrony |
Tampon directory |
Early tampons |
Teen ads directory |
Tour of the former museum (video) |
Towel, pad, sanitary napkin directory |
Underpants & panties directory |
Videos, films directory |
Words and expressions about menstruation |
Would you stop menstruating if you could? |
What did women do about menstruation in the past? |
Washable pads |
Read 10 years (1996-2006) of articles and Letters to Your MUM on this site.
Leer la versión en español de los siguientes temas: Anticoncepción y religión, Breve reseña - Olor - Religión y menstruación - Seguridad de productos para la menstruación.


St Michael super menstrual tampons, 1972 (Marks & Spencer, U.K.)
compared with
Tampax super tampons, 1972

Tampax, the first menstrual tampon with an applicator, has been the number one tampon in America for decades and quite possibly the first commercial menstrual tampon in Europe.

It has had its imitators such as these impostors here and here. And I wonder if St Michael tampons attracted Tampax's attention not because of similarities in packaging - it's very different with minor exceptions - but because of the design of the tampon itself, especially its cardboard tube. I have no evidence that Tampax was concerned about this but it's worth looking at, which I do in the following pages. All companies watch for imitators and patent violators.

"St Michael" - English English (so to speak) puts no period after abbreviations - is a strange name for such a female product. Ironic, too, is the fact that the Catholic Church early on opposed Tampax and tampons in general, virginity and the evil of fiddling with the user's private parts being among the concerns - and these are concerns for some women today.

But Wikipedia calls the saint "the field commander of the Army of God," the "patron saint of the warrior." In this case the enemy is menstruation.

At least through its Web site, Marks & Spencer no longer offers tampons. The company was located on Baker Street; I could have used Sherlock Holmes's help with this mystery but he would have been spooked by the subject. Maybe Dr. Watson. Or today's Irregulars, speaking of menstruation.

Tampon directory.

I thank the former Tambrands, once maker of Tampax tampons, for donating both boxes!
Below: The box measures 3 5/16 x 4 7/8 x 5 11/16" (8.4 x 12.5 x 6.8 cm).
Someone at Tambrands stuck on the sticker with the notations
Rec'd 1[I?] -520; 1[I?] - R20
KWAST to ERS Aug 15, 72
Below: The smaller sides are the same except the flowers vary slightly.
Below: This lacks the MARKS & SPENCER, etc., of the above side, and the flowers are a bit different.
Below: The box top. 28 p probably means 28 pence, the price.
Below: The bottom. The garish flowers remind me of the hippies of the 1970s, this very era. Flowers, of course, are often associated with menstruation, almost ironically since they usually invoke the opposite reaction that menstrual blood does. But read the historical basis of the association.

Below: The Tampax box. I show it upside down so you can read the
date someone at Tambrands wrote on it without standing on your head.
It reads
Apr[I believe] 20-72
The other side, in the same hand, reads
[unreadable, probably an initial]
Because this article is really about St Michael tampons, I'm not
putting more scans of the Tampax material except the few you
see on the following pages.

NEXT | box - instructions - the tampon
Some tampon curiosities: L & F [Lehn & Fink] Improved Tampons (U.S.A., 1930s-1940s?) Box, instructions, some tampons. From the company that made Lysol. - Medical tampons mentioned in newspapers, U.S.A., 1894-1921 - o.b. folder, Germany, early 1950s (tells what o.b. means!)

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