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Brands need to play a role to remove the taboo from menopause and perimenopause

With International Women’s Day on the horizon, on Wednesday March 8, it’s time to #EmbraceEquity for women around the world when it comes to the menopause. Brands have the opportunity to shift the culture of taboo to empowerment for women.

Our research* found 65% of women don’t even realise that the symptoms they’re suffering are due to perimenopause.

It’s indicative of the lack of societal equity for women that over half of women nearing the age of menopause are unaware of the impacts of menopause and don’t know the reason for their symptoms.

In addition, too many suffer in silence. Such has been the lack of education, discussion and ownership around menopause, despite it impacting half the population.

Causing symptoms such as anxiety, mood swings, brain fog, hot flushes and irregular periods, perimenopause puts strain on relationships, work and day-to-day life – leaving many women overwhelmed.

While efforts have been made to raise awareness, many still reach this stage of life completely unprepared and feeling isolated.

In fact, most women don’t even begin to talk about the subject until they’re significantly struggling, and will often find other health issues to blame for feeling “under the weather” before accepting it. It shouldn’t be that way.

At Catalyx, we believe there is a huge opportunity for credible brands to own this space, become a champion and empower women to navigate their journey, feel in control, and emotionally seen – and we’ve recently completed the research to prove it.

Brands can shine a light on women’s health

As one of the respondents spelt out during our recent qualitative deep dive on the topic for an international vitamins and supplements brand:

“I can’t think of any brands tackling this. I honestly don’t think most of society realises how much it can affect you.”

While the physical and emotional changes women go through during perimenopause put a strain on their general well-being, we found that existing market solutions are plain, sterile and functional only; they bring little comfort in this emotionally loaded time.

Traditionally, brands in this space have not been listening to women’s emotional needs or multifunctional needs as much as they could. Finding the right treatment can often take time, requiring trial and error and inevitably creating frustration – but this shouldn’t be the case. Why shouldn’t an off-the-shelf menopause product feel part of an uplifting lifestyle movement for women, rather than a clinical reminder of change?

Meanwhile brands in other categories haven’t been pushing women’s equity in society by playing a role of educational empowerment and cultural awareness.

This means there are huge opportunities for new brands to get involved and own the space. It’s happened with body positivity, and now it’s time for brands to shift culture for menopause to be understood and equity to be achieved.

Our insight recommends the market needs to move towards empowering and educating both women and men about menopause fast.

Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be sharing some of the key insights from our menopause case study and shining a light on the many reasons we should be losing the taboo around this universally important women’s health topic. Let’s talk.

* Crowdsourced research in Australia

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