We’re getting a period emoji! Folks, this is the most exciting news since Ariana Grande told us she was releasing her second full album in a six month timeframe. Unicode just shared the list of new emojis that are coming out with the next iPhone update, and they include a tiny red drop of blood to represent menstruation. Cute, simple, and totally ground-breaking. When does the period emoji come out? The emoji, along with 229 other designs, will hit our phones later this year. It’s about time.
The reality is, it’s 2019 and we’re living in a culture where periods can still be somewhat taboo, and this seems like a huge step toward making a change. Giving periods a super public symbol like an emoji is a great reminder that half the population has them and we should clearly be able to talk about that. Why are we stigmatizing something that is so universal and so natural for the human body? No wonder it can be scary to get your period for the first time. It’s so important that young people know how their bodies work and how their hormones change during each part of their cycle. Power to the period — I’m totally obsessed with this new emoji!
Turns out, this idea isn’t new. In 2017, the British non-profit Plan International UK launched a campaign to try to make the period emoji a reality. The group ran a survey and discovered that women and girls still feel shame about discussing their periods with other people — and the group knew immediately that this needed to change. Almost 55,000 people supported the campaign by voting on the organization's website for their favorite design to become the next official emoji. Now, almost two years later, this vision is becoming a reality!
“The inclusion of an emoji which can express what 800 million women around the world are experiencing every month is a huge step towards normalising periods and smashing the stigma which surrounds them,” Lucy Russell, Head of Girls' Rights and Youth at Plan International UK, tells Elite Daily in a statement. An emoji is a powerful cultural symbol that appears all over social media, and hopefully this new period emoji will help women feel empowered to embrace their periods — because after all, we all have them! Menstruation is a sign of a healthy female body and is nothing to be ashamed of.
Carmen Barlow, Digital Strategy and Development Manager at Plan International UK, also notes how groundbreaking this change will be. “For an organisation like Unicode to recognise that menstruation should be represented in this new global language is a huge step towards breaking down a global culture of shame around periods,” she says. Props to Unicode for noticing this valuable cause and taking steps to change the culture. Your period is a normal part of life, and every single one of us shares your pain (literally and figuratively).
Get ready, 2019, because this new emoji is about to change the world. Period.