I launched The Pink Box last year, a subscription service for women’s menstruation essentials, with the vision of enabling women to conquer life, without taboo and stigma holding them back. We send goodies that help perk you up during those dull moments, satisfy food cravings (in a healthy way!) during periods, and de-stress your mind and body.

A question we are often asked is, “Why the pink box?” and with this, people usually mean to ask one of three things: ‘What is this box exactly?’, ‘Why did you choose to work on this?’, or ‘Why did you name it ‘pink’?’

Centuries ago pink was associated with boys if we go by history

Today, the color pink is associated strongly with girls and femininity. Historically, however, the colors pink and blue weren’t classified by gender until the 19th century. And when they did come to be gendered, pink was associated with boys! At the time, pink was perceived more as a ‘light red’ and so was seen as a color that depicted strength, aggression, and passion; all qualities tied to boys at the time. Whereas blue; seen as gentle, delicate, and peaceful; came to be associated with girls.

So yes, pink is girly and pink is feminine. But it’s never weak. And as seen earlier, pink is also the color of strength and passion. And I’ve never met a woman who wasn’t just that.

This line between pink and blue started to blur in the 20th century after the world wars. Western women wanted to give up darker colors they had to wear during the wars and embrace their womanhood. Seeing celebrities like Jackie Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe don pink definitely pushed together the relation between pink and femininity. Consumerism was also on the rise, and keeping this new trend in mind, more businesses started marketing feminine products in shades of pink.

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Slowly and steadily pink became a ‘girly’ color. Over time, however, pink along with many traditionally girly things started being perceived negatively and came to be associated with a certain naivety and weakness. I remember being younger and despising (or pretending to despise) the color pink in the hopes to be unlike other girls. Even today, expressing an affinity towards beautiful, pink, pastels can cause so many to roll their eyes. We all like to deny sexism but what other than our internalized misogyny could have caused us to think that a color, nothing but a mere reflection of light, was “uncool”?

We at The Pink Box choose pink because we want to change what the color has come to stand for. We want to embrace pink. We want to reclaim the color and rid it of its negative connotations. We’re tired of being shamed about our preferences, our femininity, and our biology. We want to talk about our womanhood and create safe spaces where women and girls feel free to talk about theirs. We want to talk about our periods and our health, without shame. We want to create awareness so that sexual health problems don’t go unnoticed. We want you to be in the pink of health!

So yes, pink is girly and pink is feminine. But it’s never weak. And as seen earlier, pink is also the color of strength and passion. And I’ve never met a woman who wasn’t just that.

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