By BR Tabatha
The Red Tide.
The Crimson Wave.
That Time of the Month.
I could go on, but I won't, because by now I'm sure you're getting the picture.
It's time to talk about our monthly. Or thereabouts. Because not everyone has the same experience with their periods. Some are short. Some are long. Some heavy. Some light. Some come like clockwork. Others turn up when they feel like it.
Periods. They're a fact of life for most of us. And they're something that can bring about all sorts of feelings. Positive and negative.
They fill some women with dread. Others with sadness. Some treat it like they do the dishes or washing - something that has to be dealt with and once it's done you don't think about it until you have to deal with it again. For others - those of us who are actively avoiding a case of the babies - the arrival of their period prompts a mini-celebration. But let's be honest, more often than not society tends not to have the most favourable feelings towards the bringer of blood.
One woman, however, believes we need to embrace our monthly visitor, to not treat it with such disdain. And her method of doing so is... rather untraditional.
Meet Yazmina Jade, a 'Leader in Reclaiming the Feminine through embodiment & sister hood' (according to her Instagram account).
Yazmina recently hit the news when she became known for giving herself a 'blood facial' - as some media outlets coined it (and we'll get to that soon enough).
What she was actually doing was embracing a part of her natural process that for years she had looked upon negatively; shaming and hating her period, until on her last bleed she felt drawn to her blood and wanted to connect with it through the ritual of painting it on her face.
'I was shocked how connected it made me feel with my body and womb,' she said via her Instagram account. 'It’s taken me years to realise that bleeding is a sacred ritual time, for women to go inward, to let go, to create, to use in powerful manifestation and to honour our womb power and MOTHER EARTH.. I have been drawn more and more to reconnecting with my body and especially the womb... We hold sacred wisdom with our wombs.'
On the surface it's easy to give the concept a big 'yeah, no', but when you read her reasoning behind her actions, well, while we're not up for doing it ourselves, we can see her point of view. As she points out so eloquently. 'It’s a time to reclaim our power through reclaiming that which comes naturally for us.. It’s a blessing. It’s powerful. It’s a fresh start each month. It’s a letting go. It’s connection to something greater.'
As for menstrual blood being used for a facial? The crew and I researched the benefits of menstrual blood on skin, and apart from our Google searches making us look like a bunch of serial killers in the making, we couldn't find much in the way of conclusive evidence that applying period blood to your skin would be of any benefit. As for the usual blood you might give in a blood drive or to a doctor when you're getting tests? Some say that the vampire facial - which takes fresh blood from the person getting the treatment, pops it in a centrifugal machine and separates the platelet-rich plasma from the blood, and then injects or microneedles it into the face - can contribute to collagen growth, and more youthful looking skin. As for menstrual blood being used topically? In this article on Health.com, New York dermatologist, Bruce E. Katz, MD, when talking about a moisturiser that is infused with plasma separated from blood, says that it would be of no use topically as the plasma would die right away, and therefore be no longer active. So with that in mind and considering the plasma appears to only be helpful when it's introduced into the skin, we're inclined to suspect that menstrual blood collected in the likes of a Mooncup would lose its freshness and any beneficial properties.