We don't mention it often in the U.S., but fistula is a huge problem worldwide. Fistula is a health condition in which prolonged obstructed labor creates a hole between the vagina and rectum or bladder and is most common in women without access to health care. Most women who are affected by fistula have given birth in their late teens or early adulthood, so they have to deal with the condition their entire lives.
Underwear company Icon, a new line from THINX, is hoping to raise awareness for the issue by making pee-proof undies to take away the shame of having bladder control problems. You might remember THINX - it's the period-proof underwear line that's made a lot of waves this year (remember those subway ads?). Icon's leak-proof panties are available on the Icon website for $30 to $34 each.
In general, it's likely that 18 percent of women ages 18 to 34 will experience light bladder leaks, so the problem is a lot closer to home than you might think. And should the time come when you need them, wearing Icon panties is actually helping to solve the problem: A portion of every purchase will be donated to the Fistula Foundation.
"[Fistula is] a real problem that over a million women are dealing with around the world," says Icon CEO and founder Miki Agrawal. "We won the lottery of life as women born in America. That reality could have been ours. To show empathy and support for women who have had little to no control of their lives is integral in creating a better, more hopeful world."
We love that that Miki and her team are raising awareness and support for this huge women's health issue!
"We created Icon because we wanted to offer girls and women like us the ability to feel as powerful and confident without having to wear bulky disposables ever again," says Miki. "A simple product like a pair of underwear with hidden technology can completely transform the way they feel about themselves."