Un­der­wear, per­sonal lubri­cant?

Calgary Herald New Condos - - Weekend Life -

I tried not to take it per­son­ally when the padded panties ar­rived in my mailbox at work. This could hap­pen to other re­porters … right?

The ac­com­pa­ny­ing bumf says DRC Un­der­wear (named for the ini­tials of the three women be­hind the made-in-Que­bec prod­uct) can ab­sorb urine from in­con­ti­nence in a reg­u­lar-look­ing pair of panties. They’re de­signed to help women who are hav­ing a leaky time due to preg­nancy, child­birth, weight gain, hor­monal changes or even play­ing sports.

The young de­sign­ers, Raquel Tulk and Chanelle O’Shea, have won awards for their ideas, and were fea­tured en­trepreneurs on the French ver­sion of the TV show Drag­ons’ Den, where they found a key in­vestor and part­ner.

That’s all great. But why send them to me?

Sure, I’ve writ­ten about ex­er­cises de­vel­oped by a gy­ne­col­o­gist that are touted as an ad­vance­ment on tra­di­tional Kegels for strength­en­ing mus­cles down there. Wait a minute — guilty as charged.

So about the un­der­wear: They’re not like the enor­mous knick­ers fa­mously sported by Bridget Jones. In fact, they look bet­ter than av­er­age de­spite the built-in pad­ding. They’re pretty com­fort­able, too, at least com­pared to the host of ridicu- Mae lubri­cant is sold in Rex­all, Lon­don Drugs or at by­damiva. com. DRC un­der­wear is sold on­line at dr­cun­der­wear.com. lous un­der­gar­ments women wear in the hopes of keep­ing their phys­i­cal short­com­ings to them­selves. I’m look­ing at you, Spanx.

But then came the Toronto-based Damiva team with their vagi­nal lubri­cant, Mae.

OK, so I’ve re­ported on stud­ies about vagi­nal dry­ness among menopausal women. Surely, I can’t be the only one talk­ing about it.

For­mer big pharma sci­en­tists Chia Chia Sun and Gardiner Smith — part­ners in busi­ness and life — came up with the idea of help­ing women mois­tur­ize vagi­nal tis­sue by in­sert­ing bul­let-shaped “ovules” made of in­gre­di­ents like co­coa but­ter and vi­ta­min E oil as an al­ter­na­tive to lu­bri­cants con­tain­ing parabens — con­tro­ver­sial cos­metic preser­va­tives — or dry­ing al­co­hols and pe­tro­leum prod­ucts.

Sun also ap­peared on Drag­ons’ Den, prompt­ing ex­cru­ci­at­ing dis­com­fort among the Drag­ons.

The com­pany em­ploys cheeky ad lines like “Enough beat­ing around the bush. Let’s talk about your vag­ina.”

The pair made for an en­ter­tain­ing in­ter­view.

Meet­ing women across the coun­try has ex­posed them to in­ti­mate de­tails that most peo­ple would rather not hear.

Hand­ing out sam­ples in a drug­store one day, Sun ap­proached an el­e­gant-look­ing woman with a Euro­pean ac­cent who de­clined her of­fer say­ing, “I have turned the faucet off.”

“They don’t un­der­stand that the vag­ina is like any other or­gan that needs ex­er­cise,” says Sun. “It’s use it or lose it.”

That’s par­tic­u­larly rel­e­vant in an era when women are start­ing new re­la­tion­ships in their 50s and 60s — or try­ing to keep their ex­ist­ing ones from the grave.

“It’s awk­ward to talk about it,” Smith says, “but it’s worse not to talk about it.”

Sun summed up her views this way: “The sup­pres­sion of dis­cus­sion of these topics makes the prob­lem worse. If women aren’t talk­ing about vagi­nal dry­ness with each other or their doc­tors then they’ll ex­pe­ri­ence it and won’t have any other choice but to turn the faucet off.”

I can’t wait to see what’s in my mailbox next.

DRC Un­der­wear

DRC Un­der­wear can ab­sorb urine from in­con­ti­nence in a reg­u­lar-look­ing pair of panties.

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