New Delhi: Gender discrimination stops us from knowing ourselves at best. However, there are lots of feminine products that were actually invented for males. It proves that these stereotypes are pointless when the preference of products is a switch in between genders.
1. Disposal Sanitary Napkins
Disposal Sanitary Napkins were invented by one of the nurses present on the battlefield during World War I in France. It was inspired by Ben Franklin's invention of a bandage to take care of extreme bleeding caused by buckshot wounds. It was absorbent, easily disposable, and made by the material simply available on a battleground like wood pulp. During the war, only American nurses started using these pads and found a new way to handle their menstrual flow. Later on, in 1888, Kotex produced and commercially advertised the product as sanitary napkins for women.
2. High Heels
High Heels are loved by especially young females and are used in the fashion industry, but they were originally created for men for different reasons. It was made for butchers to put on for keeping their feet clean by blood coming out because of slaughtering of animals. In the 10th century, Persian soldiers also used high heels to maintain balance and lock their feet in their stirrups while riding horses and attacking and shooting their enemies. In the 17th century, European men started wearing heels to look taller and more intimidating. Lastly, styles of wearing heels were adopted by women when most of them used while wearing skirts that reached their ankles. Heels helped to raise their feet to hide the rear part of their legs under the skirt and gave an impression of smaller feet.
Stockings are largely available in the market for women, but firstly it was made for men to wear since the 9th century. It was only in the 18th century when women started wearing it. Stockings took over from masculine to feminine products totally from the 16th to 20th century.
Skirts are one of the comfortable clothes preferred by women but in earlier times soldiers used to wear skirts on battlegrounds as it allowed them to move around and run with freedom. It also prevented overheating caused by armour. Most clothing ideas were also inspired by skirts with the simple motive of moving with freedom.
5. Crop Top
The main purpose behind crop tops in the 1940s was to save fabric during the war and this garment was purely invented by men for men to wear. Crop top fashion began in the early 70s by male bodybuilders, which prevented them from training shirtless. Later on, women adopted it as a summer trend to wear it with pairs of high waist jeans and skirts.
Hence, products that originated in the past manifest that categorising things into 'masculine' and 'feminine' limits the possibilities of success and causes less chances of living life with freedom.