There's a nationwide tampon shortage and, for some reason, people are blaming Amy Schumer

Shelves are suddenly empty of tampons, and have been for months, but what does Schumer have to do with it?

By Kelly McClure

Nights & Weekends Editor

Published June 10, 2022 6:11PM (EDT)

Amy Schumer   (Getty/Valerie Macon)
Amy Schumer (Getty/Valerie Macon)

Inflation has led to a 10% increase in the cost of tampons over the past year and now there's a full-on nationwide shortage. But what does this have to do with Amy Schumer?

In 2020, a series of Tampax ads featuring Schumer debuted and a spokesperson for Procter & Gamble credits them with causing a significant increase in sales, telling a reporter for Time that "retail sales growth has exploded."

In response to the claim, Schumer posted a screenshot of an article on the shortage that used an image of her ad and commented "Whoa I don't even have a uterus."

RELATED: The discomfort of "Expecting Amy" continues the evolution of Schumer's unvarnished shtick

"What's been going on for a couple months is that organizations call us up and say, 'we need tampons,' and we go to our warehouse and there's nothing there," Dana Marlowe, the founder of I Support the Girls said in a quote to Time. 

"To put it bluntly, tampons are next to impossible to find. ... I would say it's been like this for a solid six months," says Michelle Wolfe, a radio host in Bozeman, Montana.

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While Procter & Gamble recognizes the shortage, their claim that Schumer's ad is the cause of it presents a further batch of questions that they don't have a clear answer for beyond statements that efforts are being made to fix it.

"The Tampax team is producing tampons 24/7 to meet the increased demand for our products," the company said in a statement to NBC. "We are working with our retail partners to maximize availability."

"In terms of the speed of the increase, it's the sharpest I've ever seen," Pricie Hanna, a raw materials consulting expert, said in a quote to Bloomberg. "At this point, people are scratching their heads and saying, 'This is something new." 

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By Kelly McClure

Kelly McClure is Salon's Nights and Weekends Editor covering daily news, politics and culture. Her work has been featured in Vulture, The A.V. Club, Vanity Fair, Cosmopolitan, Nylon, Vice, and elsewhere. She is the author of Something is Always Happening Somewhere.

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