Kotex: SOS Button

Kotex created a way for women to access help from other women, if they needed it during their period. Creating a real-world solution in a market where talking about menstruation is still often seen as taboo.

Project Overview


The feminine hygiene products market in Russia has two distinct market leaders, with Kotex fighting for 4th place. Brand consideration in this sector is formed at a young age – 85% of young women continue to buy the first brand they use.

Kotex needed to increase purchase consideration and its market share to try and close the gap on the market leaders, by creating value for its consumers not just via promotions and discounts like other brands.

To grow market share in this category, a brand needs to create a strong emotional connection with its audience. However, in Russia, menstruation is still a taboo subject for open conversation and therefore mass communication is limited and generic.

Insights and Idea

Kotex has been working to challenge the taboo of talking about periods in recent years and connect with its audience by creating a community dedicated to menstruation inside Russia’s biggest social network, vKontakte.                                                    

This community provides a discreet, supportive environment for more than half of all young women in Russia to discuss menstruation and access tools like the Kotex period tracker app.

But Kotex wanted to help women in the real world too.

Being caught off guard by your period with no sanitary products can be distressing and embarrassing, especially if you are on your own. In Russia, as menstruation is still a taboo subject for conversation, it makes it even harder to ask for help when you need it most.

What if we could bring our Kotex community together to help each other when they were in need?

So, we created the Kotex SOS button.


The Kotex ecosystem and period tracker app has enabled Kotex to develop 1-2-1 communications with women in more personal and relevant ways, understand their needs and transform the community into a real support network.

We knew that our community would step up to help each other in need if we provided them with the tools to achieve this.

We created the SOS button in the Kotex Period Tracker app to help them. Anyone caught off-guard by their period with no sanitary products could instantly reach out to the community for help by sending out an SOS alert.

With one tap, a woman caught off guard by her period can send an SOS message to women in the Kotex community nearby to let them know that she needs help. Using geo-location, those nearby get an alert on their mobile phone and can instantly reply to let her know they can help by giving them a sanitary product.

In the event that there is no-one available to help within a short time, the SOS request transfers to the rapid delivery service, Samokat. So, in a single click, she can order the pad she needs, and have it delivered within 15 minutes, wherever she is.

A seamless and discreet solution to a universal problem for women.


Our SOS button resonated with our community and in the first 3 months:

  • Over 35,000 young women responded to SOS alerts from women in need
  • 5000+ new friendships started following an SOS call for help
  • Kotex broke its all-time market share record (see confidential info for details)
  • The only growing brand in a decreasing market.

Kotex solved a real-world problem for women in Russia and is continuing its fight to normalise periods.

Awards & recognition
Cannes Lions 2021
Cannes Lions 2021 Media Lions Shortlist

We're also proud of...