What do your vagina and your boss have to do with each other?

You know those days when you’re feeling down at work, feeling unappreciated, not entirely sure that you’re on the right path anyway? You look around your little work space, dejected, wanting some recognition for everything you put into your company? If nothing else, even a raise would do it for you. It’s not emotional validation, but it is certainly something tangible to make it clear that you make a difference in the world.

It’s not too much to ask, is it?

If you’re female, Summer’s Eve certainly doesn’t think so, and they’ve even got you covered. (Or at least Summer’s Eve circa 2010.) A few years ago, Summer’s Eve put a full page advertisement in Women’s Day magazine that gave hilarious advice to women: If you want a raise, wash your vagina first.

Here’s the full page ad:


And here’s an up-close picture of the first step:


This advertisement recently went viral amongst my sex educator buddies (via Daily Kos) and much hilarity ensued.

All of that chatter reminded me of a certain lesson plan in Positive Images:

“DOWN THERE”: How to Use an Insertive Method

By the end of this lesson, participants will be able to:

  1. Examine knowledge and attitudes that could affect a person’s ability to use contraceptives that require inserting something into the vagina.
  2. Explain the anatomy of the vagina and how insertive methods fit and work inside the vagina.
  3. Consider ways a person could learn how to use insertive methods.

Anyone who has demonstrated vaginal methods of contraception has witnessed negative responses to the idea of inserting a contraceptive device. For many, the vagina is unknown territory and the idea of touching the genitals in order to use an insertive method (including the female condom, diaphragm, cervical cap or spermicide) is very uncomfortable. This lesson utilizes a “bingo” game to initiate discussion about the knowledge and attitudes that could affect a person’s ability to use these methods. A diagram helps participants understand exactly how to use insertive methods.


This fun little lesson plan introduces many of the misconceptions around vaginas and vulvas – including that they are dirty and thus need to be washed – in a game of bingo. Moving around the room, participants get people to sign their bingo card if they say yes to a number of questions, including:

  • Are you someone who learned the correct names for the genital organs when you were a small child?
  • Are you someone who knows how long the average vagina is?
  • Are you someone who has heard that the vagina is dirty or smelly?

And, delightfully:

  • Are you someone who feels a little uncomfortable doing this activity?

The lesson plan goes on to de-bunk the myths, provide information about the questions, and ultimately educate about insertive methods like diaphragms. It’s fun, interactive, and educational.

And I wish the Women’s Day advertising team had known a little more about the vagina before making this ad.