Women have found ways of managing their periods dating as far back as the ancient Egyptians and Greeks – and those solutions have only gotten more advanced and convenient as medical science and human industriousness have flourished. The tampon as we know it today was first invented in 1929 by Dr. Earle Haas. Seven years later, Denver businesswoman Gertrude Tenderich bought the patent and founded Tampax Sales Corporation – where she served as president. Learn more below about how Tampax evolved to help women around the world be happier, healthier, and more confident.
March 7, 1936
Tampax Incorporated is formally chartered under the laws of the state of Delaware.
July 26, 1936
The very first Tampax ad appears in American Weekly.
Physician Harry S. Sackren conducts a comprehensive study of tampons, concluding that Tampax products are safe and easy to use, as well as generally regarded favorably by women who use them.
Tampax’s first full-time educational consultant, Mabel Mathews, establishes the company’s first formal educational department.
Faced with eviction from their factory following a sale to Johnson & Johnson, Tampax moves operations from New Jersey to a textile mill in Three Rivers, Massachusetts.
Tampax begins producing cotton bandages and surgical dressings for the U.S. military along side tampon production during World War II.
With millions of women entering the workforce and a period of unprecedented wartime prosperity, Tampax experiences explosive sales growth.
Tampax builds new production facilities, expands existing ones, and launches international manufacturing subsidiaries to keep up with demand.
The “Tampax family” pulls together to recover from the devastation of Hurricane Diane.
As Playtex, Kimberly-Clark, and Johnson & Johnson emerge as direct competitors to Tampax, the tampon market gets considerably fiercer.
Medical reports begin discussing toxic shock syndrome (TSS) and its harmful effects to menstruating women. After CDC testing shows Tampax to be among the safest options on the market, Tampax launches an education campaign to inform consumers about TSS.
Tampax introduces Maxithins, a revolutionary new pad so thin that it could be folded for easy storage, yet absorbent enough to provide full-size pad protection.
Edwin H. Shutt, Jr., newly appointed president of Tampax, begins rapidly expanding product offerings through acquisition and development.
Tampax celebrates its 50th anniversary and boasts a market share of over 60% in the U.S. in addition to shipping nearly half of all retail units to markets beyond the U.S.
Tampax is purchased by Procter & Gamble, and continues to maintain a dominant share in the U.S. tampon market through the present day.
Tampax introduces the Pearl line of products, featuring a plastic applicator and rounded tip, which quickly becomes a staple of the Tampax family.
Tampax and Always team up to create the Radiant collection – a line of tampons and pads that feature discreet packaging.
Tampax releases Pocket Pearl – bringing the powerful protection of full-sized Pearl tampons to a pocket-sized applicator.
Today, Tampax is even more committed than ever to educating women and girls around the world about tampons and menstrual health.
In fact, you could say we’re just getting started!