Who are Dylan Mulvaney and Jeffrey Marsh? Tampax blowup explained

Bruno Cooke November 24, 2022
Who are Dylan Mulvaney and Jeffrey Marsh? Tampax blowup explained

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A Tampax tweet from November 21, 2022, has blown up beyond anything the social media manager is likely to have expected, and that prompted the recirculation of unconfirmed rumors that the brand has a sponsorship or ambassadorship deal with trans influencers Dylan Mulvaney and Jeffrey Marsh.

Tampax tweeted “You’re in their DMs. We’re in them. We are not the same.”

The tweet has been liked almost 370K times. Nearly 48K people have retweeted it. 

And Tampax itself has continued the conversation, quipping with fellow Procter & Gamble brand Always that they had been “saving” the tweet “since last period.”

Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for Prime Video

Who are Dylan Mulvaney and Jeffrey Marsh?

Mulvaney self-identifies as a trans actress, comedian and content creator. She uses she and they pronouns, is 25 years old, and hails from San Diego.

She began her professional acting career in 2015 at the age of 18 or 19, and has since appeared on episodes of several podcasts, including Ulta’s biweekly The Beauty Of podcast, and Linda Bailey Walsh’s Hatedate.

Marsh, meanwhile, is a 45-year-old social media influencer, nonbinary activist and regular speaker on LGBTQ+ issues. They grew up in rural Pennsylvania and moved to New York to pursue a career in cabaret performance before becoming, it’s fair to say, an Internet celebrity.

According to Marsh’s website, Jeffrey was the first celebrity activist to use they/them pronouns to appear on national television in the US. That was in 2016; they appeared on Newsmax for an interview.

Photo by Jonathan Leibson/Getty Images for GLSEN

Why are Mulvaney and Marsh coming up amid conversations about Tampax?

On November 21, 2022, Tampax posted a tweet that has since accrued more than a third of a million likes on the social media platform.

The backlash it has received has made headlines in the New York Post and Jezebel, plus other outlets. Critics call the tweet inappropriate and argue it “sexualizes” women who use Tampax’s products.

Offended people have started using the hashtag “#BoycottTampax” and urging others to stop buying products the brand makes and sells. Tampax makes period products. 

Marsh wrote on Instagram just over two years ago that they are worn by trans men as well as by women. Mulvaney has also posted on social media in the past about using tampons and other period products. Tampax has also tweeted about it not being exclusively women that have periods. 

Internet users think Dylan Mulvaney and Jeffrey Marsh have a sponsorship deal with Tampax

The claim that the two LGBT influencers have a sponsorship deal with Tampax is nothing new. In June this year, a tweet that made reference to it received nearly 7.3K likes.

“You literally couldn’t make this up,” the user wrote, taking issue with the notion that Mulvaney and/or Marsh might have a business relationship with a period products brand. “Two more companies off my list then,” they added, referring to Always and Tampax.

Others have criticized the “#BoycottTampax” Twitter movement. “Fed up” with such comments, one wrote on Twitter. “They (Tampax) sponsor a trans woman (Dylan Mulvaney) because she was once asked in a bathroom if she had a tampon & realised to be an awesome part of the community of women she should carry tampons for other women – just like I – a menopausal woman – do.”

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The user’s point is that it can be useful for people who don’t have periods to carry period products. Menopausal women are one such demographic; cis men are, too.

GRV Media/The Focus has reached out to representatives for Dylan Mulvaney and Tampax, and to Jeffrey Marsh directly, regarding whether there is actually a sponsorship deal connecting them, and for comment on the whole situation.

Tampax wouldn’t be the first period product company to engage with trans voices

In March 2018, Self published an article in praise of UK-based tampon subscription box service, Pink Parcel. 

Miami, USA – November 24, 2013: Tampax 10 tampons with anti-slip grip cardboard applicator box. Tampax brand is owned by TAMBRANDS INC.

Pink Parcel was running an ad campaign at the time, the aim of which was to “normalize periods,” and help people to normalize them. 

Notably, it featured a trans man – someone who was, as he himself notes in the video ad, “genetically born female and then eventually realized that [he] wasn’t born in the right body.”

The Independent interviewed him at the time. His name is Kenny Jones. He was 23 when the “I’M ON” ad campaign came out.

Meanwhile, it’s not absolutely clear whether or not Dylan Mulvaney and Jeffrey Marsh are equivalent spokespersons or ambassadors for the Tampax brand, but people taking part in the post-tweet conversation have certainly begun to regard them as such.

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Bruno is a novelist, amateur screenwriter and journalist with interests in digital media, storytelling, film and politics. He’s lived in France, China, Sri Lanka and the Philippines, but returned to the UK for a degree (and because of the pandemic) in 2020. His articles have appeared in Groundviews, Forge Press and The Friday Poem, and most are readable on Medium or onurbicycle.com.