At a menstrual cramp-inducing €11.96 for a pack of 48, the Pinky is a plastic glove that doubles as a disposal bag to provide a “discreet solution for pads and tampons”, according to the product website.
Andre Ritterswuerden and Eugen Raimkulow, who met in the army, presented their product on Monday on the German version of the Dragons’ Den TV show where inventors pitch to potential investors, drawing €30,000 from an entrepreneur.
But the two men quickly found themselves facing a slew of disparaging comments on social media, with the hashtag #PinkyGate trending on Twitter on Wednesday.
“We both really do understand women,” Raimkulow said on the TV show, basing their qualifications on both being married and having lived with women in flat shares.
Occasionally, he would “dare to look in the rubbish bin”, he said.
“After a while it just smells unpleasant. And you can see it, because it starts seeping through the paper.”
“Every day there is another useless product for the vagina,” tweeted Canadian-American gynaecologist Jennifer Gunter, author of The Vagina Bible. “I need to throw (the book) at these idiots,” she said.
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Even the conservative daily Die Welt waded in, pointing out that plastic gloves and disposal bags can already be bought for a fraction of the price — albeit in other colours.
“Is this a real invention? No,” it said. “It is no surprise that there are no women behind the Pinky but two men, who have no experience of using sanitary products.”
Ritterswuerden and Eugen Raimkulow published a video on Wednesday addressing the criticism.
“In no way did we mean to suggest that menstruation is something disgusting,” they said, adding: “We realise that we have not fully taken on board different views on the subject.”