The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!

Special Project

Special Project
From the 15th Annual Shorty Awards

The Truth, Undressed

Finalist in Social Good Campaign


Canesten is on a mission to help young people with a vagina understand their body and have confidence to look after their intimate health. Canesten is committed to empowering society with greater knowledge on intimate health because education and awareness surrounding intimate health is low. Only 6% of UK women (aged 16-25) find out about intimate health conditions through education and 60% only find out about vaginal infections when they first experience them. 

The UK is seen as a progressive nation for sexual health education, but research suggests vaginal health education is inadequate, which leads to feelings of shame and distress. Almost half of UK women (aged 18-24) feel worried about their vulva’s appearance and two in three UK women would change something about their vulva. 55% of UK women avoid seeking medical help because they feel embarrassed to show a healthcare specialist their vulva. Furthermore, images of vulvas are either over-sexualised via media and popular culture, including pornography, or they’re inaccurate metaphors and illustrations. These images don’t represent reality and cannot tackle the shame young people feel about their bodies. 

To reduce embarrassment and stigma, we developed a revolutionary global education platform; The Truth, Undressed. The unique programme targets people with a vagina, aged 11-24. It’s designed to break down misconceptions and taboos surrounding vulval anatomy and vaginal health.

Strategy and Execution

The Truth, Undressed is a ground-breaking initiative that provides the bare-naked facts about vulvas. The programme targets young people, teachers and parents. By fearlessly confronting the topic, we can teach the reality of how our bodies look and behave by providing access to uncensored, unsexualised and accurate information.  Leading the core concept, strategy, and execution, AnalogFolk launched the platform with a website, social video ads and partnered with educational body PHSE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic) Education to create a set of lesson plans for use in schools.

The microsite

The microsite includes content covering cultural pressures, labiaplasty, health conditions, pubic hair and what a vagina should smell and taste like. They’re truths that get taught inadequately by schools, either because it isn’t directly related to reproduction or is deemed inappropriate for minors. When developing the content, we utilised Canesten's 40+ years of intimate health knowledge and collaborated with Dr Anne Henderson, Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, who reviewed the depictions of vaginal discharge to confirm their medical accuracy.

For the first time in education, we showed real photographs of vulvas and discharge. Our intention was to move imagery away from sexualised depictions into an informative, educational space to equip young people with essential information. Sophie Mayanne, an award-winning photographer shot unedited, real-life photographs of vulvas of all shapes, sizes, skin tones and types of pubic hair. Great attention was given to ensure the images show vulvas in a desexualised, educational context. For example, depicting daily nude situations outside of sexual scenarios, such as dressing or showering using daytime lighting which shows the anatomy and avoids night time connotations. 

Untold Fable produced the stills and portraits accompanying the campaign to include diverse and inclusive casting, photographers and intimacy coordination.

Social Films

To enable this campaign to exist in the public realm, we created video ads for TikTok and Instagram to drive traffic to the microsite. Our films encourage people to not settle for metaphoric or euphemistic images to learn about their bodies. 

It was critical that safeguarding measures were in place ahead of the materials launching. We applied regulatory rigour too – all films were approved by the social media platforms with exemptions made by TikTok in support of the educational nature of this content.

Digital lessons

To achieve long-term societal impact, we ensured young people receive this education as part of the national school syllabus. Four lesson plans were developed in partnership with the PSHE Association, for Key Stages 3-5 (ages 11-18). A supporting guidance document was created to provide teachers with support, covering safeguarding, inclusivity and parental consent.

Dr Ester McGeeney and Dr Elly Hanson, specialists in youth centred research on relationships and sexualities, supported the development of the educational programme. A teaching pilot was carried out with 100% of respondents finding the resources engaging, relevant and helpful.  

Teachers can choose lesson plans with photographs, realistic illustrations, or without imagery. This enabled schools to ensure the learning is approached in an inclusive, age-appropriate way.


The Truth, Undressed is recording an impressive impact. In its first month, more than 42,000 people visited the website and stayed on average for more than two-and-a-half minutes, 40% more dwell time than on Canesten’s branded website, showing that we’re offering relevant and engaging content. To-date the teaching materials have been downloaded 1,500 times, demonstrating high engagement already. 

Since launch to date, across social we have reached 3.4M people. And we’ve received positive comments highlighting the impact of this initiative. One user commented: “Thank you for the fact that this even exists. It gives the opportunity for people to actually get educated on these kinds of things and normalises vulval and vaginal health.” – Lucy, 23

The work has secured coverage across national, consumer and marketing trade titles across the UK (including The Times, The Sun, The Express, Cosmopolitan and Women’s Health) Europe, US, Asia and Australia. The work has reached a media coverage audience of 163 million. 

Daria Costantini, Brand Lead for Canesten, Bayer Consumer Health UK says: “I’m excited to see how young people and schools will use this unique resource as it continues to run into 2023. It’s truly a first-of-its-kind. By empowering young people with a vagina to look after their health we’re paving the way for better vulval and vaginal health across the nation now and for the future.”


Video for The Truth, Undressed

Entrant Company / Organization Name

AnalogFolk Group, Canesten, Bayer Consumer Health


Entry Credits