>The very first time I saw an ad for , I hated it immediately. There is nothing that makes my blood boil more than companies who take a basic product - in this case a condom – and then package it and market it differently to men and women. Guess what? No matter who buys it – woman or man – it will be used the same way (including the possibility of water balloons or just plain balloons with spermicide – balloons hate sperm!). The hideous corporate need to squeeze every last fucking penny out of something by creating and then exploiting social differences between men and women drives me up the wall.

Here is their obnoxious blurb:

ELEXA™
A Women's Perspective by Trojan®
Enjoy the freedom to focus more completely on the pleasure of intimacy. ELEXA™ is a premium line of sexual well-being products created from a woman's perspective and designed to help you realize a more fulfilling sex life.

(For the record, I copied this blurb exactly – it said “A Women’s Perspective,” not the grammatically correct “A Woman’s Perspective,” but perhaps drugstore.com was at fault, not Elexa.) As far as I can tell, it is just a fucking . What is the difference between Elexa and any other Trojan condom? What exact “woman’s perspective” are these advertising nutjobs talking about? Oh, wait. I see. It is a pretty box... Women, if you are too fucking self-conscious to buy a regular box of condoms, I suggest that you are probably not mature enough to be having sex in the first place. Grow the fuck up! Just because it is in a “pretty” or “sexy” box does not mean that you are getting a better product.

Even more annoying is that when I looked up “Trojan” at Drugstore.com, it only lists regular Trojans, although Elexa is made by Trojan. To find Elexa by Trojan, you must specifically type in Elexa. (I guess they didn’t want to scare the manly men away from their condoms, lest they see the special boxes and get worried that they are buying something from a "woman's perspective.") I looked it up so that I could compare prices, as I was certain that Elexa condoms would cost more than the same condoms in non-pretty boxes. I was wrong, but only because drugstore.com discounts Elexa at a higher rate (19%) than Trojans (13%-17%). Actually, the prices are very close, and sometimes Elexa costs more without the discount, and sometimes Trojans do. Very interesting. For example, Drugstore.com sells both Elexa and regular Trojan packages with a vibrating ring and condom for $9.99. Elexa Stimulating Lubricant are $9.99 and Trojan with “Warm Sensations Lubricant,” which I assume is the same thing or similar enough – I mean, how many random sensation lubricants can they have? – are $10.49. Both types come (or at least that is the plan, wink wink) with 12 condoms. Trojans, however, are available in a economy pack of 36 for a mere $17-$19, while Elexa max out at 12. I guess women are just getting it less often. (If you need more than 12 at a time, you must be a total slut!) Whatever.

However, I tried very hard to like Elexa. Sure, it also annoyed me that the mere creation of condoms from “a woman’s perspective” seemed to once again put the onus for protection on women, as usual. (And, yes, it is smart to be prepared, but don’t fuck a dude who can’t even be bothered to pick up some dick socks, no matter how damn hot he is. Is that not the ultimate sign of laziness?) They are not charging women more to buy condoms than men, as so many products get away with. Most important, Elexa is a sponsor of BlogHer. I love ! They have many talented women writing on their site and even let little old me write things for them. Elexa also has its own blog, in which they hired some really great women to write for, even if it has the most gag-inducing title in the world, Sexy Smart. The women who write for it are honest and funny and full of great information. Just because it is corporate-sponsored, should I dis it? Also because its logo is an anorexic white chick in a dress with the front slit down to what would be her belly button except that she has the longest torso ever and a skirt that would be cootie-exposing on any real woman? No! I tried to keep an open mind. It is good, I told myself over and over.

What threw me over the edge into hating Elexa forever was their attempt at BlogHer swag. All of the attendees received a free t-shirt. This would be cool except that usually, when companies give out free t-shirts, they give out ones that are size large so that a wide range of people can wear their ads proudly. Short people like me can just cut the bottom of the shirt off or opt to wear it as a dress. Tall people can wear them without exposing their midriffs. Thin, overweight, and in-between people can all partake in the group t-shirt experience. It is good.

Elexa, however, only distributed very fitted tees in a size small. I heard many, many women complain that this shirt did not fit them, and was something they could ever wear out in public, if at all, because it was so ridiculously small. Thus this strategy indicates to me is that Elexa only wants a particular type of women to be seen in public advertising their product. That type of woman should resemble as much as possible the stick figure that is their logo. Everyone knows that fat women cannot possibly be sexy, right?

Fuck you Elexa. You are neither Sexy or Smart, which is a major bummer because the blog, once you get past all the pink and purple (a color scheme obviously chosen for its femininity), is pretty damn good. You almost had me in your evil corporate-profit-increasing clutches!

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