The project Protective Underwear by Julia van Zanten aims to change the perception of incontinence undergarments by repositioning them in a normal daily context. Both for the user to wash and wear as a regular garment, and in retail where it shouldn’t be categorised as a medical aid.
Imagine losing control of your bladder while you’re out for dinner in a restaurant or sitting on the bus. For people who suffer incontinence, the fear of not being able to make it to the toilet in time and the consequent embarrassment often prevents them from leaving their home or engaging in social situations. Triggered by this condition that affected her grandfather, Julia van Zanten felt a responsibility to examine this issue and challenge the stigma of incontinence.
Her collection of washable textile underwear, accompanied by washing elements and an awareness campaign, aims to re-instil a sense of dignity and normality to women who suffer mild incontinence. The collection comprises two sets of high-absorbent underwear made of silk and wool (outer) paired with absorbent yarn and microfiber (inner).