The piece I wrote on why women shouldn’t put jade eggs in their vaginas, never mind wear them for extended periods of time, has caused quite a stir. There are major issues with the post on GOOP, which is not surprising as they did not interview a gynecologist or a pelvic floor physical therapist. My response has been viewed almost 600,000 times and been covered on many sites ranging from Gizmodo, Raw Story, Cosmopolitan in Australia, The Daily Mail, and the New York Times blog Women In the World.
One journalist who covered for ATTN reached out to GOOP for a response and she was directed to this statement:
If the views of the author don’t represent the views of GOOP then I would suggest GOOP move away from the annoying third person. The royal “we” may be one way that GOOP likes to distinguish itself from the AP Stylebook, but it does lend the reader to think it’s a bit of an endorsement. That couldn’t be the point, could it?
This post on jade eggs can’t possibly “highlight alternative studies” as no studies were provided. I have read many so-called health practices on GOOP and rarely, if ever, found even a quasi-scientific study in a predatory journal to back them up. It may shock you, Dear Reader, but there are no studies on jade egg wearing. To hide behind the word “studies” is nothing more than chicanery. How many people will check? A more correct, but perhaps less lucrative, term would be “alternative therapies.”
A jade eggthusiast is a “medical practitioner” in the way a magician is a “medical practitioner.” Interviewing an eggthusiast about the pelvic floor is no different from putting up Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education. There are actual experts in things, you know? But then again at GOOP it’s all about Brand.
What bothers me most about the disclaimer is that GOOP is actually claiming they are just proving information and aren’t really promoting the therapy.
IF YOU ARE SELLING THE PRODUCT YOU HAVE GONE BEYOND INFORMATIONAL TO PROMOTIONAL!
(Yes, I am shouting).
It’s a bit of a sleight of hand to say, “We, meaning some people just not us, say you can try this thing and it works great for them. We, meaning some people just not us and certainly not Gwyneth Paltrow, are certainly stoked by it but don’t take our word on it. And hey, before you leave our site and ask a doctor or physical therapist why don’t you buy them from us? They are so pretty!”
I see women harmed by this kinds of snake oil passed off as legitimate therapy every single day, whether they have caused physical pain (which wearing jade eggs for extended periods of time most certainly could), medical consequences from delaying real therapy that could actually help, emotional pain from being duped, months of deprivation from a useless diet, or financial pain from wasting $66 on a product that could never hope to help it’s all bad. Some women try these non-therapies and when they don’t work they actually give up on further care because they think they tried something worthwhile and as it didn’t work they must be broken and destined to live with their health condition. The people at GOOP might not have a problem with that kind of heartbreak, but I sure do.
When the people at GOOP say their site is curated by Gwyneth Paltrow they are cashing in on her privilege with women (because many people look up to and trust celebrities, and if you don’t believe me tell me who is now in the Oval Office) to pass off magic as a good and worthy health practice for profit. You don’t get to say “my bad” when someone like me who actually knows about these things and sees the consequences calls you out on your shell game.
GOOP, I am having none of your post factual nonsense and gaslighting.