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Brazilians Wax Philosophically About Underwear Messages

What's the best way to educate people about the need for cancer screenings? Maybe make some ads, put up billboards, hold a 5k run?

In Brazil, they prefer putting information where the rubber meets the road, so to speak.

In underwear.

Blame it on Rio.

Gisele Bundchen
WireImage | Getty Images
Gisele Bundchen

Brazilians pride themselves on their sex appeal, and underwear is big business.

AdAge reportsthere were 2.8 billion pieces of lingerie made in Brazil last year, bringing in $3.36 billion in revenues. For years, Brazilians waxed philosophical about the best way to reach out about cancer screenings, and they decided that underwear might be the perfect medium.

Or large. Heh heh.

At first, members of the Brazilian Congress tried to pass a law that would force manufacturers to put teeny weeny warnings in teeny weeny thong bikini underwear — specifically, labels in bras highlighting breast cancer screenings, labels in panties promoting cervical cancer screenings, and labels in boxers or briefs supporting prostate cancer screenings (ok, probably just briefs — do they wear boxers in Brazil?).

The bill failed to pass, as manufacturers rebelled against the cost and difficulty. Plus, you wouldn't be able to read anything that small. So a new version of the law — which just passed — requires the cancer screening information to be placed on underwear packaging.

Effective?

When's the last time you read underwear packaging? A better suggestion might have been to hire Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen to do public service announcements. All she'd have to say is, "Turn left and cough," and Brazil would soon be cancer free.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff must sign the law before it can take affect. Proponents hope one last amendment will tip support in their favor. AdAge reports they threw in a requirement "that underwear for adult women should also suggest use of condoms."

Wait.

The suggestion to use condoms will come in underwear for women, but not men? That's truly outrageous.

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