“I Heart boobies.”

How about wearing this statement as a wristband? This is what the Keep a Breast Foundation is trying to encourage woman (and men) to do. This message “I Heart boobies,” as well as other thought-provoking statements, is boldly emblazoned in highly colorful wristbands and breast cancer bracelets.

The Keep a Breast Foundation is an organization that aims to raise awareness and thus prevent breast cancer. The foundation works to expose young people to help them prevent or detect breast cancer early or to provide support to those who already have the dread disease. Armed with information, young people can be able to develop habits and make healthy choices so that they are healthy and breast-cancer free.

As part of their awareness campaign, the Keep a Breast Foundation is selling these silicone wristbands. They are highly popular with teenagers and pre-teens.

Wristbands and campaigns

The success of the Keep a Breast Foundation is just one of the examples of how useful awareness wristbands can be in promoting a belief or an opinion. Aside from the Keep a Breast Foundation Bands, other foundations have started using wristbands as a platform for them to promote their cause. It all started when the “live strong” bracelets was seen to be an effective platform to unite, inspire and empower others with a strong message. The wristbands are also fun and fashionable.

The Message

The popularity of wristbands may be attributed to the messages inscribed in them. For instance, the Keep a Breast wristbands are popular because of the controversial and playful word “boobies”.

Some young people like to wear these messages that may be racy just to push the limits – with the parents or the teachers, while others think that some of the messages are veering from the “playful” and irreverent to the highly inappropriate. For example, “boobies” may be considered sexual.

When asked, the Keep a Breast Foundation actually stated that the choice of the wording is deliberate. They are committed to connect with the youth and not just with adults, thus, a more youthful approach has been taken with the wristbands.

We can say that the foundation has been successful in connecting with the youth. For some, it’s not just a fashion accessory. It’s an actual statement. In fact, two middle school students from Pennsylvania were suspended for wearing the bracelets, or, more like, refusing to take them off. The school took offense at the message, believing that the silicone bracelets bear offensive language. Thus, it violated the school’s dress code. The students refused to take the bracelet off. Along with the suspension, the girls were also banned from attending school dances.

The event resulted in a court case, where the girls claimed that the school violated their rights, particularly their right to free speech (the First Amendment). The case has yet to be decided.

Getting the Message Across

The example just demonstrates the power of a strategic message, and the medium by which this message is taken across. Really, people can look up, get the message and listen. Customizable wristbands are fashion accessories with a purpose.