Trump-inspired Thinx 'pussy' ad banned in SF subway

Why no one will put this founder on camera
Why no one will put this founder on camera

Warning: This story contains graphic language.

Donald Trump's words aren't even suitable for the subway.

Thinx, a period underwear brand, recently had one of its ads banned by San Francisco's BART metro system. The ad read "Pussy-grabbing-proof underwear," a nod to Trump's now infamous "Grab them by the pussy" statement from a recently surfaced 2005 videotape.

Some women, including Thinx founder Miki Agrawal, are trying to reclaim that word, which Trump and others have used to objectify women and promote sexual violence against them.

"We figured since the Republication national candidate said it, we could say it too," MIki Agrawal told CNNMoney. "Periods are political. Sexual assault is political. We want to showcase that in our ads."

thinx ad
Thinx's ad mentioning the word "pussy" was banned in SF. Instead, it is running the ad featured on top.

Agrawal points out that, because of Trump, the word has become a "colloquialism for sexual assault."

Related: The Pussy Project: Women around the country speak out against Trump

BART objected to the word, though. "Crude descriptions of sexual anatomy, regardless of sex, are vulgar. This is not the kind of atmosphere appropriate to generate inside BART stations," Alicia Trost, communications department manager at BART, said in a statement sent to CNNMoney.

Trost added that while they understand the spirit behind "reclaiming" the word, "our advertising standards make it clear that BART is not the suitable setting to begin such a campaign."

Related: This founder makes people uncomfortable -- and that's a problem

Agrawal said that while the BART doesn't want to "ruffle any feathers" by allowing them to run the ad, "it speaks volumes to the patriarchal double standard. [Trump] can say it, and it's locker room talk."

Thinx presented multiple ads to BART for this particular campaign. The "pussy" one was the only one rejected; the others are running in BART stations.

When Agrawal believes in something, she doesn't mind ruffling feathers.

One year ago, Thinx fought a battle with the MTA over ads it wanted to run in the New York subway system. Outfront Media, the company that approves MTA ads, said parts of the ads were inappropriate. The ads featured women in underwear, a half grapefruit (vaguely resembling a vagina), and dripping egg yolks. Agrawal used outrage in the press to protest the decision and ultimately got the ads approved.

Agrawal runs two other startups in the hygiene space. Her modern bidet startup Tushy is behind a website called

The site surfaces things that Trump has said, like "Number one, I have great respect for women. I was the one that really broke the glass ceiling on behalf of women."

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Tushy says it is both making a political statement ("Share this page with Trump supporters and sympathizers of humanity alike to flush his politifecal matter for good") and promoting its product.

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