Home > Website archive > News and media > News archives > 2016 > 02 > Launch of pop-up shop to stimulate public debate on egg freezing as survey reveals shift in attitudes

Launch of pop-up shop to stimulate public debate on egg freezing as survey reveals shift in attitudes

egg_freezing

In response to growing public interest in egg freezing, a fictional beauty brand called Timeless will ‘pop-up’ in London’s Old Street later this month following expert advice and research from LSE. The store will engage women with the issue of fertility and explore how social egg freezing may impact the world of work, relationships and wider society in the future.

Social egg freezing is the freezing of women’s eggs for lifestyle as opposed to medical reasons. The unique pop-up brings the medical and social issues around this sensitive subject to life through the products of a woman's beauty store, creating an imaginative and informative intervention into people’s daily lives.

The shop will feature a range of provocative beauty products including a '3-Step Solution for egg freezing', a bespoke perfume line called ‘Eau so Pressured’, and a range of age defying serums that inform about fertility decline. It will also feature a short film and a programme of live talks by leading experts in reproductive medicine and gender politics, and women with first hand experience of egg freezing.

The project has been designed and led by UK-based creative consultancy The Liminal Space with support from the Wellcome Trust and the Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF), as well as expert advice and research from LSE. The Liminal Space recognised a significant lack of information and debate about egg freezing in the public domain despite its rapidly growing popularity, and created Timeless to address this information gap. The shop uses creative methods to make a relevant and challenging topic accessible, removing the taboo that often surrounds reproductive issues, and encouraging people to have informed conversations about an area of life that affects us all. 

Timeless 3 Simple Steps

Sarah Douglas and Amanda Gore, Directors at The Liminal Space, explain the importance of addressing this issue now: “Social egg freezing is a relatively new offer but one that could soon become as revolutionary to women’s life choices as the Pill. With companies such as Apple and Facebook including it as part of benefits packages, and some clinics promising egg freezing as an ‘insurance policy’, there is increasing pressure on women to consider freezing their eggs without fully considering the potential impact on the workplace, their relationships and wider society. With Timeless we are bringing this debate to people in a creative and engaging way.”

As part of the project The Liminal Space worked with ICM to poll more than 1,000 women from across England, Scotland and Wales. The poll revealed that women aged 18-24 are far more comfortable considering egg freezing as a way to improve career progression and control their lives than women of older ages. (84% of women aged 18-24 agreed that improving career options was a good reason for women to freeze their eggs, with 59% believing women should be encouraged to use egg freezing as a way to give them more reproductive autonomy).

The poll also showed that this younger generation of women are less concerned by the £10k price tag it can carry, and more open to the procedure being offered as part of a corporate benefits package - showing radically changing perceptions to egg freezing among young women. (20% of 18-24 female cohort would consider egg freezing at a cost of £10K).

Emily Jackson, Professor of Law at LSE,added: “Does egg freezing represent an insurance policy against women’s biological clock, or is it more like buying an expensive lottery ticket? Women (and men) need clear and accessible information not only about egg freezing itself, but also about age-related fertility loss. Effective communication about medical risk is difficult, and the importance of the Timeless project is its use of innovative ways to provide user-friendly information about the risks, benefits and wider implications of egg freezing.”

Dr.Tim Child, Medical Director, Oxford Fertility Unit,commented: “Women often come to the clinic too late for fertility treatment to work for them. We support the Timeless project because it brings the topic of fertility directly to young women, and provides a unique way to engage them in thinking about their fertility and the options available to them.”

Timeless is supported by an advisory group that includes leading experts in reproductive technology and social science from renowned organisations including Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospital Assisted Conception Unit, The Oxford Fertility Unit, The London School of Economics and Political Science Law, Progress Educational Trust and Future Foundation. The project was shaped alongside a number of professional women in their 30s with first-hand experience of social egg freezing, and the active participation of students from the LSE.

Notes 

The Timeless pop-up shop will be open at Old Street Station for one week only, from 29 February – 5 March 2016, 8am – 8pm.

Film: https://vimeo.com/154295958

For more information about talks and events at the pop-up: www.time-less.org 

Twitter: @_time_less 

Press images available to download at:

 

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/kdosfo78f6v8cns/AAA0AXQ8OjUOHJ1Ok3RzSGIka?dl=0

 

For further information, images, comment or interviews contact:

LSE

Jo Bale: 07831 609679 / j.m.bale@lse.ac.uk

TDC PR

Alex Mills: 07723 024579 / alex@tdcpr.com

Tim Duncan: 07729 479166 / tim@tdcpr.com

The Liminal Space

Sarah Douglas:  sarah@the-liminal-space.com

Amanda Gore:  amanda@the-liminal-space.com

About The Liminal Space

The Liminal Space is a creative consultancy that specialises in designing learning and engagement experiences for organisations looking for a creative edge and a fresh perspective. Rooted in the worlds of art, design and academia, they use creativity and first-hand learning to bring complex concepts to life for a range of audiences and clients – from public and cultural sector organisations to major brands. www.the-liminal-space.com

About the Timeless ICM poll

ICM conducted a poll on behalf of The Liminal Space in November 2015. There were 2013 respondents, (903 men / 1110 women), across England, Scotland and Wales.

Key statistics from the poll:

The poll revealed significantly changing attitudes and an increased openness to egg freezing among young women in the UK.

Despite some social shifts, it is still very difficult for women to balance careers and motherhood:

-       84% of young women (18 – 24 yrs) agreed that egg freezing is justifiable to improve opportunities for career progression

-       71% of all women under 40 polled agreed that egg freezing would be justifiable to improve opportunities for career progression before they have children

-       16% of people polled agree that it should be a corporate benefit. This rose to 37% among the youngest cohort of women (18-24yrs).

Modern science provides us with increasing control over our bodies:

-       Even at a cost of upwards of £10,000, 11% of women of all ages – and 20% of women aged 18-24 - would currently consider, or would have considered, paying to have their eggs frozen.

-       59% of women aged 18-24 versus 22% aged 55-64 agreed: ‘It is right to encourage women to freeze their eggs as it gives them more control over their lives’

Broad support from men and women for egg freezing as a means to give women more time to find a partner:

-       82% of women under 40 agreed that it was justifiable for women to freeze their eggs in order to give them more time to find the right relationship in which to pursue parenthood.

-       45% of men under 40 would support a decision for a women they were in a relationship with to freeze her eggs – relieving the time pressure on both sexes

To request more information, please contact TDC PR

8 February 2016

Share:Facebook|Twitter|LinkedIn|