The concept of awareness bracelets gained importance and became popular for the first time, when the Lance Armstrong Foundation used the silicone livestrong wristband. These wristbands were used for spreading awareness for supporting research work in cancer. These were actually yellow silicone bands that were launched by Lance Armstrong who was a cancer survivor and also an extremely popular cyclist as well.
How Awareness Bracelets became Popular
Lance along with Nike designed the yellow awareness bracelets known as Livestrong wristbands and is intended for the “Wear Yellow Live Strong” educational program. The program was started in order to raise issues concerning cancer awareness and cancer research among people. The bands are priced just at $1 and are sold in packets of 10, 100 and 1200. They were part of the initiative to raise $25.1 million for the cause. The awareness bracelets were immensely popular and the aim was achieved within six months. Till date over 70 million of such awareness bracelets have been sold worldwide by Nike through the various outlets.
Yellow was chosen as it was the color of Lance Armstrong’s jersey as the leader of Tour De France that he won for 7 consecutive times. Many other charities have also been influenced from these awareness bracelets and have devised their own unique bracelets to raise awareness and monetary contributions for their causes.
After its launch, the awareness bracelets have gained immense popularity; especially through celebrity endorsements such as Oprah helped it. Many TV shows even parodied the awareness bracelets raising its profile immensely. The colors of the awareness bracelets are many depending on the cause and the charity. Some hospitals have discontinued the use of the yellow Livestrong wristbands as they are reminiscent of the yellow “Do not resuscitate” bands that are used by them.
Other charities and political causes have joined in
Since then, it has become quite a done thing for the charities to devise and sport special awareness bracelets. Some of these awareness bracelets are so popular, that they have actually inspired people to even make fake bracelets and make profits from them.
The awareness bracelets are now being used for political reasons as well as other causes also. In the United Kingdom, a bracelet is available that is for charity and bears the colors of the armed forces, namely Red, Navy Blue and Sky Blue to help the heroes.