"Sex bracelets" are the latest craze amongst Brazilian teenagers. A successor to friendship bracelets, each of these cheap coloured wristbands relates to a type of sexual activity. While it was initially supposed to be a bit of fun, for one teenage girl, the game turned into a nightmare.

The plastic accessories first became popular in the UK in the 1990s, where they were known as "shag bands". The rule of the game is that depending on the colour, when broken, the wearer is obliged to commit a certain sexual act - from a simple hug to actual intercourse. The supposed aim of the game: to break bracelets in order to get yourself sexual favours.

The sex bracelet colour code:

Yellow: a kiss

Pink: the girl must flash her breasts

Purple: French kiss

Red: lap dance

White: whatever the girl wants

Blue: fellatio

Light pink: cunnilingus

Black: intercourse

Gold: all of the above

The sex bracelet game came to public attention in Brazil in April when a 13-year-old girl reported to the police that three boys had raped her because she was wearing a black bracelet (which means full sex). The ensuing public outcry resulted in the banning of sex bracelets in schools in several cities across Brazil, including Rio de Janeiro. Other municipalities decided to restrict the sale of sex bracelets to people over 18 only.

Posted by Joao Carlos on his blog.

"The sex bracelet craze reveals the shortcomings of sex education in Brazilian schools"

João Carlos Cunha Moura is a legal assistant in the state of Maranhão, Brazil. His blog: Viagem aleatoria.

This game is popular with teens aged between 15 and 18; my brothers and sisters wear them. The bands are really cheap, they only cost one real (50 euro cents) for a pack of 10, and you can find them absolutely everywhere.

However, the wearer isn't really forced into partaking in any sexual act. I've never heard of a girl who actually had sex because someone snapped one of her bands. It’s more like the kind of games we used to play when we were young, like "truth or dare". While they probably know the supposed meaning of these coloured bands, many Brazilian girls wear them just because they like the look of them.

But the sex bracelet craze also reveals the shortcomings of sex education in Brazilian schools. Old Catholic taboos pervade our culture and most teenagers never talk about sex with adults. TV shows and movies are their only source of information about sex.

Banning sex bracelets in schools doesn’t really make sense. It’s just a way of reassuring people after the rape of the girl in Londrina. The rapists claimed they had sex with her after snapping her black bracelet, but it’s just an excuse. The ban is just another way to avoid talking seriously with teenagers regarding sexual issues..."

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Posted by Brendinha Silva Brito on her blog.