All Articles Tagged "Teen Girls"

Growth Spurt: 4 Tips When Buying Her First Bra

September 14th, 2015 - By Kweli Wright
Share to Twitter Email This



A girl’s first bra is a rite of passage for both her and her parents – and one that’s occurring at younger and younger ages. For some girls, it’s a turning point fraught with anxiety; for others, it’s a celebration. Either way, parents have a hard time ensuring their daughters to have good memories of shopping for and wearing their first bra.

“Trying on your first bra in a big discount retail store can be unnerving for an eight or nine-year-old who may already feel shy about the experience,” says Kelly O’Brien, a lingerie specialist whose experience with young customers led her to launch LingerTween, the first ecommerce site dedicated to undergarments for tweens. “And those stores have limited selections, both in sizes and styles.”

The average Caucasian girl now enters puberty, which is marked by breast development, at 9.7 years old – about 4 months younger than just 17 years ago, according to an ongoing study as part of the Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program. For black girls, the age is 8.8 years and the number of girls developing breasts in first grade has tripled since 1997.
“Another choice is shops like Victoria’s Secret, a place most parents don’t feel comfortable taking their young daughters to shop,” O’Brien notes.
But there are options. Once you’ve found a comfortable place to shop with a good selection of choices, O’Brien offers these tips for ensuring your daughter is comfortable and happy in her first bra.

One size does not fit all. If your tween is average sized, bras labeled “one size fits all” may work. If you’re looking at bras with cup and band sizes, you’ll need to measure. For the band size, wrap the measuring tape around your daughter just under the breasts, where the band sits. Add 5 to that number, and that’s the size. (Tape says 23 inches, band will be 28 inches.) For cup size, measure around the fullest part of the chest and subtract that number from the band size. The difference is the cup size – 0 to 1 inch is an A; 2 inches is a B.

Check the strap length. Straps are very important to consider for fit — especially if your tween is petite. If the strap is a traditional adjustable strap, such as those on most women’s bras, be sure it can be shortened sufficiently. Elastic or stretchy straps are usually a safe bet.

Consider a lined bra – it’s not about making her look more developed than she is! Generally speaking, tween padding is not meant to increase cup size. If a tween bra appears to have some padding, it’s typically a thin layer of foam used to smooth over the nipple area so nothing is visible under the shirt. It’s a modesty measure that also helps some girls feel less self-conscious.

Camisoles and sports bras are popular options for shy girls who worry a bra will call attention to them. A short or full-length camisole provides a bit of coverage and isn’t as noticeable under a blouse. For the same reason, some girls like to start with bras cut in a sporty style that don’t feel like a traditional bra.
“In my shop, girls will come in with their mother and often their grandmother – buying that first bra is a big deal!” O’Brien says. “This is a rite of passage for everyone involved, and we can make it an experience that’s fondly remembered decades later.”

Kelly O’Brien is the owner of Linger, an upscale lingerie shop, and blogs about lingerie at A former teacher, digital marketing executive, adjunct college professor, O’Brien founded LingerTween, to address a glaring marketplace absence.

The Queen Latifah Show: 3 Brave Girls Shock the Nation

February 8th, 2015 - By Rich
Share to Twitter Email This

While most kids are back in school after holiday break, noses in books and face front to teachers, three amazing young women remind America of the lessons they learn in school that are never actually taught.

From racism to silence, you’ll want to see how Belissa Escobedo, Rhiannon McGavin, and Zariya Allen tackle these problems with heart, grace and poise but still always real in their presentation of “Somewhere In America.” The three students appeared on The Queen Latifah Show in Los Angeles after having opened for soul-singer John Legend at his Hollywood Bowl concert.

Belissa, Rhiannon and Zariya are a part of Get Lit, a non-profit in LA. The organization focuses on getting youth to be more literate through poetry, performance, education, and other teen poetry programs throughout Southern California.

Their names and message are spreading and rightfully so. Watch as the Queen gives the girls a standing ovation and see why you’ll want to share this with both your teens and friends alike.

Shopping for a Teenage Girl?: 15 Birthday Gift Ideas

January 16th, 2015 - By Rich
Share to Twitter Email This

If you’re shopping for a teenage girl, whether for your daughter or niece and you are not so sure where to start, this list has got you covered! Sometimes shopping for others can be tough but things can get really tricky when shopping for teens–especially if they haven’t given you any clues on what they may want. Don’t panic, just get creative, here are 15 birthday gift recommendations to consider!

Shopping for a Teenage Girl? 15 Birthday Gift Ideas

New Report: Black Girls Unfairly Disciplined and Sexually Harassed in School

September 29th, 2014 - By Rich
Share to Twitter Email This

A report from the National Women’s Law Center and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund released last week revealed that Black girls are often given harsher punishments than white students and also more likely yo be a victim of sexual harassment.

Why is this? It has to do with racial and gender stereotypes that have been engrained in our society for centuries.  The report said that discipline disparities most likely occur because African American females are seen as ” loud, confrontational, assertive, and provocative.”

The graph below shows just how often Black girls are disciplined.



Not all states track school discipline data based on race and gender, but Ohio is one that does and their findings are saddening.  Between 2012 to 2013 African American girls were disciplined often more than 10 times the amount of White females and for unsubstantiated reasons such as “disobedience/disruptive behavior.”

“The have different rules for us (African American girls) than they do for White and Asian girls. White girls and Asian girls can wear anything and get away with it, but they will send us to the dean for wearing the same thing,” noted one research participant. But it does not stop with dress, African American girls have also been disciplined due to their style of hair. You may remember the case when two African American girls were told their hair (afro puffs and dreadlocks) were not a part of the dress code.




Another sad reality is that African American girls are victims of sexual assault at a higher rate than their peers. Black females have been more likely to be held back and score lower on standardized tests, however the report mentions that often times this is due to the lack of experienced instructors and resources that typically plague schools with a high African American population.

In a statement released, Sherrilyn A. Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund stated: “Our educational policies and practices must open the doors of opportunity for all -– regardless of race or gender. Only then will we fulfill the promise of Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark ruling that invalidated legal segregation in America 60 years ago,” Ifill said.

Fatima Goss Graves, vice president for education and employment at the National Women’s Law Center told the Huffington Post that there was one bright spot the report showed and it had to do with Black girls taking on leadership roles.

“In fact, 53 percent of African American girls surveyed expressed a desire to be leaders as compared to 50 percent of Hispanic girls and 34 percent of Caucasian
girls .42 African American girls were also the most likely group of girls to consider themselves to be leaders (75 percent), and the most likely to have leadership experience (78 percent) .43 African American and Latina girls rated themselves more highly on “leadership skills” than white girls did .44 Yet opportunities for leadership are scarce for girls, even today.”

While the report shines light on major issues within the school system it also shows us just how strong African American girls are in the face of all they have to endure. What this does too is shows us, as parents, what areas we should be focusing on and reporting negligence that occurs within the schools we send out children to each and every day.






Inappropriate Alert? Lingerie Retailers Want to Sell Their Wares to Tweens

March 6th, 2013 - By CAP
Share to Twitter Email This

via Facebook

via Victoria’s Secret PINK Facebook page

The Limited Brands’ Victoria’s Secret and other major chains are capitalizing on the opportunity to sell intimate apparel to prepubescent girls. Yes, even younger girls need underwear. But perhaps there’s something a little too “intimate” happening here?

Victoria’s Secrets’ PINK college collection has been popular with older teens. However, by using acts like Justin Bieber to perform during their nationally televised fashion show, the company’s target customer seems to be getting even younger. The justification that came from Limited’s CFO is that tweens “want to be older…they want to be cool like the girl in college.” The question is whether that’s justification for targeting them.

Justice, a retail store targeted at girls ages seven to 12, sells a collection of bras and panties specially for their clientele. Other stores that reach this tween audience like Hot Topic and Urban Outfitters are following suit.

In the 90s kids wanted to smoke cigarettes to be cool, which the nation agreed was harmful. Ultimately, it led to the death of candy cigarettes. I’m in no way saying girls wearing lingerie is like children smoking, but shouldn’t there be a line drawn on clothing that pushes the envelope as well?

Taking a quick look at the Victoria Secret website you can easily notice that the PINK line is not all about track suits and bright colors. There are several options for lacy panties and thongs.

In my opinion, these undergarments promote the loss of innocence for our girls. If no one’s looking, why does a kid need such fancy panties? Am I overreacting on this issue? Let me know your thoughts.

Follow CAP on Twitter: @in_allcaps

Teen Sex Offenders: Does the Time Fit the Crime?

January 25th, 2012 - By Brande Victorian
Share to Twitter Email This

A freshman girl dating a senior guy is a common scenario in high school. For some, the story ends with popularity, a high school sweetheart, maybe even heartbreak, but for others there is shame, stigma, and maybe even a charge of statutory rape.

The Daily Beast reports that there are a growing number of parents across all 50 states who are fighting to protect their children from the sex-offender laws that were meant to do just that. From their view, the punishments inflicted on high-school boys are far too harsh and they want the laws to change.

One mother, Francie Baldino, says her son Ken’s prison term was unthinkable. In 2004, the 18-year-old high school senior was arrested for having sex with his girlfriend who was a 14-year-old freshman. Because the age of consent in Michigan is 16, he was sentenced to a year in jail and three years’ probation. When Ken was released from jail he violated probation by resuming his relationship with the girl and then was given a sentence of five to fifteen years. After serving six years behind bars, he’s now forced to wear a GPS device and was told his home address and personal information would be listed in the sex-offender registry for 25 years.

When a guy is in his 20s and a girl is 14, the issue of sex with a minor is a no-brainer, but when we’re talking two high-school students, one of whom may have just become a legal adult, the issue is much more gray. Even Fred Mester, the judge in Ken’s case openly acknowledged the complexities of statutory rape laws when he sentenced him in 2005, saying, “Half my senior class … were dating freshman girls, and I suspect half of them would be in here today.”

While the prevalence of the act doesn’t mean it should be excused, it does call into question whether the law should recognize the difference between teen sex and teen rape. As Ken’s attorney, Cheryl Carpenter says, “The laws often don’t differentiate between a 50-year-old man molesting a 14-year-old girl, and two teenagers having sex.”

But how could that be done? Often times girls who sleep with older boys say the sex was consensual, but in an age where so many teen girls are admitting to being coerced into having sex or performing certain sexual acts, it’s hard to know whether they are telling the truth or protecting boys they are scared of. And as prosecutors argue, the law is there so there’s no need to delve into this issue of distinction at all. They say the law is the law and kids need to follow it regardless of whatever urges or relationships they have.

“The court isn’t imposing restrictions because it’s fun—it’s the law,” Paul Walton, a chief assistant prosecutor in Michigan, says. “You can disagree on the age of consent, but the law says that prior to that age, a person doesn’t have the ability to consent.”

Although following the law truly is the bottom line in these cases and the aim isn’t to encourage teen sex—although that behavior isn’t going anywhere—unfair laws are protested all the time.  With boys like Ken, who has now been taken off the sex-offender registry but remains a convicted felon for life, you have to wonder if their futures are being thrown away before they even get started with these harsh penalties.

Do you think sex-offender laws are too harsh when it comes to teens? Should legislators work to modify the laws or should they stand as they are to protect young girls?

Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.

More on Madame Noire!