From Thongs to Crotchless Panties: When Will We Let Our Girls Be Girls?

November 15, 2011  |  

I’m starting to think that hot underwear for teens and tweens is a sad marketing tactic that misinformed companies have decided to pursue  for the sake of attention. I remember when Abercrombie and Fitch came out with thongs for kids in 2002 and now we’re looking at crotchless panties for young girls.

A  new store called Kids N Teen inside the Greeley Mall in Greeley, CO, stopped selling racy underwear with splits down the crotch only after parents pushed back against the inappropriate undergarments. The owner defended herself by saying only 25% of her merchandise is for teens. So as long as the girl is 13, it’s OK?

It’s insane to think that nowhere along the manufacturing process did anyone stop to say, um what is this? Or that a woman would even conceive of excusing these panties as OK because they’re for teens. Can we be surprised at the rates of pregnancy, STDs, abortions, and sexual activity among teens when we practically psyche them up to it?

Crotchless panties are just one piece of a huge hypersexualized pie we are throwing right in front of our young girl’s faces on a continuous basis. Gone are the frilly dresses we used to put little girls in, unless of course we’re dressing them up for a beauty pageant. Clothes for tots and tweens are now made to mostly mimic adult clothing in a mini size. Every time I turn on Lifetime there is a movie with some teenagers getting it in, and not always with any type of warning of the dangers of engaging in sexual activity too young; MTV’s “Skins” show has been likened to Adult Videos for teens; and models who are barely legal, or nowhere near, are photographed in suggestive poses in the shadow of images of grown women being sexed up to sell anything from cars, perfume, to diet pills.

There is enough sexually explicit “noise” out there for young girls to happen upon, it’s irresponsible to shove sex down their throats and excuse it away for the sake of a few dollars. I want to ask what sort of thought went into making this product, but it’s clear there wasn’t any at all. Watch this video and judge for yourself.

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

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