The article linked above, written by Lois M. Collins, discusses the findings of a study conducted by researchers at Ohio’s Kenyon College. The study found that nearly a third of clothing designed for girls sizes 6 to 14 can be classified as “sexualizing.” Of the 15 companies/brands included in the study, 69 percent of the clothing items sold had childlike characteristics, 4 percent had sexualizing characteristics, and 25.4 percent had both childlike and sexualizing characteristics. The article states that this clothing targets young girls who want to appear “edgier” in order to appear that they’ve grown up. This, I believe, prays on tweens who are in an awkward stage developmentally. Not really children anymore, but not yet teenagers, tweens may feel pressure to “grow up” before they’re actually ready to do so. Presenting them with clothes that are both childlike and sexy will put more pressure on them as it might make them feel as though this is what they should be wearing. Another point the article makes is that by marketing to tween girls, companies hope to receive brand loyalty. If these companies can receive girls’ business earlier on, they have a better chance of gaining loyal customers. In my opinion, it’s awful to push young girls towards inappropriate clothing they’re not yet ready for in the name of business.
Collins, Lois M. Study: 1/3 of girls’ clothes is ‘sexy’ as marketers target tweens, teens. Retrieved from http://www.deseretnews.com/article/700134396/Study-13-of-girls-clothes-is-sexy-as-marketers-target-tweens-teens.html.