10 years ago by

I was walking down the street with Elisa on Saturday night, and we noticed that the girls seemed to be really, reeeeally bare – like hardly wearing anything at all.

They all had on super tight, super short skirts or shorts – more like panties, really, and tops which were basically bras, and they all seemed terribly excited.

I don’t have to remind you that it was below 20°F: I think we’ve already established on this blog that the city of New York has returned to the ice age.

Anyway, we were freezing, even with our coats on. We couldn’t believe our eyes.

Obviously, for a second there, I wondered if we had turned into disapproving grandmas, to which Elisa replied: “Grandma yourself!”

The more we walked, the colder we got, and the flock of half-naked girls just kept on coming.

So we went on theorizing:
“Noooo, we’re just shocked because it’s cold out. In the summer, everyone in New York is dressed like that and no one gives it a second thought!!!”
“Yeah, it’s true – I’ve noticed the shorts in New York are really really short.”*

That’s when we arrived at Webster Hall and realized that was the final destination of all the skin-tight shorts. (I mean, not final FINAL destination, of course – the butts accompanying them would have to get back home one day, right?)(I hope?)

“Pfffff, that’s the Miley Cyrus influence – this is wrong”* I said, with a disapproving look (but not a disapproving grandma look – just disapproving!!!)

The crowd was there to see a group of DJs I hadn’t heard of*, the Bassjackers (is it just me or do I not know anything anymore*?) (have you heard of them?) – and everything would have been fine in the world of butt showing, except that as soon as I saw the crowd, this is what I noticed: the girls were half-naked, but the guys were all dressed totally normally.

“I mean, in the 70s, clothes were super tight*, but it was the same for guys. I have photos of my dad in bell bottom jeans to prove it!”

Honestly, I’ve always been pretty relaxed about half-nakedness. A little less so when it comes to vulgarity, but I guess vulgarity is a matter of perspective.

Side note: Don’t Fear the Nipple

Did you see what happened to Anja Rubik when she published a photo of herself wearing a sheer top (Not vulgar – beautiful, very sexy – but not vulgar) and Instagram literally shut down her page? I thought that was pretty unbelievable.

It’s fashion, it’s artistic!!! Some people might have said.
Yes, but breasts are breasts, it’s nudity – zero tolerance or it’s all doors opened to pornography!!! The People of Instagram might have responded (I don’t think they responded at all, actually. She just had to open another account), completely freaked out by the downward spiral into porno on Tumblr.

As for Anja, she opened a new account and made “Don’t Fear the Nipple” t-shirts, and I thought that was cool. Even if I don’t necessarily want to free my nipple right this minute.

Honestly, all of this is difficult – there aren’t really any clear lines.

That night in front of Webster Hall, the thing that bothered me was of course the trashiness of it all, but also the fact that only the girls were half-naked – that they thought to be fun and cool as a young girl, they had to show as much skin as possible, look as drunk / sexy / ready for anything as possible.

I don’t know what guys go through as teenagers (I’m sure they have other difficult things to deal with) but anyway, I’m sure they don’t have the same pressure to exhibit themselves and to oversexualize their bodies. Good for them.

Now, what’s the dynamic between them and the crazy, half-naked girls?
No idea. But I don’t think boys “ask” girls to dress like that or that it’s a problem of inequality between boys and girls at all.
I just think that girls imagine that’s what they have to do to be cool and rebellious.

And frankly, it’s easy to judge – I had some big moments of stupidity when I was about 20. It wasn’t always glorious, but I learned from it.

So, all of this is just to say – I’m not really sure what to think. Do you think next time I should tell them to go put some clothes on* or should we just let kids be kids…?

* Oh la la, I sound like such a grandma! G, SERIOUSLY!!!

Translated by Andrea Perdue.


Add yours
  • I don’t think it’s a grandma comment…the fact that young girls are hyper sexualized is new compared to when I was a kid (I am 48)…there is La Senza girl for little girls!!! insane pressure…

  • a high hemline is not on my list but i can admire it on the right wearer! :)

  • Martine June, 11 2015, 4:56

    Not sure if “sexualized” is the right word. Sexualized refers to the introduction of children into the knowledge of sexuality. What you mean is that young adult women wear clothing that is excessively revealing, and young men do not. I think its just that they don’t want to look different then their friends, which i can understand. If EVERY SINGLE OTHER GIRLK is wearing booty shorts and a tank top…you don’t want to be the ONLY ONE in boyfriend jeans, and a loose t shirt. You would then effectively be dressing like a guy. The “cheeky” short thing is pretty revolting. Its not a high hemline. Its a pair of shorts that literally reveals your naked butt cheeks. Not sure what to think of it. BUt to me it mostly just looks foolish. To tell you the truth, to some extent guys ARE asking for girls to do it. They spend a whole lot of time deliberately mocking any kind of clothing that doesn’t reveal all of a woman’s body. Ask a college guy if they like it when girls wear pretty maxi dresses…and you will get what I mean. Not to pass the blame. Its still up to women to decide what they should wear.

  • Bon, Garance, merci, j’ai des jumelles de 4 ans et je viens d’avoir une vision d’horreur de mes filles dans 15 ans, en short micro moulant et tétons en transparence ***mourance***
    Sinon, pour être plus cool, j’ai eu moi aussi ma période “habits micro, le froid on s’en fout” et c’est encore pire dans les pays anglo-saxons, à Londres les filles ont des mini-jupes sans collants avec des sandales à talons en plein hiver.
    Bref, on viellit.

  • Egmonde March, 25 2014, 1:22

    Les filles à Londres se baladaient déjà en mini jupe, talon aiguille et sans collants il y a 25 ans. Ca m’a toujours sidérée. Elles avaient les jambes bleues et les le cerveau très embrumé par l’alcool et je les toisais d’un regard de grand-mère, moi qui avais le même âge qu’elle !

  • Non non non!!!
    A Londres ce sont des mini robes! pas de nombril à l’air en hiver!
    Les minis (micro) jupes et les brassières en plein hivers sans manteau c’est à Liverpool!!!

  • J’ai moi-même 21 ans et je n’ai JAMAIS eu envie de m’habiller comme ça. C’est peut-être une question d’éducation ?… En tout cas, je fais toujours attention à ne pas avoir l’air vulgaire, et surtout à m’habiller en fonction du climat. Et pourtant je mets des talons et mes jupes sont courtes. Mais j’ai toujours trouvé ça assez ridicule ces bandes de filles qui sont en talons aiguilles dans la neige, et qui doivent surement bien se les geler. Il faudrait qu’elles comprennent qu’on peut tout à fait être cool et attirante sans tout montrer.
    (et oui j’ai aussi parfois l’impression d’être une grand mère…)

  • Non, ce n’est certainement pas une question d’éducation. Une question de génération, de psychologie, de transgression des codes, d’une évolution des libertés (toutes les libertés). Cela peut choquer, mais je ne crois pas qu’il faut l’expliquer seulement par le désir de “se sentir cool” ou “désirable”. C’est plus complexe, surtout quand l’image de la femme est aussi brouillée qu’a notre époque… Le modèle qui apparaît dans les médias, sur les podiums et sur les couv’ de magazine tient autant de la business woman accomplie, de la maman comblée que de la putain coquine. Et le tout avec un culte de la jeunesse et de la minceur. Les jeunes filles qui grandissent et se construisent dans ces conditions ont le droit de s’y perdre, il me semble.
    Et comme l’a remarqué une autre lectrice, la vision d’une jeune fille entièrement voilée aux côtés de son mari en short me choque bien plus profondément.

  • Et bien quand je vois des filles de 16-18 ans, complètement fan de Miley, ou de Nabilla, qui ne sont pas connues pour leur classe dans leurs manières de s’habiller, je me dis que si, ça peut bien être une question d’éducation. Les parents ne sont pas censés leur expliquer que ces filles ne sont en rien des modèles ? Leur expliquer depuis leur plus jeune âge qu’il faut avant tout se respecter soi-même si on veut que les autres le fasse ? Leur expliquer que l’intellect passe avant le physique, et qu’on a pas besoin d’être en mini-short pour faire des rencontres ?
    Et puis peu importe l’âge finalement, je trouve ça tout aussi gênant de voir une femme de 50 ans avec un jean taille basse et un string qui dépasse, qu’une fille de 20 ans à moitié nue pour aller en boite. Je ne pense pas que cela soit une question de génération.
    Quant au voile, je ne polémiquerai pas là dessus car c’est pour moi un tout autre sujet qui n’a pas sa place ici.

  • Un jour, elles se rendront compte qu’une jeune femme habillée ça peut être très sexy et très attirant. Et elles arrêteront de s’habiller comme ça juste pour plaire. Mais c’est important de faire ça à 15 ans, ça permet d’éviter d’être frustré et de le faire à 40 ans. (psychologie de comptoir, quand tu nous tiens).

    Chouette dessin en tout cas!

  • Caroline March, 25 2014, 9:25 / Reply

    Les filles s’habillent plus légèrement à New York qu’à Paris, en tout cas, elles portent des shorts et des jupes plus courtes, ça me frappe à chaque fois que j’y vais. Aussi, ce n’est pas forcément cool de se sentir obligée de se dénuder pour sortir, surtout quand il fait un froid de canard. Bref, je suis aussi devenue une grand-mère, je pense…

  • I got an old soul and am totally in favour of sounding like my (actually pretty cool) grandma sometimes!

    Greetings from Germany and something sweet:



  • I guess I am a grandma too because I agree 100%. I have seen girls dress like this in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. They don’t yet understand that fewer clothes does not always equate to sexiness. It is disturbing and sad.

  • I live in South Florida so I’ve seen it all nothing surprises me at this point.


  • Clotilde March, 25 2014, 9:35 / Reply

    Je ne pense pas qu’elles t’écouteront de toutes façons.
    C’est étrange, votre expérience m’a fait penser à son contraire exact. Moi ce qui me chagrine c’est l’été, la pleine chaleur, bord de plage, lorsque je croise des couples de jeunes gens avec les gars en Marcel, tongs et bermudas, et leurs copines intégralement voilées, manches longues, jupes aux pieds. ça fait aussi mal au coeur. Et peut-être que là aussi, il faut que jeunesse se passe, je ne sais pas.
    Tout ce que je peux dire, c’est que mon fils ado n’a pas, quoi qu’on pense, une très haute opinion de celles “qui s’habillent comme des pouffes”.

  • Moi, j’espere qu’un jour elles se rendront compte qu’etre sexi n’est pas synonyme avec etre denudee.

  • A mon sens se sentir obligée de se dénuder pour se trouver cool/désirable/on the top, prouve le contraire : le suggéré est nettement plus sexy et montre qu’on est à l’aise avec notre corps et notre féminité, sans en faire trop. Cela rabaisse aussi les hommes , qui ne seraient capables d’apprécier une fille que si elle est vulgaire et “open”.
    Et non, je ne trouve pas que cela fasse “grand-mère” : c’est avoir de l’estime pour son sexe.

  • mathilde March, 25 2014, 9:41 / Reply

    Ne voulais tu pas plutot dire “que jeunesse se passe…” ??


  • Mathilde : je pers mon français, l’horreur !!!

  • kristen March, 25 2014, 9:42 / Reply

    This is what happens when the Kardashaians of the world are glorified and put on covers of aspirational magazines… It’s tasteless, vulgar and makes this all seem “fashionable”. Understated sexy is actually a ton sexier than baring it all. Wish these girls had more respect for themselves. I’m 33 so if I sound like a grammie… Oh well. I’d rather sound and look like a grammie than a cheap hooker freezing my bum off.

  • Mais oui, il suffit de voir la dernière photo des Kimnye à New-York pour constater.

    Kim a une robe ajourée! Elle se balade en culotte et soutient gorge dans les -5°C New-Yorkais.
    Kanye lui a un manteau + gros sweat!

    Je me pose une question: comment font les filles pour ne pas attraper une pneumonie?

    Moi sous les 10°C pluvieux et humides parisiens je suis encore avec pull, manteau et écharpe vissée jusqu’au menton :/

  • I live in LA and 13 year old girls CAN dress this way to go to Bar Mitzvahs….Very perplexing.

    I have two teenage boys who are indeed always fully clothed — on top of that? They sometimes wear sneakers and shorts to parties where girls are in their mother’s Jimmy’s. So overall the crowd looks really un-stylish in my opinion.

    Must say — that although they think some girls are “Hot” there is something else going on. I’ve seen the girls that they have crushes on and ALL of THEM look more like fresh, athletic lovely JCrew Models.

    So I don’t know who the girls without clothes are trying to please…themselves? That seems odd (and uncomfortable.) I think that there is a huge opening there for some guidance maybe you should team up with ROOKIE?


  • Clo*bee March, 25 2014, 5:21

    Amazing idea. I am so impressed by the team at Rookie, though I feel a little strange as a 30-something reading a site for teenagers. I would love to see what would come of a collaboration like that!

  • Margareth March, 25 2014, 9:46 / Reply

    Well that´s not true, the girls don´t dress like that because they want a partner; they don´t want to be in love, have sex or even don´t want to kiss. What the want is the confirmation to be desired, that´s all. It´s good for self-confidence. The sad truth: The teenagers have learned their lessons from the media and the street: Look like a twenty-five year old bitch and the guys can’t turn away.

    What Garance didn´t mention: they all look the same, everywhere around the world. Short, shorter shortest.

  • I completely agree, Garance. Sometimes girls these days think that freedom of expression and sexuality means being half-naked. And the problem is that that is not the case and is quite the opposite – people will objectify them even more. I think sensuality and lack of respect are two completely different things.

  • L'épingle March, 25 2014, 9:49 / Reply

    L’ère glaciaire (pas glacière). Ou bien l’aire glacière. Ou l’air glace, hier. Finalement, c'(est comme on veut.

  • I’ve always been a grandma and I will always be. I’ve never liked showing off skin. Not on me, not on others. I have a very low tolerance for vulgarity and well… too much skin outside the beach or swimming pool is vulgar for me. Let’s say I got very excited when button ups were trendy!
    Maybe it’s because I’ve had a very Catholic background… maybe it’s because I don’t like my body that much… Maybe if I looked like Beyoncé I would be the queen of short shorts!!! Probably?? Anyway… I love fashion so much that I want to wear lots and lots of clothes! The more fabric, the better! ;) I prefer Winter clothes to Summer clothes… but yet again, it might be to hide my body! Oh my! Have I been fooling myself all these years?? Whatever…

  • Même si nous sommes des vraies grand-mères, oui, pour de vrai…nous osons dire que c’est affligeant de voir que les filles sont de plus en plus jeunes à être déguisées en sex symbole. Nous aussi avons connu notre période de goûts plutôt douteux, cela fait partie de l’apprentissage, et nos pauvres mères n’en pouvaient plus. Mais maintenant on a l’impression que les mères s’amusent à travers leurs filles !

  • I totally agree with you!! I’m only 25 (so it’s not like I couldn’t get away with wearing skimpy clothes) but I recently went through my closet and gave away a TON of perfectly nice dresses that I just couldn’t picture wearing any more because they’re so tight and short! If I have to tug it down or into place more than once….it goes. And it makes me feel a little awkward when I see girls dressed in so little. Like I just want to go put a cardigan on them!!

  • I definitely agree – so trashy. There’s a line between being sexy, rebellious and out right naked lol

  • As someone who has raised two (male) teenagers and is old enough to be a grandmother herself, I say let the kids be kids. Eventually, we hope that they will figure things out for themselves — either that or that they will realize that the adults in their lives aren’t as clueless as they think.

  • I completely understand what you’re feeling, even for me, a 20-year-old. Sometimes these girls in NYC just don’t care about the weather. They probably planned that outfit 3 months in advance. I’ll still be bundled up in layers of sweaters.
    Your Friend, Jess

  • i guess u don’t go clubbing….

  • Carole : not so much !!!

  • This week Kim K was photographed leaving Kanye apt of Houston st ….a crochet dress with a bra and panties had dinner with Anna and appeared on a late nite show… the weather was in the teens ….Oh did i say no coat….

  • Je suis Montréalaise et je dois avouer que là bas aussi, c’est comme ça. J’ai moi-même eu une petite passe sortie en club peu vêtue, sans aller au-delà des convenance (passe très courte, j’ai vite compris que ça n’avait aucune classe et qu’à 16 ans j’avais mieux à faire que montrer mon petit corps pour plaire). Je vis à Paris en ce moment et je vois une GRANDE différence : les filles sont beaucoup plus classes.

    Aujourd’hui, lorsque je sors, je me rends compte que je suis souvent beaucoup plus habillée que certaines, même si je suis en robe et en talons hauts! Mais si tu veux vraiment une réponse à tes questions sur l’hypersexualisation des filles, regarde un peu sur Instagram quel genre de photos les jeunes filles et garçons aiment le plus : des filles/femmes à moitié nues, les fesses moulées dans des shorts microscopique dans lesquels je ne pourrais même pas faire entrer une fesse, des crop top/bustier très très sexy, etc. etc. Sur facebook aussi d’ailleurs! Et je dois te contredire aussi sur un point : certains (pas tous Dieu MERCI) garçons mettent aussi de l’avant ce look super aguichant et peu classe. Par contre, il te dirons : I’ll tap that, but I’ll never marry that kinda girl… Très triste en fait tout ça.
    En bref, ma génération nord-américaine est surper ultra méga hypersexualisée. Je ne sais pas encore comment et quand on s’en sortia…

  • I agree with Kristin – it’s the Kardashianization of the globe in part but I also heap a lot of blame on Victoria’s Secret. Everywhere you go in the US you now see loads of sleazy dressing – butt cheeks, wayyyy too much cleavage during the day,etc etc. Carrie Bradshaw brought on the colored bra showing all the time and it’s been downhill since then. How this influence manifests itself starts with parenting however.
    I have an 8-yr-old girl that ADORES everything blingy, loud, over the top and trashy:-( It’s up to me to steer her taste, delicately, in a classier direction, which is NOT easy, but I hope, doable. It’s about building the self confidence in little girls so they believe they are gorgeous (and when older – attractive) for their personality, brains and style – not for over-exposure of body parts. Athletics helps develop a sense of control and power over your body image too. At least in the US there is such a lack of class and taste anymore, but I think if we boycott companies that sell trash and do our best as women to set appropriate examples and gently guide the wee ones we might make a dent:-)
    Grandmas unite against tackiness and sleaze!

  • Totally agree with Cherie!!

    And not really about tennager but about little girls, I read this interesting article:

    I guess you need to begin when they’re small..

  • Excellent article! Excellente question… que je me pose et à laquelle je n’arrive pas à trouver de réponse claire.

  • I think that sexy does not mean necessarily naked!
    Passa a trovarmi VeryFP

  • Let it be…G! things will go the way they should go, I don’t think the same girls you saw the last evening were wondering if you (or the rest of Fashion VIPs) during Fashion Week dress on like in their dreams even below zero and snow under their heels!!!
    I personally think like Beatles just let it be….!

  • MissPimpin March, 25 2014, 10:41 / Reply

    Bon alors moi, j’en suis pas encore aux propos de grandma’, juste maman (j’ai 41 ans).
    Je n’ai pas été en reste pour ce qui a été de montrer mes fesses, mes jambes, mes seins (décolleté, transparence, tout le toutim), le dos, le nombril (ah celui-là, j’ai vrai-ment donné !!!), court, mini, fendu, bref, tout ce qui – au fond – réchauffe le coeur quand tu découvres (oh horreur !!!!!) que tu peux rider des genoux … arrgh
    Mais c’est sûr que les jeunes filles se sentent en situation de pouvoir à poil. Allez savoir pourquoi … Effet Madonna, la première ? Miley est un rejeton qui essaie juste de faire encore plus trash pour se démarquer ?
    Bref, j’essaie d’inculquer à mes filles, le style et le sens du beau plutôt que la mode.
    Résultat, elles préfèrent des derbies de chez fratelli rossetti plutôt que des repetto
    Et ça les empêche ABSOLUMENT pas de porter des trucs ultra court et de se sentir hyper réchauffées l’hiver …
    Suis pas sûre d’avoir tout bien réussi ….
    Ah les jeunes *soupir*
    Ah les vieilles **soupir** (double)

  • Thank you for this. I’ve written a few posts lately about fashion bloggers and pop stars pushing nudity, or near nudity, and caught so much flak for it. They said I was “slut-shaming” (What is this RIDICULOUS Gen Y concept? Acting like a slut IS shameful! I don’t get it. Anyway.), although I never called anyone a slut or anything slightly less derogatory.

    Like you, I am aghast at the propensity of girls these days to think that letting it ALL hang out is good. I’m not saying don’t wear minis or short shorts, but these days, even those tiny articles of clothing have been reduced by inches to the absolute bare minimum.

    So thank you for taking a stand. I know you will probably also get some static for having the nerve to raise your hand and offer a legitimate and wholly unpopular opinion, but you’re a tough Frenchie, so I have no worries!

    Merci! xo

  • G, what are you doing out near Webster Hall on a Saturday night?! All the crazies come out on the prowl to dance to bad DJs (because they can’t drink legally yet)!
    Yet, being a 20 year old myself, let them off the hook. The real problem is that girls are socialized and taught from a young age (by peers of both genders) that they will only be attractive in Kardashian wear – which leads them to dress like that for the attention of all! It’s really about teaching girls that they can be sexy in whatever they feel confident in (whether that be a tight dress or men’s clothing) and teaching boys that girls are not “available”, but rather in control of their sexuality.
    Personally, I’ll stick to my leather pants, blazers, and heels or boots for going out. At least I won’t get hypothermia.

  • Athéna5 March, 25 2014, 10:45 / Reply

    C’est sûr que ce n’est pas franchement un signe d’émancipation : le syndrome Marylin, revu au goût du jour… bof. Mais c’est vrai que je suis encore plus horrifiée, comme Clotilde, par le voile intégral : pourquoi les hommes ne le portent-ils pas aussi, hein ?

  • Hahahah glad am not the only one! I am in my early 30s and I still consider myself young but I’ve never been one to think showing too much was a good idea. I loooove clubbing but my motor is to always dress like I don’t belong there! So I make sure am completely covered cause I never want to look like everyone else in there, half naked! My only hope is that they’ll grow out of it. My problem is not the young people who dress like this, my problem is the older women who dress like this, especially in the summer! I mean there are people you meet and their shorts/skirts/dresses stop right under their butt cheeks! That’s just plain disturbing, if you see those, feel free to tell them to go get dressed.

  • Back home some girls dress like this when they go clubbing (I’m from Caracas so they’re definitely not catching a cold from it), most of the time if you’re going out on the street on public transportation you can’t wear something like that unless you’re willing to deal with some serious harassing. When I first came to Philly it was in the middle of the summer and a lot of the girls were pretty much naked (what they were wearing covered exactly what my underwear covers), which shocked me. I felt weird, I’ve been in hot climates, I’m from a hot climate, flowy bigger clothes are a lot better to deal with the heat than tight tiny ones, but here there are also people who wear a lot more clothes that I’m used to. I guess I enjoy that there is really a choice. I don’t think is fair that they sell us that fun is the same as being overly sexy, but at the same time I don’t think is cool to tell other girls not to be overly sexy if they want to be. So yeah… it’s complicated…

  • It sounds like they were dressed like professional sports team cheerleaders. Just went to a basketball game last night and it sounds like the same type of outfit. It seems like girls think they have to compete with that look to get a guys attention. I wish these younger girls would have more of a “let the guy impress me” attitude then maybe they wouldn’t have to wonder why they don’t get quality boyfriends. If they would only “advertise” their personalities, talents, etc. instead, and let their bodies be the “reward”, I think they might be a lot happier. A little “hint” at what lays beneath is okay. As for me, when I was 17, I went on my first date, with my later to be husband, in a turtle neck and corduroy! And I’m no prude. Made him work for it! haha!

  • J’habite dans le sud de la Floride. En ce moment, c’est Spring break !!!!!
    Pour voir des debordements en tout genre, il faut aller a Miami un soir d’ete……..

  • C’est pas pour dire, (j’ai 46 ans), mais ça me rappelle ma grand mère (espagnole), quand ma mère (française) est arrivée en Espagne dans les années 60 (dictature, etc…) et qu’elle était toujours habillée en micro-mini-jupes et talons de 13 cm. Le scandale!!!

    Je ne compare pas, vraiment ça n’a rien à voir, mais la première image que j’ai eue en lisant le texte.

  • Et à l’inverse, quand les femmes sont entièrement recouvertes de tissu noir en plein été et que leurs hommes sont en bermuda et tee-shirt manches courtes coloré, ça ne choque personne ? Dans ce cas précis comme dans celui que tu décris, je pense qu’il y a certaines limites à ne pas franchir. Et la frontière est vraiment mince entre sexytude et vulgarité…

  • Moi je suis désolée mais ma seule question, c’es: comment elles font?? Est-ce-qu’on est moins frileux quand on est jeune? Parce que moi les courants d’air dans le mini short par -5°C, je serais bleue en 2 minutes et bleue, c’est pas sexy. Ou du moins, pas encore. Qui sait. Bref, je me demande bien comment font ces jeunes warriors de la night pour ne pas attraper la mort, ne pas avoir honte, ne pas trouver étrange de se promener à poil en hiver, ne pas avoir les tétons qui gèlent sur place. C’est moi la grand-mère, en fait.

  • The so called Short cuts are present in my town too. So the talking allways ends with you’ re not in vogue. Ahha, so funny! and I don’t live in NY!
    Thanks for this great post!

  • Totally agree, Garance! It’s sexier to leave something to the imagination!

  • You’re not a grandma, Garance. You’re just classy. And I’m here for that! Sexy is SO much better when it’s left to one’s imagination.

  • i think for girls (maybe especially in america?) it takes a long time to learn that there are other ways of being sexy and alluring, besides dressing like a miley cyrus music video.

    …But usually you have that realization the instant you see how stupid and unsexy women look tottering around half naked when it’s 20F out.

  • Good article but what’s wrong with grandmas?? Hopefully we will all be one someday no? Grandmas get a bad rap. Instead of trying NOT to sound like a grandma, embrace it! Age brings wisdom!

  • ahahahah trop marrant!
    Il y a 15 jours même histoire! Avec mon mari, dans les rues de New York, un pic de température négative et là une horde de gamines en brassières micro jupe SANS COLLANTS CELA VA DE SOIT avec des écritures sur le visage et moi double doudoune. J’ai eu l air bête et je demande à une demoiselle si elle n’a pas froid, elle me répond deux mots Austinnnnn Mahoneeeee ( ?? nouveau Justin Bieber??). Bon, j ai pas le souvenir de m’être collée une pneumonie pour Patrick Bruel (oui je suis vieille!!!). Vous si?

  • Hahaha! Si pour Patrick on s’est quand même casséeeees la voix! et je suis presque sûre que certaines lui ont balancé leurs petites culottes ;-)

  • It’s a shame that while our country is trying to promoting “female power,” girls are still conditioned to believe (by magazines, media, advertisements, etc.) that they have to show off their body to be desirable. I don’t think it’s “grandma” of you – I think it takes self-respect and confidence to realize that you don’t have to wear the tiniest bikini at the beach, or tiniest dress at the club or be attractive. Girls need to realize that guys categorize women by: Girls I want to bang, Girls I want to marry. And they are two VERY different things!!!

  • Jennifer March, 25 2014, 11:51 / Reply

    Garance, you were in the East Village during prime drinking, oops, I mean clubbing time. It has turned into an urban Disneyland for the so called “bros and hos” set as an EV blog calls them. It is pretty surreal in the neighborhood these days, particularly from Thursday to early Sunday morning. Poor girls drunk out of their mind staggering around in short, skin tight clothes and 5 inch heels in subzero weather working it for the male gaze. Having been around and about here since the late 70’s and making it alive through the 80’s, thought I had seen it all. Instead of getting angry at the obnoxious and naked drunks who make my once quiet block sound like a frat party I try (really, really try) to have compassion for these poor kids raised by very crass media.

    Their Grandmothers should be more involved ! By the way Nanas (in my case) have wisdom and experience and are sorely needed. This culture that worships vulgar youth could use some more “Grandma” moments so I hope you can turn thinking like one into something to be proud of. Also, as mentioned above, please team up with Rookie. I got her book for my 14 year old niece and it completely opened her eyes to other ways of looking at media and, most importantly, at herself.

  • For real, girls (and women) need to put some clothes back on. I remember someone showing up to the office in a short, jersey, skin-tight mini skirt – in the middle of -20?C weather. It’s not just in the clubs people need to dress appropriately. “Clubbing” clothes is hardly a new thing though… guys are always dressed normal and for some reason girls are dressing in scraps of cloth just short of a bikini. It’s pretty ridiculous. Especially in the Winter! Why freeze like that???

  • It’s not grandma to question these things, c’est bougrement intelligent! It’s the mainstream media (now I sound like Sarah Palin) that perpetuates it. I wish more actresses and photographers wouldn’t think they need to make the actress naked to make her “alluring” (Terry Richardsonization). Look at these GQ covers for man and woman of the year (link below). Men in fancy tuxedos receiving the honor, and woman naked. Remember when Lindsay Lohan did the same pose for Rolling Stone when she was just 18 or so? These are the messages that girls get growing up-the most interesting thing about you is your body.

  • Catherine Davis March, 25 2014, 12:03 / Reply

    I hear you Garance and I don’t think you sound Grandmotherly! I am 43 and I am quite shocked sometimes these days by what I see young girls wearing. I suppose every generation looks to the youngest generation and is confused and dismayed by what they see– I’m thinking of Victorians being appalled when girls started showing their ankles etc. That said, I was at a cafe with my father recently and the young girl in front of us had a pair of shorts on that were so short her cheeks were hanging out and my father said, “It’s too bad that girl couldn’t get some short shorts!” — Not exactly the conversation I wanted to be having with my dad. To a certain extent I think the current trends are indicative of our society becoming more sexually permissive and young women owning the previously male entitlement to casual sex. I know the young girls are fighting against slut shaming and more power to them I say. Even so though I think they’d be well served to take Marc Jacobs advice– “Young girls need to learn that sexiness isn’t about being naked.”

  • Dunno… Chaque génération a eu son moment Young and free non? “moi djeun trop cool, vas y que je mets une minijupe!” Dans les années 70 c’était simple, tout le monde était a poil. Y a plusieurs points qui me font réagir a ton poste :
    1) l’effet micro short – soutif : c’est tellement miley cyrus, rihanna… Tu sais quand Vogue met Kim Kadarshian en couverture, ça m’attriste quand même. C’est un peu la reconnaissance des carrières sex-tapes – Nabila / zahia et compagnie : “plus tard ma fille, montre tes seins et tes fesses ; c’est tout a fait normal de nos jours dans notre société. Après avec l’argent tu pourras t’acheter les habits de Celine, Balenciaga, Saint Laurent : l’argent achete tout, même l’élégance”

    2) j’avoue que des fois la mode est trop pointue pour moi et m’intimide : les pantalons larges, les grolles a semelles pneus, les chemises bien repasses sous les pulls sans forme, les crop top, les manteaux soutanes… Tellement pointue qu’il faudrait presque un guide d’utilisation “que mettre avec quoi”. Alors qu’avec une belle robe moulante et tes talons, là tu es sure de ne pas te tromper!

    3) alors, que penses tu de Kim et kanye en couverture de Vogue?!!!!!!

  • Hey oui, la jeunesse change, maintenant les enfants ressemblent à des jeunes adultes (au lycée par ex)….
    Les émissions sur les mini miss me font vomir par contre, je trouve ça légèrement abusé de la part des parents qui parfois obligent leurs enfants à faire des concours…

  • There is a limit to everything. I agree with you about Vulgarity. For me vulgarity is the limit of Fashion.

  • Yes Garance, you should speak with the girls…!
    I really think you can learn them something about elegance etc…Less is not Always more !!!

    Bisou de Belgique.

  • Elizabeth March, 25 2014, 1:39 / Reply

    Go Grandmas! I often feel like a Grandma myself with my disapproving internal dialogue…but I wish I had the courage to exhort style and substance over skin and hyper-sexuality.

    I think the Anja situation is a good example of our culture’s tendency to misinterpret or completely misunderstand the difference between appropriate sexual expression and porn. AND, I think having open conversations about clothing and sexualization is so needed, especially with young women. I think we “grandmas” have to lead the charge…even if we seem “uncool” in doing so. : )

  • Oui oui les mecs se font violence aussi ! :-)

  • Orangeufunny March, 25 2014, 2:02 / Reply

    I worry about young girls putting themselves OUT there at such a young and vulnerable age. Don’t they know that these fully clothed young and older:( men are ogling them with lusty eyes.?? All they are looking at are body parts that are too easily revealed. Do these young ladies really want men to objectify them? They may say they don’t care now, but they will care later. Women have been fighting being sex objects for decades. Now it seems we are going right back from where we came. Our greatest attributes are not under our clothes. They are in our hearts and minds.

  • Est-ce le printemps et l’arrivée à pas de loups (quel enfoiré ce loup!) de la quarantaine (qui me nargue depuis que j’ai 30 ans et que la fille en couverture des magazines a l’âge d’une fille que j’aurais pu porter dans mon ventre (flippant…)..), mais je me suis faite la même réflexion dans le métro le Week-end dernier (et celui d’avant mais en mode découverte “tiens ceci , cela”, alors que le WE dernier c’était le réflexion en mode “et non, et!!”)
    des bandes d’étudiantes en talons aiguilles (rouges , pour faire plus sobre) et mini jupes, robes, shorts (strings???), qui allaient danser (malgré les apparences) . Entre les parenthèses, ce que je me suis dit en les voyant… Elles me dérangeaient, je ne sais pas pourquoi, enfin si , un peu: parce que je ne pouvais pas me permettre ça en dehors de la chambre à coucher ou de la soirée halloween , parce que je n’avais pas connu ça (mais qu’est ce que je foutais à ce moment là???), parce que je me suis sentie “dehors du marché ” (j’avais l’impression d’être le rayon “classique” de chez H et M), puis je me suis dit “mais tu réalises que là tu envisage le problème sous l’angle de la “consommation”? “. Ces filles me font sentir que je suis un morceau de viande sur un étal et que je suis à vendre…et que le consommateur va comparer les compétences (beauté, glamour, intelligence si le consommateur est un consommateur responsable) et les tarifs (par rapport à la durée de vie et au coût de l’entretien)… En fait je les juge mais je suis , au fond, aussi atteintes qu’elles dans la définition de leur féminité et dans le rapport assez malsain qu’elles entretiennent par rapport à leur image (calibrage, compétition, séduction..). Je ne pense pas que je suis vieux jeu, mais trop vieille pour jouer à leur jeu, et en même temps, ce jeu me dégoûte.. je voudrais qu’il n’existe pas.. Parce que j’adhère profondément aux idées féministes et que ces préoccupations me lient au regard de l’homme de façon dégradante et archaïque.
    J’en parlais avec ma soeur (qui a deux ans de moins) et elle a fait le lien avec le combat des fémen et le fait que ces filles soient très jolies . est-ce qu’on revendique notre sexualité ou est-ce qu’on s’offre en poupées d’amour quand on s’apprête autant?

  • … suis grand-mère (et oui ça arrive et c’est génial dit en passant…), je travaille avec les jeunes et la mode micro-short et jupe/robe ultra courte sévit ici aussi, mais si je dis que lorsque s’est bien porté et avec la bonne météo, le bon contexte, c’est choquant ?
    Et qui n’a pas porté un jour des chaussures trop petites ou trop hautes ?
    Par contre la mode Nabila-Zahia, comme il a déjà été dit, a quelque chose d’inquiétant… Faire dans la provoc. avec son corps n’est pas donné à tout le monde, et beaucoup (pas toutes) de filles qui suivent cette mode ont souvent d’autres problèmes… et le premier est bien qu’il n’y a jamais eu quelqu’un pour leur dire qu’il y a mieux pour les mettre en valeur, ce que toute fille (puis femme) recherche, et qu’elle doive d’abord se plaire à elle-même…
    Et puis, je reprends ta phrase “il faut bien que jeunesse se passe…”

  • Je ne connais pas New York mais je suis sidérée aussi par les Anglaises à moitié nues dans le froid… je n’ai jamais compris. Cependant, il y a quelque chose derrière qui me chagrine : en France, on ne le fait pas parce qu’on trouve ça vulgaire, mais soyons réalistes, c’est surtout parce qu’on ne PEUT pas ! Vous avez déjà essayé de vous mettre en mini jupe dans le métro parisien, ou à Marseille, ou meme Toulouse ou autres ? Bon courage, moi je ne le ferais pas, sauf accompagnée par ma bande de potes et encore. Ca prouve quand-meme qu’il y a des endroits où les filles peuvent porter ce qu’elles veulent sans risquer de se faire agresser…et c’est bien triste pour notre soi-disant pays libre. Meme si, moi aussi, je trouve ça bien plus classe de laisser un peu de mystère, et je pense que ces filles n’ont rien compris à la séduction…elles comprendront plus tard (grandma power!! et j’ai 29 ans…)

  • Worse is wearing warm weather clothes everywhere in the winter. I’m tired of seeing young women freezing to death because they can’t figure out how to feel attractive or confident while staying (somewhat) warm. It appears so desperate.

  • I love what you’re saying. I think these girls need to put effort into making themselves look chic and sexy without showing all they’ve got. It seems most men agree that a bit of mystery is more sexy than baring it all in public.

  • Absolutely it’s not a grandma talk. Here in Scotland I can see the same. I ask myself: “Why? Let’s leave something for imagination”.
    I think it’s sad. I hope my daughter who is 9 years old wouldn’t be like these girls.

  • aahha j’ai 20 ans et je ne m’habille spécialement court (enfin ok j’ai peut-être des jupes courtes mais je ne pense pas du tou être vulgaire ou super sexy) (sauf si on considère que les pulls looses c’est shocking dans ce cas je suis super shocking:)) mais je vois très bien à quel style tu fais référence. Honnêtement quand j’étais plus jeune, ma mère ne voulait pas que je mette de shorts au lycée elle trouvait ça irrespectueux vis à vis des profs toussa, donc quand je suis arrivée en première année de fac wouhouuu j’ai fait péter les mini short, les trucs à paillettes, même si on était loin du style mini pouf (selon moi), mais les vêtement c’est l’un des rares trucs que j’assume totalement chez moi alors m’habiller en mode soirée pour aller en cours … Et le pire dans tout ça c’est que je n’ai pas du tout un style “lolita sexy” ou je ne sais quoi. Je pense que c’était juste “une libération” ahah et je me suis vite calmée ! Mais clairement dans plusieurs lycées ou collèges en France maintenant les minis sont interdits parce que les gamines se ramènent avec des trucs ras la touffe et on est pas à la plage. Je pense que certaines s’imaginent vraiment que c’est le comble du sexy alors que pour moi (du moins maintenant) être sexy c’est justement ne pas tout dévoiler sinon ben…y a plus rien quoi!

  • Well, I’m 21 and I don’t think you sound like a grandma. Really.
    There is a fine line between feminism and sexuality – &- vulgarity and sluttiness.

    I was not wearing anything over the top before, but… after watching a couple of movies, one right after the other I had a period in my life when I almost wanted to put on a bunch of oversized, unattractive clothes and try to be invisible to the whole male population. Thankfully, I overcame my fears and, realized that it is not healthy to live with such concerns over your head, life is unpredictable and if something bad is going to happen to me then it will… Anyways, there is always a ‘happy medium’ that we need to look for.

    The movies that I watched were “The Accused” (1988, with Jodi Foster) and “I Spit On Your Grave” (2010 version, although the original is from 78′).

  • Nalletar March, 25 2014, 3:31 / Reply

    I totally agree. It is possible to be stylish and warm at the same time, even sexy! Goose flesh isn´t very sexy. If girls really insist on dancing in these shorties, it is all right inside, but why don´t they wear overcoats or capes or ponchos or blankets when outside? Garance, my secret goal is to become a sexy grand mother. There are some plans…

  • Jenelle March, 25 2014, 3:48 / Reply

    I say, don’t be so judgmental. Let them get away with dressing like this while they can. Also, they are dressing for the concert where they’ll be dancing and sweating. Let the young be young and look ridiculous! It’s fleeting.

  • Rien d’étonnant à ça lorsque l’on voit les modèles proposés par les médias et autres pop-stars…désolation ! Je me dis que j’ai réussi l’éducation de ma fille, lorsque je là vois sur scène, punchy, pétillante et sexy mais en aucun cas vulgaire, ni aguicheuse ou provocante !

  • As a doctor I say: “at least one of those girls will end up with a Pyelonephritis”, as a mother:” Oh my, I hope my girls won’t do that!”….. The line between sexy and vulgar is very thin sometimes and honestly dressing like this in “Ice Age” is just stupid…. xxx

  • Okay…I’ll bite! How do you get a kidney infection from walking about naked in the cold? Frostbite in freaky places maybe? But a Kidney infection?

  • I am 20 and I still think there needs to be more clothes on girls when they go out. They look great, but I have done that same look, and I cannot bring myself to do it again. So uncomfortable, cold, and I never get talked to by the cutie I would be eyeing for half the night. I have the most trouble when getting dressed to go out dancing than for any other event in my life.

  • Moi ce qui me choque c’est leur facilité à être considérées comme “objet sexuel”. Je ne sais pas comment elles assument tout ça…elles doivent probablement le subir un peu (il paraît que maintenant à 12 ans ce n’est plus l’âge de la première galoche mais de la première pipe!)..
    La précocité des jeunes filles (qui zappent quasiment l’adolescence en passant des fringues d’enfants à celles de femmes) est aberrante. Je me sens quelques fois moins féminine que certaines nanas de 15 ans…! C’est à dire que je me sens dans ces cas là comme une grand-mère ;-)

  • camille Reddress March, 25 2014, 4:17 / Reply

    I’m with you. I think that the fact it is not equal across the genders is weird/creepy. If it was a load of half naked teenagers of both sexes we could say, “Oh well, kids”. But why is it just girls? I think culture is saying to girls that over sexualised dressing is a marker of moving into womanhood. It disturbs me, for one.

  • Phindile March, 25 2014, 4:22 / Reply

    G, I think you hit the nail on the head. As a 24-year old (going to 25 in a few weeks) my dress sense has completely changed. Now don’t get me wrong, I love showing a little leg and cleavage and have a pretty large collection of sheer tops, but I think the difference is proprietary and the question you posed which is WHO are the girls trying to impress. I learn’t not so long ago to dress for myself, for my taste and what feels comfortable to me, albeit a mini skirt in freezing weather doesn’t sound like fun, nor is it sensible. When I go clubbing I realize that so often the women (who are my age and some younger) leave NOTHING to the imagination. I thinks its an insecurities thing, because lets be honest for a second, you see Rihanna in barely there shorts and a bra and you think “damn that’s sexy” and of course every guy agrees with you so you try to emulate that because you want attention. Same with Miley. In the end we forget that their jobs are to entertain and that whilst being half naked is OK for them and the lives they lead, we need to be more dignified, more put together. In fear of sounding like an old Grandma too, I think that we all grow out of it at some point, when we realize that the guys who like you in no clothes are the ones who will screw you and leave, and the people who are able to see you, black jeans and hooded up, are the people who are generally going to stick around. For now I say let them go through it, we all had to, and sooner or later they will learn, like I had to learn that being half naked is not sexy, nor is it the way I want to present myself to the world.

  • Ugh totally agree. I often wonder if the half-naked girls have a plethora of insecurities or have mistaken the top for a dress and are willing to get frostbite in places one ought not to.

  • Izabela March, 25 2014, 4:57 / Reply

    I felt the same grandma-way (I’m 38), when I saw girls in very very short shorts going to communion in church in Boston,MA where I live. I made the note to the Sunday school teacher about it…and her “American” way to justify the shorts was: “God can see us all naked…” (btw I’m Polish). Sure, case closed…

  • hahaah, Izabela, that made my day. how european of you! (btw, I’m Slovak)

  • This isn´t a grandma opinion, it is true and I get you. There is a fine line between sexy & vulgar and now a days it seems to be a very blurred line (yes, I am blaming Robin Thicke on this one)!!!
    *writes while having a hot cup of tea & listening to Billie Holiday*

  • despina March, 25 2014, 4:59 / Reply

    i don’t think that when young girls dress like that necessarily think about being sexy, but rather about being accepted. Unfortunately this is the message society sends them through magazines, films, TV shows. You have to dress like that in order to be noticed by guys or accepted by girlfriends, if you don’t, you are a prude or simply don;t belong, and we all want to be accepted. Dangerous message to young girls that their worth is only in their looks. You can get on Vogue cover if you are overly sexualised and famous for a sex tape and marriage to famous singer, you don’t need to be smart and educated, just be sexy and cheap, that’s what women are for. Therefore, It is not just the young girls that need to have awareness and change, it is all of us…always being mindful about projecting what is important – self-respect and staying true to yourself, when you emphasise what is special about you, it means you respect yourself and it is then that you shine in every part of life…even in a club full of half-naked girls:)

  • It’s a great post for the time… Cyrus in her glory has come out full force with the tour, Rihanna is going to be awarded by CFDA, Kimye are on Vogue of all things… Fashion is going through a hypersexualized, trashy phase, and it’s become particularly mainstream. My thing is… when you’re in the college years as a girl, there is a crazy personal, sexual renaissance that happens, and it’s important to explore that (in a consenting way).

    Now I can’t stand the “new” booty short trend… the cut is in a triangle so it realllly accentuates the cheeks, but I remember 10 years at 17 that my crazy friend was also wearing booty shorts and I was like OMG – too short.

    But I admired the hell out of her for the confidence to wear them.

    Now? She is the hottest, stylish girl I know and wouldn’t be caught dead in booty shorts.

    It’s exciting to feel sexy for the first time though, many girls don’t until they get to college and they have this newfound appreciation for themselves. And it definitely goes through phases that most grow out of.
    Most of the girls outside of Webster are ‘dressing up,’ feeling free in their bodies and can’t wait to dance around, get some numbers and drinks. I don’t see the harm in flaunting your sexuality in those years at all, particularly when it’s in a normal, party condition. Not every girl is going to get appreciation from guys, some just love looking hot like that. That kind of confidence can grow in amazing ways when a woman grows up and matures.

    And the men in full clothes… yes, that’s to be expected. Believe that once inside though, plenty of those shirts came off!

    So no harm done. Just let the young ones be young and the older ones maintain the status quo- that way they definitely do outgrow it!

  • Nathalie March, 25 2014, 5:13 / Reply

    Bonjour Garance,
    1ère fois que je me risque à un commentaire, mais le sujet est percutant, et peut sembler paradoxal sur un blog ou on parle mode et tendances. Pour répondre à votre question , je pense: ni l’un ni l’autre. Dans ce contexte, difficile de dialoguer sur cette question. Au fond, nous sommes je pense d’accord sur le fait qu’il ne s’agit pas de porter un jugement sur ces jeunes femmes, mais de se questionner avec elles sur le fait de conserver son libre arbitre en toutes choses, et en particulier en mode. Oui la mode est créative, belle, amusante, frivole et délicieuse, et c’est amusant et délicieux d’en jouer, de se sentir jolie, attirante, voire provocante, et dans la tendance, mais à condition de le choisir en toute connaissance de cause et pas de se laisser imposer un standard a visée commerciale qui parfois rétrograde la femme au rang de seul objet de plaisir.
    Ce n’était donc pas le lieu ni le moment, mais il me semble que les médias qui nous parlent de mode et de tendance: votre blog Garance, les blogs mode, la presse mode, sont au bon endroit et au bon moment pour nous rappeler à toutes, quelque soit notre âge, que nous pouvons nous délecter et nous amuser de tout ça, mais ne pas oublier que nous avons le choix de suivre ou pas, comme le dit si bien l’expression, SUIVRE ou pas la mode.
    Je vous lis toujours avec plaisir, en rêvant grâce à vous d’une vie new-yorkaise, que jusqu’à présent je ne fais qu’imaginer.
    Bien sincèrement.

  • Last weekend I attended a family brunch. I was telling my husband that you know you are getting old when you start thinking the teens’ skirts are too short (I’m 32). I could not believe my cousins’ dresses (15 and 18); we were celebrating my grandparent’s 50th anniversary, come on!! Anyway, I think the main point is that girls need to understand that they are worth because who they are, their feelings and actions. Worth does not come from being desired by men; cars are also desired by men right?. So, if they decide to become “sex objects” from time to time, that’s fine (and even fun), but that has to be a very conscious, deliberated, decision. Being truly sexy goes beyond being “sexually desirable”, its about having an interesting personality and that requires intelligence, self-esteem and self-respect. I can tell at least 50 women that can be sexy and seductive even wearing a burka !

  • Thank you so much for writing this Garance! I go to Barnard in New York and it makes me feel sad that all the cool girls dress like Urban Outfitters models – and part of the sadness comes from the fact that I’m not slim/leggy/tall enough to dress like that! The stylistic preference that seemingly boasts liberal feminism but really is just a cover up for objectifying women is really problematic.

    (and now I am speaking through the grandma soul within my body!)

  • Je trouve personnellement qu’il y a une certaine hypocrisie sur le sujet… J’ai presque dix-sept ans et il m’arrive de ne pas comprendre les réflexions des adultes sur la manière qu’on les filles de mon âge de s’habiller. Évidemment que le combo microshort-brassière par -5 degrés est affligeant, ridicule et vulgaire, et ça me fait tellement de peine de voir des petites collégiennes en talon de 12 avec une clope au bec…
    Mon péché mignon à moi, c’est d’aller parfois en cours comme si j’allais à un mariage. Avec une belle robe bustier, des bas, des escarpins vernis et du rouge à lèvres ; parce que, honnêtement, si l’on ne court pas les rallyes d’aspirants bourges, il n’y a pas tant de prétextes que ça pour porter ce genre de fringues.
    Et ça choque énormément de gens, qui me regardent de travers, me font des commentaires désobligeants ou sexistes, voire qui m’engueulent comme si j’étais arrivée en monokini. Alors qu’il n’y a absolument rien de vulgaire dans ma tenue, c’est peut-être très habillé, mais ça n’a pas grand-chose d’indécent…
    Et curieusement, une fille en microjupe et nombril à l’air, eh bien… c’est la norme, personne ne dit rien ou se contente de mater complaisamment. Mais qui le leur explique à ces filles, et plus jeune j’ai été comme elles, qui s’habillent parfois de cette manière parce qu’elles n’arrivent pas à imprimer que la fille en culotte haute et bustier transparent qu’elles ont vu dans le ELLE de leur mère ne s’habille pas comme ça tous les jours, que c’est une séance photo qui vise à explorer une inspiration, un univers. Et elles s’imaginent que c’est ce qu’on attend d’elles, qu’il faut s’habiller pareil pour être considérée comme belle et à la mode. À cet âge, on se cherche, on cherche à plaire aux autres, à se rassurer par leur regard, et copier ce qui est considéré comme une référence en matière de mode reste sécurisant. Elles ont voulu plaire et faire un “good job” et on les traite de petites pouffes, et ça fait mal quand on a cru bien faire ; je me souviens d’avoir pleuré en rentrant chez moi après avoir été insultée toute une journée à propos d’une tenue que j’avais passé des heures à élaborer à partir d’un magazine de mode, juste parce que j’avais 14 ans et que je n’avais aucune idée de ce qu’il y avait derrière une séance photo, je pensais que ça voulait juste dire “habillez-vous comme ça et tout le monde vous trouvera belles”.
    Il faut réfléchir avant de juger ce genre de comportement, et c’est vrai que dans la majorité des cas les motivations sont affligeantes et le résultat vulgaire, mais parfois c’est aussi une petite fille qui veut grandir et qui croit que c’est ce que signifie devenir une femme, parce que quelque part c’est ce que lui montrent les magazines, les clips vidéos et ses stars US préférées qui multiplient la provoc’ ultra-sexualisée…

  • Adeline March, 25 2014, 5:37 / Reply

    Ce post m’a tout de suite rappelé la première fois que je suis sortie en boîte au Pays de Galles il y a un an. Le choc de ma vie! J’ai réellement cru qu’il s’agissait d’une soirée à thème et qu’on ne m’avait pas prévenue. Et pourtant je n’ai “que” 20 ans, donc il ne s’agit pas seulement d’une question d’âge, mais aussi je pense d’une question de culture (et sûrement d’estime de soi par la même occasion).

  • I think that if you do comment, your wisdom will fall on deaf ears. I’m 21 and I am guessing (because I completely I agree with you) I am a major grandma, Personally, I think you can be unbelievably sexy even when you are covered. It’s that slight peak of skin or bodycon piece which shows the curves of your body which girls should reach for and not just undress to get attention. Anyway I see it, I think guys are more sane these days.

  • Margaux March, 25 2014, 5:45 / Reply

    Super article, et un vrai débat! Je pense que c’est plus une tendance que l’on remarque dans les pays anglo-saxons.. Je n’ai pas du tout l’impression de voir ça à Paris. Et donc c’est une différence de culture qu’il faut respecter sans la juger comme tu dis même si ça nous démange!

  • I guess it’s a bit of a snowball affect..? So one or two start wearing hardly anything.. then it becomes almost competitive hardly wearing anything..! Loved the comment about the cool athletic girls.. well not so much the athletic bit – but hopefully there will be some girls who actually wear clothes and have a personal unique style of some sort.. and they will gain more attention and it will all un-snow ball itself.. or maybe that is unlikely..!

  • Ioana Voica March, 25 2014, 6:31 / Reply

    Garance it’s such a pleasure to read you! Just hilarious… Besides that, trashy is just trashy not necessarily sexy, not to speak about the amount of alcohol required to overcome the cold.

  • When sexy looses subtlety, when it screams ” look at me, over here! I need you see my body, look at me!” That’s when it crosses over to vulgar.

    15-18 years ago I was helping a friend get their kid packed & ready for camp, it was midnight & some item had been forgotten about so we ran to a Walmart that was open. As we cut through the girls/ children’s section we saw pre-teen bras geared for 10- 12 year olds that were padded. Now I ask you, why does a child need a padded bra? The point of a padded bra is to emphasize the chest & appear more endowed/ sexier. Do I believe children are becoming more & more sexualized? Yes. Do I feel like a grandma ? Not at all!

  • LOVE YOU for saying this. When I see young women parading around half-naked, I start to think that laws can only do some much for gender equality. Us women are perhaps even more in charge of shifting societal perceptions of woman’s role. If we want to be respected and have the same advantages as our male counterparts, we need to speak out and cover up!

    P.S. Have you ever noticed that female nudity on shows like Game of Thrones decreases as the actresses become more famous? Women in positions of power wear clothes!

  • Mathilde March, 25 2014, 7:25 / Reply

    Throwing my invisible two cents, mais tout ce que tu décris se rapporte directement (à mon sens d’étudiante en communication et féminisme) au concept de post-féminisme. Si ca t’intéresse de te pencher un peu plus sur la question du pourquoi du comment les filles aujourd’hui s’habillent très très court et très très moulant, Rosalind Gill a écrit deux très bons articles, “Postfeminism and media culture: elements of sensibility” et “from sexual objectification to sexual subjectification: the resexualization of women’s bodies in media”. De même, sur la question du choix de cette “récente” (je dis récente parce que le post-feminisme est un concept qui est arrivé en même temps que des stars comme Nicki Minaj, Beyoncé ou Miley Cyrus, qui voient leur corps et de leur sexualité comme un argument marketing au même titre que leur musique pour booster les ventes) re-sexualization des corps féminins, Elspeth Probyn a écrit “choosing choice: images of sexuality and choiceoisie in popular culture”, qui éclaire bien cette question.
    Je tenterais bien moi même d’expliquer ce mouvement mais ca prendrai des heures parce que je ne suis pas concise du tout, je préfère laisser les expertes/chercheuses en parler à ma place. C’est un concept intéressant en soi, ca permet de justement comprendre beaucoup de comportements et d’arguments médiatiques et marketing d’aujourd’hui.

  • Leaving something to the imagination is always so much more alluring

  • Mais enfin, entre 15 et 18 ans on ne pense qu’au sexe, ( après on est bien obligé de penser aussi à se préparer un avenir).

  • Abigail March, 25 2014, 8:01 / Reply

    I do not like it either but who are we to judge? They are young, they are learning, they will (hopefully) learn from their mistakes.

  • maria maria March, 25 2014, 8:07 / Reply

    si des mecs aussi cools que pharrell font des videos ou les mecs sont hyper classe et les nanas a poil comme dans blurred lines,eh bien ca transmet un metamessagesi tu veux un mec comme moi faut que tu sois une chaudasse excitee”,voila si le showbiz branche cautionne ca ,on na pas a s etonner de ce qui arrive apres….

  • Je crois que nous vivons dans un monde de junk culture où la vulgarité et la médiocrité prennent beaucoup de place. Il y a de la confusion autour de l’identité féminine et dans les pays anglo-saxons surtout, il y a une dichotomie entre la vie des jeunes filles et leur vision de la féminité. Elles passent des sweatpants et baskets au mini-jupes et talons de 10 cm. C’est comme si elles avaient une image caricaturale de la féminité. Il faut voir les étudiantes de McGill le vendredi soir à Montréal; c’est franchement pas sexy et vraiment vulgaire.

  • La photo est superbe.


  • Stephanie March, 25 2014, 8:58 / Reply

    I’m assuming that when you said the girls were going to see a DJ, that it was a rave or a semi-rave. Somehow in the world of raves, girls wear nothing but bras and panties!

  • Hi Garance,

    I liked your article (très drôle!) but as one of ‘those girls’ the tone of many of the commenters on here is frankly offensive.

    I’m 21. In winter and in more formal contexts (work, family events etc) I dress more conservatively – knee length dresses and tights, ballet flats, blazers, all that – but in summer and for parties/concerts, I love my booty shorts! They’re comfy and they make my legs look great.

    Many of the people here seem to be saying that girls who dress like this are doing so purely for male attention, or that dressing like that ‘sets feminism back’, or that these girls must have massive insecurities… I can’t speak for everyone, but I’m not especially insecure, I’m not dressing up for guys, I have a straight A average and I’m a vocal feminist. I just like booty shorts, and I don’t think wearing more clothing makes one morally superior.

    Those here who say that ‘men prefer mystery’ or ‘if you dress like that men will want to bang you but not marry you’ seem to be missing the point a bit. I”m not dressing up toattract a man to marry (???). I literally could not care less about what some dude thinks of my outfit, and I wish society (including other women!) would stop judging my fashion choices in relation to perceived male opinion.

  • True story!

  • Jenelle March, 26 2014, 11:02

    Yes. Finally. Agree completely.

  • Wow, Cassie, you have almost made me change my opinion!

    I have a 17 years old step-daugther, and when all the family judges her about her clothing (butty shorts and crop tops all the year), i just stay in silence. When i was her age, i used to dress like a grandma or more like a nun (long skirts, buttoned up shirts, black thights, flats and block heels). I was insecure about my body and in no way i was attending to get male attention. I dressed that way because i wanted, it was my deliberated choice, my fashion style at the moment. Having said that, i still think i was doing something wrong, trying to hide beneath all those clothes. I think my step-daugther is doing the same, just the opposite way, she’s hiding beneath all that exposed skin. It’s not about gender, feminism, media, fashion, it’s about fear: we have fear from ourselves. It’s easier to put a label on our foreheads (“neuter”, “slut”) than figuring out who we really are and what we really want.

    There’s nothing wrong about butty shorts at festivals, but if you feel you have to dress that way every time you meet with your friends, even if old man stares at you and try to grab your but, well, let me say it, there’s something not quite rigth going on.

    Thanks Garance for the opportunity to stop and think about it!

  • Et du coup les pseudo star/starlette/inconnue-qui-aimerait-etre-connue et autres redactrices de magazines inconnus au bataillon qui se baladaient completement a poil par 3° a Paris pour la fashion week, on en parle?
    Parce qu’on va pas se mentir, les petites nanas qui se baladent en poumpoum short quand il fait un froid polaire, elles ne sont pas allées chercher l’idée dans un catalogue Damart.
    Alors euh… Si on commençait pas expliquer à ces cruches qui se baladent en S/S 2017 en hiver 2014 qu’une robe d’été avec une banane Chanel (oui, une BANANE Chanel), ça n’a rien d’acceptable, même quand on se veut néo-artistico-enavanceo je pense qu’il s’agirait d’un grand pas pour l’Humanité.
    – nan mais sérieusement… Qui souhaite le retour des bananes?! No limit –

  • I’m with you Garance! There is a total double standard now, it’s weird. I also don’t get this whole leggings as pants thing and WHY are all the tops in all the stores so sheer??? It’s like when it was cool to show the top of your thong in the back (thanks, Britney Spears, for your cultural contributions). The hyper-sexy look isn’t very creative or interesting, and I have no idea why it’s considered empowering to walk around almost naked. Especially in subzero weather.

  • Of course it’s a problem about inequality. It’s called objectification. The really neat thing about it is that the subjugated class (women) have been conditioned to objectify and sexualize themselves, to reduce their self -worth to an image. The boys don’t have to do anything to assert their power. The psychology has been in place since these children were babes. We need to empower young women so that they can assert themselves in ways that are more powerful than skin shows. Yes, women have the right to bare it all…but I don’t think that’s the route to empowerment.

  • I’m 30 years old and a grandma! Because I just don’t approve of trashy, half-naked dressing, as far back as I remember. Maybe because it’s the way I was brought up (conservative) and the culture I live in (conservative). I lead a group of girls in their teens, and while I really don’t tell them to wear clothing that will cover them from head to toe, I encourage them to dress modestly but still very ladylike; find clothes that suits them well. They at least owe it themselves to look good, and dress well. They have to do it for themselves and not for others.

  • Hey Garance!

    I was born and raised in Montreal (dans une famille francophone !!) which has relatively the same temperatures than New York. As a teenager, we would always dress in really short shorts and t-shirts because the humidity in the summer is like crazy! It gets so hot, especially with the heat waves going up until 40 degree celsius, and soooooo humid! So we basically have no choice. When i was 19, I went to visit some family/friends in south of France… and let me tell you that I wasn’t feeling comfortable wearing my tiny shorts because everyone was looking at me strangely. I realized that to me, wearing short shorts was really normal… And it was normal to everyone else! No one even notices or comments anymore, unless when we see the butt cheek (that’s a no go!). But it wasn’t to be sexy or vulgar, but really just because i didn’t want to wear pants with this temperature! Of course, wearing such short bottoms when it’s -10 outside is totally ridiculous. It’s for kids. But i guess it is a matter of perception, when you are used to something, you really don’t think about it that much, but when you are in new environments, its normal that not everything has the same meaning to everyone.

    Sur ce, passe une superbe semaine! Ca fait des années que je te suis, plus précisément depuis que j’ai découvert une de tes illustrations en 2008 en faisant des recherches pour un cours de beaux-arts, et je dois dire que je ne lasse jamais! Gros bisous de Montreal… P.S YOU SHOULD COME OVER! :)

  • Yes hate it when boys make comments like – why are you dressing like a boy? and make girls feel like they SHOULD be in tight-fitted, skin-baring clothes.

  • Your refreshing honesty and sense if humour are a big part of why I really enjoy your blog Garance! Thanks for pointing out this double standard which really bothers me… Not how anyone should or shouldn’t dress, but the way that young girls feel pressured to keep pushing the proverbial envelope (or shorts!) to feel validated and sexy. How much skin is enough and how much, too much? There may never be a clear answer because in an ideal world, it would be a totally personal choice. But unfortunately, I don’t think it is just yet.

  • I think for starters you shouldn’t be judging other women, women should support each other, these girls are confident enough to show their bodes and know they are beautiful (as all women are) if they feel sexy who are you to tell them thats not sexy?
    Just to clarify I am very conservative myself when I dress, and of course I used (and sometimes still do) judge women based on their appearance but thats not the right thing to do, we must constantly do the effort to stop that kind of thinking.

    I find some of your comments to be so wrong:
    “I worry about young girls putting themselves OUT there at such a young and vulnerable age. Don’t they know that these fully clothed young and older:( men are ogling them with lusty eyes.?? All they are looking at are body parts that are too easily revealed. Do these young ladies really want men to objectify them? They may say they don’t care now, but they will care later. Women have been fighting being sex objects for decades. Now it seems we are going right back from where we came. Our greatest attributes are not under our clothes. They are in our hearts and minds.”
    This is the rape culture all over again, instead of teaching girls to hide their bodies (EVERYONE has one) and be afraid, people should teach men to respect women.

    “Do these young ladies really want men to objectify them? ” So, the solution is to cover yourself from head to toe so poor men don’t objectify evil sexual woman. NO!! we’ve seen how this works for other nations.

    Just live and let live, as long as people are educated women should be able to wear what they want without having to fear for their own life.

  • Orangeufunny March, 26 2014, 1:57

    Hi Katty- I used to feel like you. I used to think that men just need to push their eyeballs back in their heads, and I should be able to walk practically naked and not fear that I would be ogled, touched or attacked. In an ideal world, that might be possible. However, I believe that this world will never be ideal. Men will always be biologically drawn to the female form. The more that is showing, the more they are drawn. It is nature. You can teach a man to abstain from making rude gestures, comments or stares, but you can’t take away their natural born urges to mate with nearly naked females. Unless you want these men to secretly or not secretly feel this way about you, why do you tempt them? You and other ladies may dress how you like. I don’t think dressing like this anywhere is going to garner the respect you expect from any man.

  • The freezing nights in London look exactly the same: extremely short skirt with bra for the teenager girls.

  • Visions et réflexions identiques lors de séjours en Angleterre…

  • Wait, Webster Hall is still around?

    *slowly walks back to rocking chair and sits down*

  • Sometimes the clothes look like they shrunk in the wash…or…the girl had a growth spurt over night.
    I will say that being surrounded by half naked girls make us sexy from within type ladies stand out more. By dressing for our shapes and oooozying cool confidence despite being surrounded by vulgarity we become the diamonds within the rough.

  • Non, je ne suis pas d’accord avec l’article. Des filles, habillées pour aller à une soirée ou concert ou tous les jours, en short, ou jupe courte, franchement, elles font ce qu’elles veulent non ?! Ce sont ce genre d’articles qui diffusent une pensée où le court, rime avec vulgaire, et vulgaire, les filles ne doivent pas l’être, sinon gare à elles, franchement, on fait un véritable retour arrière non ? Qu’est-ce que ça peut bien faire qu’elles s’habillent comme ça ? Y’a pas des sujets plus sérieux et plus importants sur les femmes et leur conditions, que le nombre de centimètre de leur tenue ? Quand est-ce qu’on va nous lâcher avec ça ? On est jugées tout le temps, sur tout, par les hommes ET les femmes. Et à regarder de plus près, essentiellement sur l’apparence physique et le vestimentaire… On s’est battues pour avoir le droit de porter le pantalon, et maintenant on doit se battre pour avoir le droit de porter des jupes. Ces filles sont à un âge où elles apprennent leur féminité (ça dure même toute une vie je pense), laissez-les tranquilles.

  • J’ai 23 ans et je vais sur mes 24 ans très bientôt. Je suis le genre de jeune femme très réservée au niveau habit. Par contre, je me suis toujours demandé est-ce que c’est moi qui est trop coincée pour m’habillée de façon légère, les shorts très courts ou bien les décolletés vraiment plongeants (j’avoue que j’aime beaucoup mes seins et c’est une des parties que j’accepte de légèrement dévoiler) et bien plus. J’ai rencontré mon homme dans un club et il m’a dit quelques années plutard qu’il se rappèle que j’étais habillée comme une villageoise. On a bient rit! En somme, c’était une façon de dire que pour une tenue de club j’étais habillée de façon très concervatrice lol! Je me suis fait à l’idée que je ne suis pas faite pour ces tenues provocantes et je suis très bien avec ça. Certaines femmes présentent des insécuritées et tiennent à plaire aux autres et fondre dans la masse.

  • Comme le dit Margaux, on ne voit pas trop ça à Paris. Mais faut-il vraiment s’en féliciter? Je n’en suis pas si sûre. Même si elles sont parfois too much, de ce côté-là nous avons beaucoup à apprendre des Anglo-Saxonnes. Peut-être pas en termes de style, mais en termes de liberté certainement. A Paris, il y a encore des filles qui n’osent pas s’habiller comme elles le souhaitent parce qu’elles ont peur de susciter les commentaires voire l’agressivité des hommes (c’était mon cas, maintenant je n’ai plus l’âge de mettre des shorts), et je trouve ça bien plus triste qu’une dégaine vulgaire. Bon, je dévie peut-être un peu du sujet là, mais je crois que ça me touche plus que l’hypersexualisation des jeunes filles.

  • i agree with you 100%. But then i ask myself where is this pressure coming from on young girls to be hypersexualized?? is it the parents/is it the fashion industry/is it advertising?

    I went into monoprix the other day and saw bikinis (not monkinis but string BIKINIS) for 2 year old. I literally said in my loudest voice “WHAT THE FUCK?” in the middle of the store. Who would by that for a toddler?????

  • Esmeralda March, 26 2014, 4:59 / Reply

    I´m 30 years old.. and also Grandma club!!.. Simply i cannot understand what it is happenning right now.. I don´t believe that is a ” feminist” action.. I know, when we are younger, we think .. omg.. that´s cool!!.. but after you realize that self-confidence come in another very different way.. But i think they play to be “adults”.. with over makeup, with clothes that just make them feel “women”.. or? For me ist just horrible see a young girl, that looks that she doesn´t respect herself.. Maybe ist just a point of view.. I don´t have any “friend” that dress in that way.. Maybe could also be “worthy” to ask them.. Why do you dress in that way? Just to know..

  • I so agree with you Garance….it has been shocking me for the last few years

    all young girls in short shorts looking like baby prostitutes

    I blame it on the porn pop of Beyonce, Rihanna and Miley ….on social networks that spread this imagery around , on vapid celebrities who have to shock to get noticed, on Kim Kardashian and her reality show that send the message that you can be famous for being a moron and making a sex tape….all of this has made women go back 100 years years

    It is sad to think that a young girl now has to look ( and behave ) like a slut just to feel that she belongs…where ? to which crowd ? If a girl looks and behaves like a ho’ she will be treated like a ho’ you get the respect that you deserve , so don’t expect any if you are sending out a message that you are in control of your body and your image and you want to look like a baby prostitute because you are feeling like one

    I am not a grandma. I am just a normal adult observing all of this with great concern and sadness
    and believe me…there are a lot of normal non slutty young girls out there…..the vulgar slutty majority does not make the norm

  • Si tu es une grand mère vis à vis de la nudité affichée, moi aussi Garance !
    Je reste persuadée que la classe ce n’est pas de mettre des shorts ultra courts et des robe raz les fesses.
    L’allure d’une femme doit être subtile et l’élégance en découle automatiquement…
    La bise !


  • This is not a grandma post at all. This sort of hyper sexualized trend is quite alarming because it all lies in the objectification of women and young girls. Obviously women got the right to be who they want to and dress as they want to but this not look at all as the path to empowerment.

  • The fact that you have written this post really demonstrates the fact that this is an issue of inequality that exists within our society. Every day girls (as well as grown up women of all ages) are given the message that their main asset is the way that they look. Even the comments here from women and girls about the benefits of dressing in a “conservative” and “lady-like” as opposed to a “trashy” style just demonstrate the ridiculous way that society imposes on women the expectation that their looks should be the most important way that they can assert their value and power in the world. This is not a message that boys or men ever receive, and whether or not you have intended to promote this message through this post, you have done so by judging these young girls based on how they are dressed. It’s our natural inclination to judge women when we see them dressed in scanty clothing, but I don’t think that this is a particularly helpful attitude to take, especially seeing as it essentially just plays into the hands of the power imbalance that exists within our society. The moment that an article about how covered up a woman is or isn’t in public ceases to be a remotely interesting topic for discussion is the moment that we can claim some of that power back as women.

  • When I was a young teenager, The Spice Girls were in their late 20s and promoting Girl Power. Today young girls look to Rihanna and Miley Cyrus who promote taking drugs, being submissive to men, drinking too much and rolling around in zero clothing. I think it’s really sad that there are so few positive female role models for young girls to look to.

  • Respirer. Soupirer. Laisser passer la jeunesse. On n’y changera rien et lorsqu’elles auront compris que suggérer est mieux que montrer, elles iront se rhabiller tout en finesse, féminité et délicatesse. Bon, pourtant, moi j’adore les shorts, hein, mais pas n’importe lesquels non plus et pas dans n’importe quelle circonstance ;-)

  • I thought I had auntie syndrome. :D
    This is a big thing in Serbia also. Girls are wearing such short dresses, other vulgar clothes and platform pumps. And they are all the same, copy paste with different hair colour.
    On the other hand, guys are looking better and better. So there is a big style gap as well as social gap. Wrong emancipation and sense of what freedom is. Or is it that girls are subconsciously aware there is 2 times less guys than girls? So the only way to get their attention is to play on men’s evolutionary instinct to respond to nudity before style ? :)

  • I think this is part of youth and they won´t hear what you have to say, they will do what they want, I remember that I used to think that I was always right when I was 18, so don´t worry, this will pass when they grow up :-)

  • Catherine March, 26 2014, 7:54 / Reply

    Look at the music videos. It’s the same thing. Guys in normal T-shirts and jeans; girls in skimpy clothes, nearly naked. There was a time when guys were under pressure to be chiseled, but sloppy seems to have become perfectly acceptable for men.

  • Please, have a look this short video, that shows how the sexual role of men and women are very different:

  • I just find it disturbing. I was at a hotel once and they were playing dance music, and this little girl, maybe 5, was doing this dance routine, swiveling around all seductively, and everyone was cheering her on. And I just couldn’t help but think, geez, she doesn’t even HAVE hips yet, can’t we wait a bit to start with this?!

    Shani x
    She Dreams in Perfect French

  • Elizabeth March, 26 2014, 10:41 / Reply

    While it would be lovely to live in a world where our intentions were perfectly interpreted, we just don’t. Last summer I was in central London with my goddaughter, not quite 12. She was wearing shorts and a t-shirt, with no intention other than to be comfortable (and because that’s what her friends wear) & I was shocked to notice a man in his 30s leering at her. Certainly girls/ young women should have as much freedom as possible to express themselves, but I do worry that peer group/media pressure is promoting some pretty worrying role models.

    Comment above is right it’s Liverpool & indeed Newcastle where girls out on the town never, ever wear coats- to the extent that retailers stock fewer coats there

  • Katherine March, 26 2014, 11:47 / Reply

    I’ve noticed lately that when very young couples go out on dates together, the girl is often in heels and a dress and totally done up, while the guy is wearing a ball cap and in baggy jeans and a T-shirt! Why the discrepancy? Why do girls stand for a) their guy looking like a total slob while they went to such an effort, and b) sending the message both to her date and to those around her that the discrepancy – the implicit suggestion that girls are sexual objects and that guys need not hold themselves to any standard – is not just okay, but expected?

  • could not agree with you more… boys don’t seem to make (or to be willing to make) any effort.. probably because it is all too easy, but that could be the mother in my head speaking..

  • I second that.
    I was amazed when I went to my gyno’s last week and there were pretty ladies sitting in the waiting room, all dressed up, accompanied with slobs wearing track suits. :@
    Why this discrepancy? Ajajajaj

  • For those with 10 minutes to spare, check out this very well done talk by Cameron Russell, a woman who has been modeling since about 16. She does an amazing job communicating the very troubling standards for beauty that we soak up. I say we soak them up because the imagery is so pervasive; it is nearly impossible to avoid.

    Anyhow, she is lovely and bright and makes a lot of very impressive points.


  • Alejandra March, 26 2014, 12:43 / Reply

    I am that kind of person that complains when girls shorts are too short, their boobs are spilling out of their tops, &c. Mind you, I am an 18 year old girl.

  • Je pense plutôt que la question n’est pas qui leur impose de s’habiller comme ça, mais quoi. Quand je regarde les marques pas trop chères qui sont sensées cibler des filles de mon âge (j’ai 19 ans), c’est souvent super moulant, très court avec des talons de 36 cm. (Exemple avec les micros shorts cet été. Sérieusement les gars, POURQUOI.) Evidemment, il y a des exceptions, mais c’est quand même récurrent dans la plupart des cas.

    Je pense vraiment que c’est l’industrie de la mode qui a conditionné les filles à s’habiller comme ça, genre “t’es jeune t’es cool t’es fresh, habille toi avec 3 fils tu t’en fous t’es au dessus de tout ça”. Avec ce qu’ils proposent dans les magasins, ce qu’ils montrent dans les magasines de mode spécialisés pour cette génération. On peut être scandalisée en voyant des filles à moitié à poil dans les bars de Londres, mais quand on fait un petit tour chez Topshop ou autre, on se rends compte que les petites robes moulées à mort, les micro jupes / shorts etc. c’est juste la normale.

    Après, il y a plein d’autres facteurs en plus qui interviennent, par exemple il y a la culture pop avec les chanteuses genre Miley Cyrus qui… ben, sont Miley Cyrus. Ça démocratise et dédramatise le fait qu’on peut s’habiller avec 10cm de tissu puisqu’elle elle le fait et c’est trop cool trop rebelle han ouais.

    Bon après, je fais la mamie, genre “je prends du recul sur cette industrie honteuse car j’ai vécu dans la vie ma petite dame, écoute donc ma sagesse d’esprit”, mais moi aussi, de temps en temps, je fais péter un truc un poil court ou transparent. Donc bon, je me la ramène, mais je fais partie du truc aussi.

    C’est une super bonne question en tout cas, la limite entre sexy et vulgaire… C’est peut être une question de point de vue finalement, de culture.
    Pour ma part en tout cas, c’est vis ta vie, ton âge mais un peu d’esprit mamie ça ne fait pas de mal quand même !

  • Do not worry! I also feel like that. I am from Spain, but live in New York now. I am 23 and I already feel like a grandma when I compare my short skirts with the American and Spanish younger girls!
    It is funny because if you work at a big corporation here, you are not suppose to show your shoulders or wear a skirt above your knee, always wear tights, conservative clothing….. Then, you go out and it is completely the opposite! The more skin you show the more points you get? I did not get that memo… or I am glad I did not get it.
    Now, I appreciate more looking elegant than showing more skin….

  • Haha, moi aussi j’ai mes moments que j’appelle de “réac” (bon ok, “vieille c… réac”)… et y a pas longtemps je me suis dit la même chose en voyant un attroupement de lycéenne dehors avec les premiers rayons de soleil de printemps…
    Je sais pas ce qu’il faut en penser…mais ce qui me chagrine c’est l’idée passée que c’est du “féminisme rebelle” alors que c’est le comble de la soumission au machisme; la question n’est même pas de la nudité (qui peut être élégante ou même une vraie revendication féministe quand on regarde les femen), ou même “le sexe” car assumer le fait qu’une femme peut avoir du désir est louable, mais c’est le côté “sexe soumis au désir masculin” véhiculé par des clichés comme Miley Cirus qui me dégoute (le côté pute quoi), ce n’est même plus rebelle, juste attendu, pathétique…sans caractère!
    J’ai eu des “erreurs” de jeunesse, mais ça tenait plus à vouloir être originale à tout prix…

  • It may not be my style, but I actually think it’s quite cool that they’re not scared to wear micro-shorts and teeny tops when their bodies are less than perfect. When I was growing up (I’m 37), many girls would wear actually longish shorts to go swimming in the ocean because they were so ashamed of their thighs…I say if they’re happy, who are we to judge? I don’t care whether a woman goes around naked or covered from head to toe, so long as she feels that it’s HER decision and not enforced on her by others. I live in Paris and sure the girls here are covered up, but mostly because dressing in any other way leads to instant harassment from men (and stern looks from women) the moment you leave your apartment. If, in addition, you dare dress in something slightly revealing when you are a few kilos “de trop”, well you can be sure that everyone on the metro will be tut-tutting! So my feeling is, live and let live!

  • Wow. Kids will be kids and I recognize I’m not really into kids.

  • Il y a tellement de commentaires qui semblent dire que être couverte = avoir de l’estime pour soi, du respect, et qu’apparemment être habillée sexy et choisir de montrer plus de son corps est contraire au respect de soi, et ça c’est juste du slut shaming. Moi je trouve ça cool qu’elles ne soient pas complexées, j’ai porté du noir et des vêtements couvrants pendant des années, et ça n’a rien à voir avec le respect de soi, c’était juste du mal être. Il faudrait arrêter 5 minutes de juger les gens sur leurs corps, y compris ce qu’ils choisissent d’en montrer. Le regard réprobateur sur la nudité contribue autant à la sexualisation du corps que la nudité elle-même dans les médias. A l’époque où les gens s’offusquaient de voir une cheville, la cheville était vue comme hautement sexuelle: plus se couvrir ou non n’est pas la question, c’est le regard qu’on porte sur le corps qu’on doit questionner.

  • Bon, ben moi je ne comprends pas quelque chose… How all these women commenting on this post are so quick to judge a fellow woman. Si les filles veulent s’habiller en jupes courtes et brassières, c’est à eux à décider. I’ve seen a lot of comments slut shaming (that is very much a thing, and it was proven in the same comment that tried to disprove it), and I don’t think that’s where you were coming from, Garance. Girls, and I should say women, are more than welcome to choose what to wear of their own accord. Whether that means showing up to the club in a bra, or showing up in sweats, it’s their perogative to do so. It doesn’t matter whether the boys are fully clothed or not –again, it’s up to them. I think what’s so shocking is that we’re always used to tell girls to cover up, and we’re seeing a lot more of them feel comfortable in their own skin and want to show it off. We need to be careful about confusing hyper-sexualization with a woman’s choice to choose what she wants to wear. As long as they’re dressing for themselves, who are we to judge?

  • Pour moi, plus je grandi (j’ai 26 ans) et plus je me sens libre avec mon corps et au-delà du regard jugeant de la société.
    Je veux dire c’est que mon corps m’appartient et que monter un bout de ventre ou de cuisse n’engage à rien, ne signifie rien. C’est juste une façon de s’habiller et de s’exprimer.
    Bien sur qu’il y a cette sexualisation de la société qu’on peut un peu partout, même dans la façon dont on juge une longueur de jupe, mais j’aimerai bien qu’on laisse les filles disposées de leurs corps et qu’on apprène un peu plus aux garçons le concentement mutuel.

  • Irène, vous avez totalement raison! Très bien dit.

  • Blackstones March, 27 2014, 7:32 / Reply

    C’est tout à fait ça ! La mode Miley Cyrus (et tu peux ajouter ses copines Riri, Madonna et Nicki Minaj à la liste) !

    (Je ne parle QUE des filles qui sont littéralement à moitié nues en mode fesses apparentes sous le short et/ou brassière + compensées ou talons. Je préfère préciser, parce que les amalgames, ça va aller là !)

    Bizarrement, ce n’est ni en croisant des filles peu vêtues dans la rue, ni dans le métro que ça m’est venu. Mais en regardant “Clueless” (que je n’avais pas revu depuis longtemps et qui m’a foutu un gros, GROS coup de vieux !!), j’ai réalisé que certaines tenues du film étaient “courtes” pour l’époque….mais c’est tellement soft par rapport à aujourd’hui !!!
    (d’ailleurs, c’est l’exemple parfait que la classe est indémodable : à part 2 ou 3 écarts dû à la mode de l’époque, les looks de Cher étaient quand même TRES sympas ! Et puis bon…Alicia Silverstone quoi !)

    Je ne pense pas que “s’habiller” de cette façon soit une question d’âge (je connais des femmes de mon âge, qui n’ont aucun problème avec le combo talons-nombril-micro-short, et j’ai 27 ans).
    Je l’ai eu fait aussi, mais depuis mes 14 ans la perspective de montrer mon nombril (en dehors de la plage) ne m’a jamais tenté, pourtant mes copines sont les première à me dire “au moins, toi tu as le ventre pour ça” donc rien avoir avec un complexe quelconque. C’est juste que ça me gêne, alors je ne le fais pas c’est tout. Même si maintenant c’est une mode.
    C’est sûr que je vieillis, surtout là-dessus (je porte, et j’ai toujours porté des mini short sous mes robes ou mes jupes, pour éviter de partager ma culotte avec le peuple, en cas de coup de vent inopiné).

    En même temps, la reine du twerk n’a que 20 ans, à 27 ans Riri fait ses courses en body, et à 56 ans Madonna..est elle-même et c’est déjà suffisant. Sans compter les autres, il n’y a pas que ses trois là. Forcément, pas mal de gens vont suivre puisqu’il y en a pour tous les âges !
    C’est aussi dans l’ordre des choses. Ce qu’on trouvait choquant il y a 10 ans ne l’est plus maintenant, et dans 10 ans, ce qui nous choque maintenant sera encore pire ! (oui, c’est possible).

    On ne peut pas empêcher les gens de faire ce qu’ils veulent. Moi à partir du moment où ce ne sont ni des gens que je connais, ni mes enfants….It’s not MY problem.

    Si ELLES se sentent à l’aise comme ça, tant mieux…

  • Yep, it’s that time of the season “hardly wearing anything at all”-girls sprout like mushrooms… no matter what the weather is…

  • Ok, so you say it is beautiful when adult, beautiful (mature?) woman shows off her private parts and then you’re surprised that young girls are doing the same? Would it be any better if all of them wear the same pretty sheer bluse as Ania?

    Let kids be kids but don’t forget that they are on their learning curve. If they hear “don’t fear the nipple”, they will come with “don’t fear the clittoris”. But we both know, it’s not about the fear.

  • I know the feeling , feeling grannish… But I honestly think, and always thought that dressing almost naked for young girls going out is just dangerous. At least get dressed for the way to your destination, to not get cold and kidnapped – raped.
    This is also why im sick of the media showing skin everywhere, making girls think the only way to get noticed is by being naked.. Sad world :(

  • Un petit air de Charlotte Casiraghi la femme de ton illustration !! :)

  • Stephany March, 30 2014, 3:05 / Reply

    Frankly I would have preferred a post about hair :)

  • To offer a little perspective, I just would like to share that I sometimes (when it’s not freezing, come on, I’m not crazy) like to dress ‘half-naked’ in a minidress to enjoy the sense of bare skin connecting to the world – wind, sunshine, light rain, whatever – but honestly also to insist on my right to wear what I want and be treated the same, either way. It’s a provocation, to me, and if one of those girls in that crowd dresses down (haha) for the same reasons as me, I’m glad to see that it worked. I say, talk to them about why they do what they do, and applaud them, if you find out that you actually like their reasons. I’m 28, if that matters.


  • Un bon sujet! J’ai adoré lire les commentaires!

    Je pense que les personnes comme toi peuvent avoir une vraie influence sur les jeunes filles de cet âge, et elles en ont besoin parce-que les parents ne savent pas toujours quoi faire face à cette hypersexualisation de leur enfant. On fait toutes des bêtises à l’adolescence, mais c’est aussi un moment où on doit apprendre à se respecter et ça c’est pas si facile à comprendre à cet âge-là!

  • Hi Garance,

    Yeah, it’s funny, isn’t it? Even at school dances or formal events the girls are often wearing less than half as much as the men.

    Take a look at the book Female Chauvinist Pigs, and the intro to Simon Doonan’s Eccentric Glamour (you can read it in the free preview on Something to do with how women are portrayed as objects, but also that women themselves take on popular standards of appearance and start enforcing them.

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