By Nancy Gruver
Even with cable and the Internet, many girls still turn to Seventeen, Cosmo Girl and Teen Vogue for the latest on celebrities, fads, fashion, makeup, music, movies, and other “must-buy” products.
Many of these magazines’ articles -- and ads, which can fill as much as 75 percent of the pages -- prey upon girls’ normal adolescent desire to be popular and attractive. They send the damaging message to girls that they are lacking and need certain products to try to make the grade. And they can have quite an impact: Studies have shown a relationship between reading fashion and beauty magazines and loss of self-confidence and healthy body image in girls.
How can we protect the girls in our lives from these hostile messages? Ban the magazines? I don’t advocate that, even though my daughters eventually banned Seventeen themselves, because they felt depressed after reading it. Teen girls need to make such decisions themselves. Rather than turning Cosmo Girl into forbidden fruit, try this:
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