By Maya Brown

Maya Brown is a sophomore at Waterville Senior High School in Waterville Maine. She enjoys music, technology, photography, and anything related to theater. She has been a part of the Girls Advisory Board at Hardy Girls Healthy Women for three years, and a part of Hardy Girls since the beginning (10 years ago). She believes in empowering girls and women to speak out against the media and thinks that all girls should know how beautiful they really are. Maya is a part of her school’s GSA, school newspaper, and has co-founded a theater program called Act Out at her local elementary school. She’s excited to help SPARK this movement!

When it comes to the sexualization of girls and women, the media can’t get to us early enough. We’ve looked at how the media sexualizes girls, but what about when the media hands parents a pair of high heels and says “Do it yourself?” And I’m not talking high heels for teenagers–try high heels for babies! It’s perfect. Finally a way to impose on babies the importance of fashion and what it really means to be a woman. If they can’t walk in them, fine.  It’s walking in high heels or no walking at all. No pain, no gain. Just think of all the time it will save when they’re older, never having to suffer the embarrassment of not knowing how best to wear five-inch heels because they’ve been doing it since they were born!

At least, that’s what the media wants us to think. They want us to think it’s cute, and harmless, and funny to stick our eight month olds in heels, but what it really does is turn them into lifelong heels consumers. Girls who wear high heels as babies won’t see any issues wearing them as preteens and teenagers–and neither will mom and dad. By the time they’re all grown up they will love high heels and continue to buy them constantly.

And it gets slightly more bizarre. Scared your friends might think your darling princess is a boy? Here’s the solution: Baby bangs! Yes, wigs for babies, to “enhance their natural beauty,” (check it out Since when do babies care how much hair they have? This is just another way to force the definition between boys and girls and to make the girls grow up faster. Not even two months old and we’re already starting to worry about styling their hair? Can’t they have at least a few years without wigs and high heels?

The media is grabbing onto girls younger, and younger. There’s a ton more products out there just like these, from edible make up to padded bras for six year olds. Can’t the media and marketers step back for a few years and let kids just be kids? So get your petition signing hands ready, because before we know it it’ll be spandex jeggings (that’s jeans + leggings, for that super skinny look) for toddlers. Oh wait, that’s already a thing.