Yesterday, I read about Megan Grassell, a high school entrepreneur who started Yellowberry, a company that makes cute and modest bras for young girls. Grassell explains that she got the idea after a shopping trip with her younger sister, during which she realized just how much the industry sells sex appeal, even for young teens. She writes on her website:
“We came across the same thing at every store: push-up features, underwires, and padding that were all part of the standard to make a girl “grow” two cup sizes. I remember thinking to myself in anger, “What is the hurry to grow-up so fast?”
“This company is my effort to help other girls who feel the same way I do: that our society pressures us to look and dress a certain way at a very young age. Mary Margaret [her sister] should feel confident in whatever she wears, not that she is lesser than her peers if she looks different than a goddess-like model ten years her elder.”
Grassell’s commitment to authentic femininity is inspiring.
It is painful to watch so many beautiful girls at my university, my sister’s high school, and even my brother’s middle school struggle to understand their femininity in the midst of a hyper-sexualized culture. Young women are fragile enough as it is without the shallow standards of unattainable beauty put forth by the companies to which Grassell alludes.
Our sisters, daughters, and friends deserve so much more than that.
I applaud Grassell and her efforts to show girls that femininity is not merely about sexuality, but authenticity.
Lilia Draimeis a junior at a Catholic university in the United States. Her biweekly column addresses issues that impact young students struggling to live their faith on college and university campuses, whether those institutions be Catholic or not.