Tag Archives: Too Pretty To Do Homework

JCPenney – Let’s Face it Girls are Smarter

For anyone that missed it yesterday…
JCPenney quickly pulled a controversial shirt from its website that consumers declared “sexist.” The girls’ shirt reads: “I’m too pretty to do homework so my brother has to do it for me.”

The shirt was being marketed to girls between the ages of 7 and 16, for the price of $9.99. A caption next to photos of the shirt read: “Who has time for homework when there’s a new Justin Bieber album out? She’ll love this tee that’s just as cute and sassy as she is.”

You are what your wear:
The above shirt (on the right) was purchased for me without too much thought because an adult in my life thought it was cute & sassy. This shirt however, quickly became my most prized possession. In today’s world it might not be considered acceptable to empower a girl by putting down boys, but as a child of the 70’s, I loved this shirt. I loved it so much I barely took it off. This shirt gave me power. It gave me courage. This shirt gave me permission to go for it. Even today, some thirty years later, this picture still inspires me. I wonder where I would be today if my favorite shirt growing up read, “I’m too pretty to do homework”?

What have we learned from this in regards to social media?
What impresses me was how it was identified, how fast it spread and how quickly the company responded. Anyone remember how long it took Motrin to respond in 2008? I see improvement, and not just from the brands but how we engage with them. Huge kudos to Lauren Todd for putting up an online petition at Change.org it provided a place for the collective group to focus efforts.

If you were a designer, making a t-shirt for young girls, what saying would you put on it?