This weeks task was to, as a group, research a pressing issue that we were against, develop it into a case study and then plan how we would act against it. My group decided to attack the growing popular trend of “Vajazzling” by picking up early on how younger girls are thinking it’s the next big thing they HAVE to do because everyone else is doing it and the media are paying so much attention to it. Here is our work which is we collaborated on Helena Borthwick’s blog: http://helenaborthwick.wordpress.com/2012/01/29/the-only-way-is-vajazzles/
My part was all the background research and to construct the argument agaisnt what Amy Childs is doing because I find she glamourises sex for girls of too young an age.
The Only Way Is Vajazzles…
So what is a vajazzle??
According to UrbanDictionary, vajazzle means ‘to give the female bits a sparkly makeover so as to enhance their appearance.’
So yes, it’s when girls have their lady parts blinged!
It first became recognised in 2010 with a couple of celebrities publically coming out and saying they liked vajazzling.
This then led to Amy Childs from the reality tv show ‘The Only Way Is Essex’ making it ‘fashionable’ and ‘Popular’ in the UK.
<— example of a vajazzle! by Amy Childs herself!
Now what could be the problems with everyone getting vajazzeled up? Is there even a problem at all?
Vajazzles are seen to be sparkly and glitzy, this may then encourage young teenage girls to buy them. They see role models of theirs telling people to try it out, effectively glamourising vajazzles. This can lead to problems such as young girls wanting to get one because they’re deemed ‘cool‘ or their favourite celebrity has encouraged them.
The show ‘The Joy Of Teen Sex‘ has done this very problem. Within the show it showed vajazzles and did a couple of segments on it. From 18 minutes in it talks about vazzling (glamourising sex rather than teaching it) the audience of this show is young teenagers, what is this content telling them? That they should go out and get vajazzled? And what are the implications you’re sending out if you have one?
The Guardian went further to slam this show.
“What is visible is the increasingly blurred line between sex as pleasure and sex as performance. The Joy of Teen Sex doesn’t quite differentiate between the two.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/feb/11/joy-of-teen-sex-channel-4
Joy of Teen Sex does not teach teenagers about sex but how they can enhance their experiences using things like vajazzles. This show should teach about safe sex and sexuality not how to become a porn star!
Shows like ‘TOWIE’ and ‘The Joys of Teen Sex’ have had an obvious impact on younger girls and vajazzles, as these shows are often aimed at their age bracket.
You can now buy 99p vajazzles at 99p stores, making them accessible and very easy to get ahold of. Perhaps they are sold so cheaply is their demand for them by younger girls who can’t afford expensive, salon designed Vajazzles.
The rise in popularity even leads to things like this!
But these ‘celebrities’ (and I use the term loosely) like Jedward are meant to be role models for the young to look up to.
Evidence that the effects vajazzles have on young girls can be read about on this forum website designed for mothers. http://www.netmums.com/coffeehouse/advice-support-40/serious-stuff-43/535660-vajazzle-my-daughter-wants-get-one-what-would-you-do.html
A mothers 14-year-old daughter wants a vajazzle. Although she ends up applying it to her stomach like gem transfers, they’re still available to these young girls. They’re provocative.
‘My daughter came home recently and told me that her and her friends had purchased some Vajazzles from some website like the one ive linked here. When I realised that they are crystal tattoos that are placed around the vagina, naturally i was disgusted! … My Clare is only 14 and I’ve told her she is NOT having that done.’
‘I think the gem transfers are very pretty although yes on your lady bits should be reserved for adults.’
Coleen Nolan from Loose women is also appalled by vajazzles for little girls which is also termed as ‘junior jazzles‘
“A Vajazzle for little girls is one of the most disgusting things I’ve heard.”
“It doesn’t matter where grown women choose to stick their body adornments – that is their decision.”
“But I hate the thought that little girls might think it is cool to copy them. The makers of these Junior Jazzles say that they are not encouraging children to use the jewels in the same way as older girls in their late teens and 20s, but the reality is that kids always copy older people.” http://www.mirror.co.uk/celebs/news/2011/04/14/coleen-nolan-appalled-by-vajazzles-for-little-girls-115875-23060001/
Now what possible solutions could there be to stop glamourising vajazzles to young girls??
The main problems is the way vajazzles are publicised, they are seen as cool by the likes of Amy Childs who encourages their use.
It shouldn’t be on shows like The Joys of Teen Sex which seems to glamourise it to young girls. And perhaps they should be kept as salon treatments so to appeal to the older women.
However, the people behind vajazzles such as Amy Childs can state that it isn’t glamourising them towards young girls and that
Any attacks on the companies and ‘celebs’ behind vajazzles could have legal action taken for publicly attacking them for intentions they may not have had such as Amy Childs & Jennifer Love Hewitt.
No legal action has been implemented yet when it comes to vajazzles, mainly because there hasn’t been much campaigning about it in the past. However, a few discussions and bad reactions are starting to appear on sites like ‘Netmums’ and shows that there is an issue and there should be some action taken.
Here is presented a possible campaign against Vajazzles if we were to highlight the idea and raise awareness of this issue.
Caption: The Modern Day Vagina
How it will create an impact?
The caption is very important here as it creates the link between the bright lights and these crystal gems. Christmas time is for children, decorating their trees and houses. It’s a joyful time full of bright, colourful, sparkling lights. With Christmas being a time for children, it represents the ideas of children decorating their bodies with sparkling gems.
Here is a nice quote from two women from Joys of Teen Sex :
‘It is very kind of like, ‘I’m going to have sex over the next 10 days if you get it done though isn’t it?’
‘Noo, you don’t have to show it to a boy (pause) It’s not all about boys, you can show it to your girl friends, just sat round having a cup of tea and get your vajazzle out.’
Is that what vajazzles were designed for really?! In the back of our minds, we know the answer is no.
We could use the power of tv advertisements of a young girl playing about in her Moms clothing. She goes through her Moms bedroom draws and quite clearly finds a vajazzle kit and starts applying on her arms and legs. It would show the innocence of the child and how she wants to be just like her mummy.
Now by the end of this blog we have said vajazzles, vajazzled and vajazzling way too many times. My last question though is, why on earth would any girl want one?
It may be promoted as being ‘stylish‘ or ‘popular‘ but as soon as these girls and women get it done, they get instantly labelled by the society as ‘sluts‘. No matter how innocent they are when they have done it, at the end of the day is that meant to be ‘glamorous‘.