How young is too young?

Thylane Blondeau has quite a portfolio to show. She has been on the cover of French Vogue which equals an accolade in the fashion industry. She also starred in ad campaigns for lines of major brands, and regularly works with the top fashion photographers including Dani Brubaker.

Now that might sound like years and years of experience in the fashion industry, but actually Thylane Blondeau is only 13 years old!

At the age of only ten years she got on the cover of Vogue – a decision that provoked huge discussions as the young girl was shown in sometimes disturbing poses and looks, made up and styled just like a grown up. It seems ridiculous to me that in the world of fashion little girls are portrayed as though they were adults and grown women are infantilized.

The fashion world surely is a tough place and only those who play the game will be successful. However, I’m not saying that a fashion shoot is an inappropriate place to be for a young girl, but it needs to be supervised appropriately. I am just wondering who was supervising Thylane when she shot „implied nude“ pictures (see here) or poses on a bed with bare legs. Is it really necessary for such a young girl to be depicted hooking her thumb into the jeans and slinging her hip out or staring seductively into the camera (see here)?

It’s just kind of creepy how the fashion industry always looks for younger and thinner girls because these days a model can’t be young and thin enough. Youth equals beauty, that’s what we are taught by the fashion industry. Every model has an expiration date and when that day comes she can easily be replaced by a younger model.

As for Thylane Blondeau, she is called the new Kate Moss at the age of only 13 – thus she is even one year younger than Moss at her discovery at JFK Airport. And again she graces the cover of a French magazine called Jalouse. Let’s just hope that Thylane is tough enough to prove herself in this hard industry and that she is able to make her own decisions about what she wants to do in her life and what she doesn’t.

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4 thoughts on “How young is too young?

  1. Great article! I read the whole thing; I agree this needs to be discussed. The girl is definitely a model prodigy–which I never thought of existing, but she definitely knows what she is doing in front of a camera, which is amazing and slightly disturbing. She is a little kid still, I agree and I think the fashion industry may have forgotten that. If she is going to model I don’t think she should be dressed or posing so suggestively. She has a lot of talent, but she is also not old enough to make her own decisions completely, even if they may dress her and treat her as such. She is still one of the most amazing child models I have seen.

    http://kelformity.blogspot.com/

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