Girls and Men: The Gender Age Difference


Just had to stop by and drop a whole lot of judgment on Forever 21 for contributing to the widespread gender age difference phenomenon. Unfamiliar with the language I’m speaking? Helpful hint: Aside from the fact that women are expected to shave off all of their natural body hair and weigh practically nothing in order to look and feel more like children, another fad comes and goes where women are referred to as “girls” well into their twenties and early thirties, while men become “men” as early as seventeen. Certainly there’s supposed to be a safe haven in “guys” which is meant to be a closer match to “girls” age-wise, but many men refer to themselves as guys for their whole lives, whereas I’ve never known a woman over the age of forty who still considers herself a girl.

Nice try, Aeropostale.

After stumbling across Forever 21’s website and seeing this, I decided to check out a few more popular clothing outfitters. Aeropostale uses the “guys and girls” trick, Hot Topic tries to get around the whole issue by using symbols instead of words, and Hollister decided to call women “Bettys,” which just sounds like a name out of the fifties to me.



Only two out of six outfitters I checked are using “men” and “women” to categorize their clothing: Abercrombie & Fitch and Urban Outfitters.

I know most of these stores are trying to cater to a younger demographic, but if they are going to call their female shoppers “girls,” it would be in better taste to call their male shoppers “boys.” Because youth is not feminine; it’s human.


2 responses to “Girls and Men: The Gender Age Difference

  1. I just have to point out that Forever 21 is mainly a store for women, including juniors and into the twenties/thirties range. Their website is mostly all clothing for that demographic, and their main tabs include things such as apparel, accessories, shoes, and beauty, which are all for women. The “girls” tab is just what that– for younger girls, around 12 and under. If you had actually looked on the site you would have seen that. I don’t disagree with what you are saying in general, but I felt it necessary to point out your error.

    • Wow, thank you for pointing that out! That does make a lot of sense. I will look into it more. Judgment rescinded!

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