The Doctrine of Sex in Teen Magazines, Part 1

Is this thing on? Welcome to the Model Me Girl Open Mic, where I’ll be dishing out random rants, commentary and topics that are on my heart and mind—hence, open mic.

Today’s open mic will be the first in a series titled: The Doctrine of Sex in Teen Magazines.

Doctrine: a teaching; rule or principle based on beliefs, ideas, theories or policies that is taught as truth.

A recent war has been waged by girls against ‘Teen Vogue’. Quite a few girls want to see realism—girls who look like them versus digitally altered “perfection”. ‘Teen Vogue’ is not the first magazine to come under fire by its targeted audience. I’m certain it won’t be the last, either. We know all those images of unattainable—or if only you can afford it—beauty are depressing and damaging to some girls’ self-esteem.

There’s something deeper that should be considered beyond the images portrayed in the typical teen magazine. I get clothes. I get beauty and style tips. Maybe it’s me, but I take issue with hypersexualized teen magazines. Under 18, they are still children, right? If I had a teen daughter, I wouldn’t want her reading much of the advice that comes across those pages or posts. Digital. Traditional. It doesn’t matter.

I am amazed at the level of filth targeted to girls in teen magazines. Does a 13-year-old really need to be focusing on the right way to kiss? Does a 15-year-old need tips on losing her virginity? These are some of the “tips for girls”—or so they are branded.

Gutter. That’s what I call it. Yet gutter sales. That’s why so much of it is created.

The Doctrine of Sex

Once a girl’s self-esteem and self-image have been broken down, it’s easy to indoctrinate her to attempt to build herself up through sexualization. It’s a feeble and reckless attempt that appears to work on the surface. She looks happy, but is dying inside. Many fail to see that the sexualization actually tears down her value of self even more. And the merry-go-round goes round and round.

Each teen magazine has a doctrine. The majority of them rely heavily upon the doctrine of sex. Yes, there are some wholesome, affirming teen magazines out there. Thank goodness! But they don’t grow to the notoriety of the vulgar kind. I believe that’s rooted in the good girl, bad girl syndrome.

No thanks to the world wide web, the amount of vulgar teen magazines have increased by ten fold. Yes, be concerned about the teen magazines that break down your little princess’ self-value with depressing beauty shots. But do not turn a blind eye to the ones that deliver girls into the cold hands of a sex machine with racy columns and advice.

Let’s confront the Doctrine of Sex in Teen Magazines, and tear it down piece by piece. I’d like to know what you think.


How can we help teen girls develop and maintain a positive self-image when teen magazines are allowed to spoonfeed them doses of degradation and sexualization every day?

© 2012