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Douchebag Decree: Jours Après Lunes, Lingerie for Girls

"ye olde douchebag decree" in blue letters with a light blue hand-drawn douchebag in the background, and "BITCH HEREBY DECLARES THE FOLLOWING PERSON A TOTAL DOUCHEBAG" in small letters in red underneath.

I lived in France for a short time in my carefree younger days, and I have fond memories of their refreshing attitudes about sex (and also soft cheeses): Ne t'inquietes pas! C'est naturel! and so on. However, call it the American prude in me, but I am thoroughly creeped out by this new line of lingerie for girls ages three months and up by the French company Jours Après Lunes. Making out on a park bench or not shaving your armpits or what have you is one thing, but putting a bra on a four-year old is something else entirely.

a young white woman and a white toddler sit on a couch wearing lingerie
It's OK—I'm reading Kafka.

Now I'll be the first to admit that some of the lingerie and "loungerie" (what they call their line of baby products) on the site is pretty cute. Black and white striped shorts and tank tops? So French and fetching. And it's not as if I'm arguing that young girls and women should cover themselves up and never run around in their underwear either—lounging around in your undies is what being a kid (and a 29-year-old who lives alone) is all about. There's a big difference though, between a five-year old girl in Wonder Woman underoos and a five-year old girl wearing expensive lace lingerie, styled to look like a sexually mature adult. Check out these thumbnails from the "filles" collection to see what I mean (larger versions of the images can be found here):

nine thumbnail images of young white girls in underwear and tank tops, styled with adult hair and makeup and pearls
Who? Lolita? Sorry, never heard of her.

Considering the extensive research available on the consequences of sexualizing young girls, lingerie peddlers (and swimsuit peddlers—I'm looking at you, Abercrombie Kids) should know better. Of course, France has a reputation—most recently for the 10-year old Thylane Blondeau controversy—for hiring young girls as models, but keep in mind that this line of lingerie is being marketed to young girls (or rather, their parents) in general, not just to those who pose for Vogue.

young white girl in underwear, shot from behind
Erving Goffman is turning over in his grave right now.

The sectioning off of body parts, the suggestive poses, the pearls and updos—these photos and this line of "loungerie" go right past cute kidswear and straight into objectification territory. Selling sexy underwear to young girls (and babies!) sends a male-gaze-directed message that I, for one, think kids should get to wait a while before they receive (or in a perfect world, wait their entire lives without receiving). Nominate me for a Prude Decree if you must, Jours Après Lunes, but I'm decreeing you a douchebag.

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Comments

24 comments have been made. Post a comment.

loungerie

WTF!!!!!!!!!

Totally agree. This is just

Totally agree. This is just insane and gross. They are too young!

While this is apalling, I

While this is apalling, I really, REALLY think the decree should have gone to this school district (this story's been all over the news).

http://www.bust.com/blog/2011/08/18/lawsuit-missouri-school-district-fai...

So many douchebags...

...so little time.

____________
Kelsey Wallace, contributor

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Seriously? What parent would

Seriously? What parent would buy from a place that sexualizes children the same age as their child?

For even more on that

Feministing gives their two cents on that AWFUL matter today http://feministing.com/2011/08/18/i-am-not-wrong-the-worst-story-youll-r...

You know, I've seen a couple

You know, I've seen a couple stories on this today, and I have to say: The clothes themselves? Adorable. Little girls like to feel like big girls and if they want to wear a training bra under their clothes? No big deal. The underwear isn't that "sexy" for the most part, either. (The little lace trim on the plain purple briefs is cute and pretty. Not cut inappropriately or overly revealing.)

That having been said, it's the big, tousled hair and the come hither stares that bother me. Ropes of hair and smoky eyes? Not good.

This exactly. Most kids

This exactly. Most kids undies and training bras and so forth are pretty cute, but when when they're advertised like adult clothing, it looses the kid appeal and gets to be something else entirely.

I mean, there's nothing inherently sexy about ruffles. In fact, some may argue they are the opposite of sexy: I had an ex who hated my ruffly lingerie because he felt that the ruffles were too childlike. But the lace and ruffles and all that jazz could go either way - it's the context of the ads that changes it, I think. I could see a totally adorable kids set based on old school comic book characters - bottoms, chemises and training bras - that would be cute, kid's "lingerie," but the basic premise of them pushes away from sexy and bounds into playful. Maybe (being super generous here) the lace etc makes the ad companies (or whomever makes these decisions) want to display like the grown up counterpart? It's like the mirror image of the whole grown up women dressing up as little girls to be sexy (like in every single Halloween costume feminist blog post ever). Something more inherently playful kind of naturally brings up images of mudpies and bike races, and less sultry bedroom scenes.

O! another example? Babies in petticoats.

It makes sense...

I guess that since we lose our sexual relevance (is there any other kind for women?) once we turn 17, it pays to get an early start in assessing ones worth and potential, starting at age three. Why bother even pretending that girls and women serve any other function than sexual objects? Embrace it. Internalize it. Pass it on to your daughters.

The only reason they can sell this stuff is people buy it. Stop buying it, watching it, making a market for it. It will go away. Tell your daughter no when she asks for lingerie at age seven and maybe even ask why she thinks its necessary. My guess is, it isn't the kids asking for this stuff.

Great call on the douchebag award, btw.

Sha-Bitch Extraordinaire!

"Why bother even pretending

"Why bother even pretending that girls and women serve any other function than sexual objects? Embrace it. Internalize it. Pass it on to your daughters."

Wow, really?
You're a sick fuck.

I guess in your twisted fantasy world, what are known as females are simply walking vaginas! Words can't even describe how deplorable and disgusting your character is.

Well...

Given the rest of the comment, I'm pretty sure Sha was being sarcastic, Anon!

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I would like to go back in

I would like to go back in time 90 seconds and choose to not look at those photos.

Loungerie

The more perceptive children that wear this shit will inevitably forge a mental link between the attention they receive and the clothing they are wearing. Children of any age should not be exposed to this sad fact, let alone infants and toddlers. This is the last mind-set a child should possess at the onset of sexual maturity. Maury Povich's show is the only thing that will benefit from the manipulative, the self-conscious, and the outright histrionic women these trends can create.

This is a new standard of bad parenting and it demonstrates that more and more people are unfit to procreate. Sadly, it is not a new standard for bad business decisions.

"Days after moons"?

I'm disgusted by the brand, but just puzzled by its name. Unless "lunes" has another definition of which I'm not aware, it seems to translate pretty directly to "days after moons." If it were "avant"/"before," I would think it was a nod to menstruation, ie. "Guess what: These girls haven't gone through puberty yet!", which would be right in line with the child sexualization at play. As it is, I wonder if they're nodding at the belief that the full moon makes people act wildly, which would be just as gross. Undies for little girls when they're feeling wild (read: sexy)?

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I say "Déplacé"

In French we say "déplacé" for something that is not quite right or inappropriate. We live in a society that fetishizes youth where sixteen is perfect age to be (physically for one year, mentally for your whole life) and that is sad. Glamorized photos of children are never tasteful.

And I thought American Apparel was bad enough

Guess they have competetion now. This was indeed worth this week's "Douchebag Decree."

Children need underwear and not lingerie.

it is disturbing that she states that the line was born out of a gap in the underwear market for children???? Surely at 4-12yrs old a child does not need underwear options. Just clean basic cotton tanks and briefs. How, why and when was there a need for children to be in anything more risque or more sophisticated than that is beyond me? Who are they trying to attract or even better why does a 4-12...yr old need fancy underwear to feel good. Finally the whole concept of underwear for children designed in mind of it being worn as lounge wear is a completely flawed. When did children in this day and age with all the dangers out there, lounge about in underwear anyway?

I am perturbed by this growing fad to sexualise minors and sit back and excuse it. I do not care if it is models used in the imagery, it is the fact that this is being marketed to a consumer type that should not be wearing lingerie in the first place, let alone lounging about in it!

Whether the brand is sold in USA is not the point, it should not be marketed even in Paris.

She goes on to mention the fact that the art direction involved the kids playing as kids do with toys. Dare I say that Sophie Morin has no idea what the word 'Lolita' now stands for? It is that very mix of child meets sexy woman. Now mix the children dressed up like mini Bardots with the toys and it is 'Lolita'.

Yes girls dress up in their Mothers clothes and heels and it is adorable because they are playing. They don't then wear those heels out or lounge about publicly.

To compare this highly inappropriate line with children wearing bathing suits is utter nonsense. They must swim, thus a need for swim wear, even with that it is the parents responsibility to make sure it is less 'Jours apres lunes' and more child appropriate.

So back to the issue of children and lingerie/loungerie... do they need it? Can they surely not lounge about in 4-12yr old appropriate wear? I was 4-12yr once in my life, I never needed to lounge about in my underwear let alone in lingerie.

Can we please please please let children be children? They will have all the time in the world to wear lingerie or loungerie when they are older and it is appropriate.

"Yes girls dress up in their

"Yes girls dress up in their Mothers clothes and heels and it is adorable because they are playing. They don't then wear those heels out or lounge about publicly."

But they wouldn't be wearing their underwear publicly either.

Ok wait- this was not a shoot

Ok wait- this was not a shoot done by the company, it was a stylized vogue shoot (they have it on gawker or jezebel, either one). I don't find anything wrong with the underwear, just the way the girls are portrayed in the shoot.

I'm not sure who shot the

I'm not sure who shot the photos originally, but I did get them from the Jours Apres Lunes website (http://www.jours-apres-lunes.com/fille.html) and they are being used by the company as advertising.

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I always wonder where are

I always wonder where are these models parents? Who would sign off on this, or did they even know that this was what they were signing off on? And, I also wonder what parent buys they're young children expensive anything? When I was a child I ruined multiple outfits playing outside and rolling down hills, so my mother never bought me anything that was over $40 unless she knew I'd be out of the thing before I hit the door. Plus, most of my undies came from the dollar store and Walmart because, again, I they'd probably be ripped, torn, and dirty by the time the wash rolled around--sliding on wet linoleum and hardwood was awesome.

hot hot hot ps im 12

hot hot hot

ps im 12

i think they are hot

i think they are hot especially the 10 year old one.
i think this because i am an 11 year old guy no jokes

HISTORY FOR YOU?

Technically, human serve no other use than to reproduce, although both genders should be treated the same as though they are not different. Hence gender based laws. Because some girls nowadays are used to getting everything they want, and when they go to school or work, and they don't get something they want... BOOM! Instant sexism. By that I mean over the years as woman have gained the rights they deserved, some woman have gotten caught up in it and actually try to make women's rights better then men's rights. I'm not saying women shouldn't get anymore rights, because there still are multiple workplaces that are still extremely “man-related”. If you want to state it like that, girls and guys are both walking sex toys. Although way back in midevil Europe, the Christian chuch almost banned reproduction itself. Only one position was allowed, and I'm thinking we all know what that one is. Probably 100 years later, the Christian church actually promoted prostitution, so much that the church had prostitutes that lived inside the house of god. Historians believe they promoted this because of the extremely high death tolls of the Black Death, and the phase where the church almost banned reproduction completely. (That was your daily history lesson...) Although I don't see the problem with this so called 'inappropriate' underwear, as it is almost identical to normal underwear, I still am against the idea of sexualizing young girls.