Shoshanna Keats-Jaskoll, a mother of five living in Israel, and actresses Amy Schumer and Blake Lively all have something in common: They’re outraged by the alarming differences between Girls’ Life and Boys' Life magazines.
Keats-Jaskoll posted side-by-side comparisons of the two publications to Facebook on September 1.
“Your cover has a lovely young lady with a full face of makeup and you invite your readers to ‘steal her secrets,” Keats-Jaskoll wrote in an open letter to Girls’ Life that has since gone viral. “The Boys’ Life cover has in bold letters EXPLORE YOUR FUTURE surrounded by all kinds of awesome gear for different professions — doctor, explorer, pilot, chemist, engineer, etc. subheading — HERE’S HOW TO BE WHAT YOU WANT TO BE.”
She continued: “Could there be two more divergent messages?”
Schumer was equally appalled. On September 20, the Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo author Instagrammed the same photo Keats-Jaskoll shared earlier this month, with the caption: “No.” One hour later, Lively echoed the sentiment: “Wow. @amyschumer I second that emotion. Ladies, lets not let this happen anymore.” Then Katie Holmes got in on regramming action, writing, @blakelively @amyschumer #thisneedstochange.”
Indeed, headlines on the front cover of Girls’ Life include: “Your dream hair,” “Wake up pretty,” “100+ ways to SLAY on the first day,” “The new denim checklist” and “How to have fun, make friends and get all A’s.”
Karen Bokran, publisher and founding editor of Girls’ Life, defended the magazine in an interview with Refinery29 on September 2. “Are we more than lip gloss and clothes? Of course,” she said. “It’s OK to like lip gloss or be interested in fashion… I don’t know how [the problem] became either you like lip gloss and clothes or you like being an astronaut.”
Girls’ Life and Boys' Life are not affiliated with one another.
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