Should Boys Wear Pink Sparkles?

pink sparkles jumper

Should Boys Wear Pink Sparkles?

I’m not sure what happened to my son in the summer, I think he must have stood in a bag of fertiliser or something, because he has outgrown much of his wardrobe and made a serious dent in my bank balance.

After a morning where he got very upset that at least five of his jumpers were too small, making their way towards crop tops rather than items of clothing meant to keep you warm. I promised him a trip to our local supermarket where he could choose two jumpers of his choice.

Sometimes I am not really sure what goes through children’s clothes designer’s minds. But the selection in the boy’s section was decidedly drab and dark. My son looked at them uninspired and I can’t say I blamed him. I didn’t want to go to a more expensive store that may have had a better selection, I was just wanted a couple of low priced jumpers I didn’t mind getting a bit of paint on at pre-school, but that didn’t mean they had to be boring.

Then we walked passed the girl’s section and his eyes lit up. A grey jumper with a pink and maroon sparkly, sequined owl on it called out to him and he gasped I love it Mummy.

For a moment I faltered. Could I, should I, buy my son girl’s clothes? Ridiculous really now in hindsight, if it had been the other way around I doubt I would have thought twice about it. But my main concern was if other children laughed at him for his choice, I didn’t want that for him.

But… I decided to give him the choice. I said – do you know that it’s a girl’s jumper? To which he replied yes. I said how would you feel if someone thought you were silly for wearing a girl’s jumper and he said to me – I would think they were silly. Sage words from a nearly 4 year old.

That sentence cristalised my decision. As I thought about it, I bet most children won’t even notice or care other than perhaps to say ooh that’s pretty and it sparkles. If my son wants to wear a sparkly jumper who am I to say no and put upon him silly gender stereotypes and rules? I could see the appeal, it was a much nicer jumper than the mud coloured ones hanging in the boy’s section.  So I chucked it in the trolley and said ok then. He was delighted and I smiled. And  in actual fact having seen him wear it a couple of times now, I don’t even think that it’s that girly.

There is just too much gender stereotype crap thrown at children from the marketing world. Just go in a children’s toy store and you will see it. Pink aisles with dollies for girls and blue aisles with trucks for boys. Never the two shall meet. But what if there was just lots of neutral aisles and children just choose what they loved in both pink and blue? Who says boys shouldn’t wear sparkly jumpers or even tutus if they want to for that matter? They’re just children playing, attracted by fun looking things. And trust me they all look the same after they’ve made mud pies in them. If I could give a children’s clothes designer a hint, think sparkly dinosaurs – I know some young boys and girls who would explode with excitement if they saw that.

A Cornish Mum

Domestic Momster

28 thoughts on “Should Boys Wear Pink Sparkles?

  1. Well said. Kids should be able to wear what they want and play with what they want (obviously to a point but you get my meaning), but stereotypes are thrust upon everyone. Just look how long it was before women wore trousers!

    Unfortunately, kids are cruel, with a lot of their thoughts and actions coming from hearing and watching their parents. If all parents had the attitude you did then maybe stereotypes would not be such a big thing, and the companies would listen. However, most parents are too frightened to change for fear of recrimination against themselves as well as their children. Also many think stereotypically themselves and don’t want to change, or even see a problem with the pink/blue divide.

    It’s refreshing to hear about your experience and how you managed to push it aside, however, I fear it will only get more difficult as your little one grows older. But stick to your guns, as everything you impart on him now will help create his thoughts and options as an adult. That’s where the change really needs to begin.

    1. Thanks Carolyn, yes I feel it will get harder as my children get older too. I am so glad I got him this jumper and every time he wears it he is so pleased with it. I wonder if gender stereo types around children in particular will ever be broken, I hope that they are.

  2. Sparkly dinosaurs! That is the Holy Grail, isn’t it. Tabitha and Eloise often wear boys clothes, as its really hard to find girl stuff with dinosaurs, and tbh it doesn’t matter if it’s boys or girls. Boys stuff does tend to be really drab though, mud colour being quite prominent. Tabitha also has a love of Halloween style things, so boys hoodies with skulls on, another with bats one, Spider-Man, Avengers, Batman….she is very much into some astronaut pyjamas she saw in the boys section of H&M kids. She dislikes princesses, so her choices are often limited!

    Sadly it is different for a boy, and it shouldn’t be. I love that owl jumper! I don’t think it’s even that girly!

    1. No in hindsight I don’t think it’s that girly either. Sparkly dinosaurs would be so awesome wouldn’t it? And boys clothes are often so, so drab children should always be in bright colours in my opinion 🙂

  3. I have to say you made the right call. Though I personally wouldn’t have even explained it was a girls jumper, since none of its features made it a girls item. Had it been a Disney Princess dress, I may feel the need to explain. ????

    He loved it from the get go and he looks very smart in it.

    1. Do you know Rob, I wish I hadn’t said that to him now I think that was a real mistake and if I could go back I wouldn’t say anything at all and would say if you like it then you can have it. Live and learn I guess. I won’t next time.

  4. Fab post again Laura! To be honest I would not have guessed that it was a girls jumper that your son is wearing. I don’t look at it and think girly. If your son is happy with it then that is all that matters, I know the feeling of walking down the aisles in the supermarket and thinking the clothes are not appealing, both girls and boys! You made the right call 🙂

    Gemma xxx

    1. Thanks Gemma, no it isn’t that girly is it? And children’s clothes should be fun – there is plenty of time to be boring when they are in school.

  5. I found you from the momsters link. Anyway, I love that you posted this. I don’t think the sweater is that girly either. Regardless, all of us should wear what makes us happy and if other people don’t like it, they don’t need to be interacting with us. Your son seems wise beyond his years. Good job mama!

  6. Great post with such an important message. Since my son is only about 17 months, I have not experienced anything like this yet. However, I do plan and hope that I handle it just like you. =) Also, I love the look of your blog. This is the first time I have been on it and the layout and colors are excellent!

    1. Thank you Jen 🙂 you have it to come yet than and with toys too – I think children should be well children.
      Thanks for your lovely comments on my blog it was designed by Ellie Illustrates 🙂

  7. I think he looks great! You are right I have two boys and I often wonder what designers are thinking about, the choice seems to be boring or character clothing and not much else, especially on a budget. There definitely needs to be more gender neutrality in clothing and more exciting clothes for boys too. #positivelyposted

    1. Oh yes I didn’t mention character clothing but you’re right and my son is in to characters a bit but not that much – more dinosaurs really. Definitely needs to be more gender neutrality you rarely see pink in the boys section.

  8. I think he looks very handsome in his jumper! My youngest’s favourite colour was pink for ages and his favourite t shirt was pink…though it did have a dinosaur roaring on ha!
    Thanks for linking up to #Picknmix
    Stevie x x

  9. Kapow! Bam! “I would think they were silly.” I love his confident! Love it! & Yes, sparkly dinosaurs. Ethan and I did his birthday invitation with sparkly dinosaurs and it turned out that his favourite colours were green sparkly dinosaurs and pink sparkly dinosaurs. I love it. I think your boy looks so cute in that sparkly owl top. 🙂 x #PicknMix

  10. Such a great post and I couldn’t agree with you more! I have bought Zach a couple of things from the girls section because I liked them and they might as well be unisex items. Im sure children would prefer brightly coloured clothes than blue or pink! xx

  11. I love this sparkly jumper and think he looks cute in it! Lol thanks for sharing. I agree there is a lot of boy/girl stereotyping in todays society and I’m not a fan of stereotypes at all! Angela x

  12. I am in this huge stage of loving owls right now and I love his shirt! It’s so true that there are just too many stereotypes on clothes for boys and girls. My 4 year old girl wears everything superhero…even has her room decorated in superheroes and yesterday took a spiderman stuffed doll as her show and tell item. No one blinks an eye. But now if my son were busy carrying around a princess Sophia doll and wearing a pink princess sweatshirt why is that weird? There is just too much emphasis on gender. I say be who you want to be as long as you are happy and not hurting anyone else. I think your son looks handsome with that awesome owl shirt on! Love love love it! Thank you for sharing this with #momsterslink.

    1. Thank you so much Trista. Yes why is it no ok for boys to like girls things, but seems to be fine vice versa. I agree I think he looks fab in that jumper and I love him to bits for being who he wants to be 🙂

  13. Such a great post! Gender lines don’t need to be so distinct, and I really agree with you – there are so many great clothes for girls, but not so much for boys.

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