This was originally going to be your everyday, run-of-the mill roundup of kid’s T-shirts I thought were cute or funny or cool enough for me to wish they were made in my size. As I browsed various online retailers to pick out my favorites, I tried to keep my choices gender neutral.
While looking through what Target had to offer in the graphic tees for tiny humans department, I found a few in their boys’ section that I thought would be a good fit. They had words and phrases like My Future Is Bright, Future Astronaut, and Smart & Strong across the chest. The shirts I picked were all by a favorite brand of mine that they carry, Cat & Jack.
But in perusing the girls’ section, I became a little irritated. Sure, they had a few T-shirts with the solar system on them or encouraging messages about being brave or working hard. But a lot of them were focused on being kind or nice or the importance of smiling. None of these sentiments were displayed in the boys’ section at all.
And the emojis. So. Many. Emojis.
It was frustrating to have found so many options that fit what I was looking for outside of the girls’ section. But I kept clicking through the pages of shirts to make sure I wasn’t missing something I wanted to include.
Then there they were:
The boys’ tees that I had earmarked for inclusion because of their simple designs and confident messages were all in the girls’ section too. And they were exactly the same shirts. They weren’t recut with a scoop neck or a high-low hem. The gray, navy, black, and white graphics were not switched out for neons and pastels, and there wasn’t a speck of glitter on them. There were no emojis.
They were the exact same, awesome shirts being marketed to both genders with words that mean the same things to the kids who will be wearing them, regardless of their gender.
This shouldn’t be that exciting, but it is. I wanted to let Target, and Cat & Jack, know that we see what they are doing, and it matters. We appreciate it and support it. Now that I think about it, I’m not too surprised. Cat & Jack has already made headlines for their Strong Like Mom shirts that flew off shelves recently. (My own local Target was completely sold out the first few times I tried to buy them for my own kids.)
So good on you, Target. Thanks for clothing that can empower our kids without feeling the need to separate them. Just one more reason to love you.
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