I have to confess my tardiness in getting this post up. I had it on my calendar to post two weeks ago, but life just kept getting in the way. The girls started Kindergarten, and I was trying to meet deadlines for my freelance projects and I got lost trying to balance everything. It turns out time was on my side because while I was working on this in my head, someone posted this:
This side by side comparison just confirms that most magazines targeting young girls focus on how a girl can make herself pretty on the outside by changing her hair and makeup, instead of focusing on what she already has that makes her beautiful. My young girls are beautiful just the way they are. I want them to know there is more to life than waking up pretty. Quick fact: six in 10 girls will stop doing what they love, because they feel bad about their looks.” Where do you think that message is coming from?
That post really lit a flame under me to share my review of KAZOO magazine. And here’s why:
GOES BEYOND PINK
KAZOO magazine is so girl forward. It opens up a world for girls where they are invited and encouraged to think of things bigger than fluffy pink dresses and how to behave with sweetness. There is nothing wrong with pink things and fluffiness, but they aren’t for every girl. My girls love digging in the dirt, building things with sticks and talking like a pirate. They are loud and question EVERYTHING. I have yet to find a magazine that recognizes these behaviors as universal- not just #forboys.
KAZOO’s Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Erin Bried, selected KAZOO for the title because, “The beauty of the kazoo is that everybody already has what it takes to play one. Just breathe, and its loud, happy sound comes automatically. I want girls to feel the same way about their own voice- they already have everything it takes to use it.”
A NEW STANDARD FOR CONTENT
The girls in the stories and articles show bravery, empathy and courage. No one is talking about their hair, or their flaws or how to change any part of them to make someone else happy. If my girls can read about young women taking risks to succeed at their own passions, then that becomes the standard by which my girls measure themselves. Are they compassionate? Are they following their dreams? This encourages my girls to think about what their dreams really are.
Every story is either developed or inspired by successful female artists, scientists, chefs, athletes, or writers at the top of their professions. The founder herself has worked as an editor for major publications such as Conde Nast, SELF magazine, Glamour, and has appeared on national TV and radio shows. Erin Bried is also the mother of two girls who inspire her to bring our girls age appropriate, powerful tools to create, dream, build and explore.
In the middle of the magazine is a feelings road map. It exclaims EVERYBODY has big emotions. This so normalizes human emotions vs. marginalizing girls into categories of “moody” and “dramatic.” This particular segment offers solutions for dealing with those big emotions. This is very different than the message most of us get to “just smile” and show the world our best, even when we aren’t feeling our best. Starting in childhood, girls are especially vulnerable to receiving the message their feelings don’t matter because they are “just overreacting.” They learn to stuff down their emotions very early. This can carry over into adolescence where girls are nearly three times as likely to suffer from depression as compared to boys. Helping our young girls honor their own emotions will have long term positive benefits.
PROMOTES DEEP THINKING
Inside the covers of KAZOO magazine you will find recipes for seed bombs, creative writing projects, science exploration, ways to create beauty (not BE beauty) and facts about the world around us. My girls loved testing out the “Will It Float experiment,” building their own boats out of twigs and getting an art lesson from Artist Mickalene Thomas. Our whole family enjoyed reading about the Perseid meteor shower and we made sure to schedule time outside to view it. My kids have a deep interest in art and science and KAZOO encourages them to see things in a new way and engage with the world outside of doll houses and dress up.
There is so much more to share about this magazine. I honestly love it so much that I kept it from my kids until I got to read it first. I spent three days flipping through the covers and hugging it tight. You truly have to hold it in your hands and flip through its pages to get the full magical effect. It is the perfect alternative to other girl magazines on the market today. The subscription cost is $50.00 per year for four publications. I know that sounds steep for a magazine subscription, but hear me out: 1. You are getting high quality content written by some of the most successful women in their trade. 2. You are getting a well-crafted publication and it is the only one of its kind. 3. Until we start demanding this new standard from the media in targeting our daughters, we can expect to pay more in the way of their self-esteem.
Thank you Erin Bried and the entire team at KAZOO for raising the bar and delivering such a phenomenal magazine!
The Whatever Mom is a twin mom learning to let go of perfection. She shares her real life struggles with parenting through her blog and contributes her time and talents as a writer to Hudson Valley Parent and Masshole Mommy. When she isn’t writing you can find her chugging coffee, folding laundry and not judging other parents. Don’t forget to subscribe via email so you never miss a blog post again! You can also find her work featured on Mamapedia and The Novice Mommy.