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5-Year-Old Boy with Pink Toenails: Is J.Crew's Ad Inappropriate?

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A new J.Crew ad is causing quite a brouhaha, but not over the clothes -- people are upset about a boy's painted pink toenails.

In an ad emailed to customers, J.Crew Creative Director Jenna Lyons appears with her 5-year-old son Beckett in a playful pose -- in which she has apparently just painted his toenails. Under a banner that says "quality time," Lyons is quoted, "Lucky for me, I ended up with a boy whose favorite color is pink."

Mothers expressed their strong feelings on "Today" ...

Momlogic wants to know: Is J.Crew's ad inappropriate? Do you think the ad blurs gender identity in a harmful way?

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24 comments so far | Post a comment now
Sharon April 13, 2011, 1:24 PM

It’s buffering right now at 2:11, but can I say how much I love the dad in the first part!? Good for him! Lucky kids.

CC April 13, 2011, 2:32 PM

Nobody would tell a little girl not to paint her toes! And if she wanted to dress like a boy, she’d just be considered a “Tomboy” and people would shrug it off. You shouldn’t force anything on kids - let them do what’s fun and what feels right to them. They may grow out of it… or maybe not. But why would you want to change them and make them unhappy?

My best friend’s little brother wanted his toes painted blue as a kid when he saw his sisters do it - and he turned out normal and well adjusted. I always wanted to be BatMAN at age 4 despite being a girl (and dressed like him for a year). Who cares - it’s NORMAL!

Jamie B April 13, 2011, 3:26 PM

What could be harmful about a mother and son spending quality time together? They’re laughing and having fun - enjoying some physical contact (which is SO important). Maybe they’re even learning about why we have toenails or something, I dunno.
Our culture needs to GET OVER our attachment to gender roles. So what if he wanted his toenails painted? Or is the only concern that it’s PINK polish? That would be even worse, if this is just about the color.

shannan April 13, 2011, 3:37 PM

This is ridiculous. I dont understand why you would want to push a child to be a girl if they are a boy. Or vica versa. That commercial is not about accepting someone that is being different its about trying to create controversy.

WhoCares? April 13, 2011, 4:03 PM

What a weenie!

Dasher April 13, 2011, 5:18 PM

You people are out of your minds. We have enough pressure in this world without making kids gay before they even know what the hell that means. Terrible ad and terrible responses.

emma April 13, 2011, 6:10 PM

Why would you do that to your child, you people need Jesus.

Christoph April 13, 2011, 8:43 PM

YOU CAN’T MAKE A CHILD GAY. When will you get that through your thick skulls. I thought we solved this years ago.

angela April 13, 2011, 9:43 PM

what the hell does jesus have to do with pink toenails really people!!!!

Dan April 13, 2011, 11:11 PM

What the hell is wrong with people? Big sisters dress little brothers up all the time. I have a picture of myself in a ballerina outfit when I was four. It doesn’t mean anything! It’s all for laughs, it’s all for fun, not about controversy, not about anything other than a parent spending time with a child.

MommyLisa April 14, 2011, 8:50 AM

Kids want to be like their parents/care-givers no matter the “gender role” they play. This is ridiculous to argue over. The kids saw his mom painting her nails and wanted to do that too - WHY NOT??? My daughter loves to play swords with Daddy…does that mean we are wrong? She loves Cars and Tinkerbelle…and she could CARE LESS what color, age, gender, anyone is because WE make it a non-issue.

Susan April 14, 2011, 10:31 AM

This add is not about “accepting a child that is different” and it is not about “blurring gender identity” either….this is ONLY about a mother and a son sharing quality time together. People making it about pink nail polish have their OWN issues to work out.

Tracey April 14, 2011, 11:51 AM

My son loves pink and girls things. He went to 4K this morning with his nails painted pink in solidarity! I’d rather he have pink toenails than watch wrestling or monster truck shows.

Ginger Correa April 14, 2011, 1:15 PM

It’s just polish, it comes off. If a little boy wants to paint his toenails so what. What do you say to him “No you can’t because people will say your gay”. People do have the freedom to do what they want.

Elizabeth  April 14, 2011, 3:10 PM

I think it is fine. No one tells the little girls who dress “tomboyish,” that there a lesbian. I think that who ever chastizes this little boy , needs to look at themselves. He is playing, he is happy, he’s also five, he’s not gay. Five year olds don’t know what that is. He is happy. Are you inwardly homophobic. What if your kid ended up gay, would you chastize him then?

Big Whoop! April 14, 2011, 6:29 PM

Who cares really? My son wanted his nails painted when he was like 3 and I did it and everything turned ou fine. He is a typical 12 yr old boy who is just starting to think girls are not yuck….

Meagan April 15, 2011, 12:19 PM

Why do people honestly think that letting him wear pink nail polish will “make him gay?” nobody is going to say “I like this color, so I am now going to be attracted to men!”

even if the child turns out to be gay this should not even be an issue

Karla April 15, 2011, 5:28 PM

“Why would you do that to your child, you people need Jesus.”
Lady, lighten up. It’s pink nail polish. Which one of the Ten Commandments does that break exactly? THOU SHALT NOT PAINT THY SON’S TOENAILS HOT PINK!!! Really?

Cat April 15, 2011, 6:18 PM

When I was child, the only time girls could wear pants to school was on snowy days, and we had to put on skirts as soon as we got there. Now are my friends and a wear slacks at least half the time and no one thinks anything of it.

Times change… and that’s okay.

Ms. Nurse  April 15, 2011, 7:37 PM

Kids are gender confused at a young age, until about 7. So parents are supposed to reinforce their gender roles. There are studies on growth and development about it. That’s why American is so confused and messed up in the head.

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