Wedgie Jeans – wtf?

Who’d have thought that despite being absurdly named ‘Wedgie Fit jeans‘, these things would fly off the shelves? As is usually the case when it comes to fads and trends, I’d been blissfully unaware of their existence until recently.

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Last year, Levi’s came out with a pair of high-waisted jeans designed to make your butt look  rounder (priorities) by practically squishing your stomach while simultaneously giving you a wedgie. Women who’ve tried on a pair have confessed that the material, 100% cotton, was stiff and inflexible, they couldn’t bend or sit in it, but they loved the way it made their derriere resemble the peach emoji.

Some of the more critical comments read like this:

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So we’ve reached that stage where we now want our pants to give us wedgies?

Another item dedicated to feeding yet another insecurity that women have developed and are willing to spend lots of money to get rid of (no kidding, the jeans start at $88). Add that to the list of false eyelashes and nails, hair extensions, vagina tightening cream and whatever the heck this is.

This isn’t about policing what people wear; you can run around naked for all I care. This is about the subliminal messages that accompany societal and fashion norms and why they’re so different for men and women. Why do women have the sole privilege of being painfully uncomfortable in high heels? Why do our jeans have pockets that are too small to fit our keys in, let alone our wallets? Why is makeup primarily marketed to women? Why are men usually covered up, relatively speaking, be it at the beach or on the tennis court? Why is male frontal nudity in films as rare as female nudity is common? And so on.

“To live in a culture in which women are routinely naked where men aren’t is to learn inequality in little ways all day long. So even if we agree that sexual imagery is in fact a language, it is clearly one that is already heavily edited to protect men’s sexual–and hence social–confidence while undermining that of women.”
― Naomi Wolf, The Beauty Myth

We’re relentlessly bombarded with images that convey the message that a woman’s primary value lies in her appearance. It’s hardly any wonder then that we clamour around in desperation as we get older, trying everything to retain our youthful beauty aka our self-worth.

Don’t get me wrong – dressing up and feeling good is indeed fun, I’m all for it. Attaching your self-worth to the validation you receive for your appearance, however, is a drag.

There are far too many women, including impressionable adolescents, who spend far too much time not feeling good in their own skin because of a hollow culture that we’ve created. And there are far too many messages telling women that they’re beautiful the way they are and that they deserve to feel confident and worthy: why are we even discussing something that should go without saying? And when will we get around to discussing things that actually matter?

And so, in the meantime, while the men run companies and countries, make the big decisions and earn the big bucks – all while managing not to obsess over how their bottoms look – we women can continue strutting around in wedgie jeans.


(cover photo credit: pixabay)

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