Does Pink Stink?

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Just curious really but what do people think about the 'Pink Stinks' campaign?

"Parents are being urged to boycott shops selling pink toys and gifts by a campaign group.
Pinkstinks says the "pinkification" of little girls causes them to choose less challenging careers and pass up opportunities as they grow up." -

Personally I'm not exactly pro it.  I believe there's a place for pink.  Thing Two adores pink, but she also like yellow, lilac, blue etc.  She lives in a pink room, pink walls, pink carpet, pink bedding, pink blind.  Her favourite colours are Orange and pink.  I often let her choose her own things and sometimes she loves pink and other times she doesn't.  For instance she recently chose two dresses one being super pink with brown dots and the other being turquoise, brown, red and quite a bit different...she could have chosen two pink ones she could have chosen two none pink ones...the choice was hers.  I think that is important.... 'choice'.  Many mums who have a lil girl like pink clothes and pink bedding and to an extent sometimes pink buggies, as my first was Thing One when I had Thing Two I loved being able to buy pink because even though there's nothing stopping you, pink isn't generally a colour you buy for boys or one boys would often choose.   Yet girls can happily wear pale blues and pinks.

Many girls naturally gravitate towards pink fluffy girly things and in all honesty, what is the harm, as in really?  Pink is a fun, happy and often innocent colour.  Is there an issue with girls being girly?  Does it make them into doormats? Does it encourage them to fulfil a pretty and submissive gender role?  No.  Thing Two loves pink....and cars...and heavy metal (& dead things). She's diverse.

To a child a colour is just that, a colour.  Any symbolism and connotations attached to it are purely manufactured by adult minds and then impressed upon children.

Saying that as a kid i hated pink, red was my fave colour.

The thing that irks me however is unnecessary pinking of things.  If you look in say the Argos catalogue now you will see a baby gym...then a pink one.  A push-along walker...........and a pink one.  A bouncy chair............and a pink one.  THIS in my opinion is unnecessary.  I mean seriously the usual ones are bright, cheerful, unisex and great.  I think it's unnecessary to foist pink on things that don't need it but there's nothing wrong with having specific pink stuff. There isn't however a blue walker for instance, so it would seem the manufacturers deem the child friendly (unisex) one for boys?  There isn't a need to replicate it in pink with the only purpose of it being to market it towards girls who quite frankly are far too young to care.

 So what if a little girl adores fairies and princesses...... it's childhood. Why shouldn't she?  Why should we dictate what our children can and can't and even should and shouldn't like when it comes to something like colour? What's wrong with just letting them decide?  So what if a little girl likes pink and dolls and fairy wings...and likewise so what if she prefers a firemen costume and bob the builder toys.

On the other extreme you get people like The Grandad who is appalled by the notion of boys and pink.  He has some unfathomable issue with Thing One hugging or kissing him as he's apparently too old for that.  Thing One is seven, The Grandad has been trying to get Thing One to shake his hand instead for several years.  He also had issues with The Toddler having a penchant for dressing up in Thing Two's high heeled play shoes, tutu's and pink roller skates.  However, it's interesting to note that he's never had an issue with Thing Two liking cars.

I think sometimes parents try too hard to conform to stereotypes and likewise some try too hard to navigate their children away from them.  Is either right?  Aren't both..technically a form of dictatorship and the parent pressing their beliefs on their child?  Where's the room for child choice and organic growth?  Is the sexism in the pink or actually within the anti-pink?

Labels, stereotypes and connotations are adult concepts.  An item, object or colour only has as much meaning as you invest into it.  A cross to a christian is symbolic, a cross to an atheist might just be another shape.  Pink is just that...a colour....a child knows not about any significance it has in later life and shaping a person, it is the adults around the child that has these ideas and imprints them upon children.   Is there anything that wrong with a girl wanting to be girly?  Should we encourage them all to wear dungers and wellies and spit through their teeth just to uncomform to archetypal femininity?

Let them wear pink i say (or blue, or yellow or purple or orange) A child is a sum of many parts, a colour alone will not make them (or break them)

I can't personally discriminate on colour alone.  I didn't let Thing Two have kiddie makeup sets until last christmas when she was 5 and asked for some.  We have rules as in she can only wear it once every so often and she can only wear it inside. I didn't let my son have a toy gun because I don't agree with what it is and what it's primary use is and we needed him to understand this, now he's seven he has a spud gun and a water gun.  Myself and my brothers played with them as children and we're not psycopaths or should I say i'm not, I can't vouch for them.  Surely depriving them of the above is inadvertantly infusing them with more negativity and issues. However, I cannot and will not deny a colour because of what it 'may' represent to 'some' people.

Unnecessary pinking.  We have the v-tech walker that we've had since Thing One and i find it ludicrous that you can buy the original...and a pink one.  Why? The first one wasn't all blue or anything!?  Thing One had a chunky elc garage and then Thing Two loved it and now The Toddler loves it.  They love it because it's a garage, it's green and red and orange.....i can't see how it being pink will improve it in any way other then stating 'this' is for girls, it's more about anti-boys then pro-girls which is absurd.

I didn't 'like' pink until my late teens and then it was only to confuse people because i was a goth and even whilst rebelling from convention i had to rebel within my none conformity,  or something.

Whilst Thing Two gravitates towards pinks and lilacs Thing One and The Toddler also naturally gravitate towards cars and dinosaurs.  All three of them have had access to cars, garages, kitchens, dolls, buggies, tools.  We encourage them to independently choose what they wish to play with.  Gender identity isn't always a negative thing.  An equal amount of caution should be applied to degenderising children.  Why shouldn't a boy be a boy and what exactly is wrong with a female being feminine, if they so choose?

Why is being a 'girl' so insulting?!" Exactly, I mean after all shouldn't we celebrate our femininity if we so choose?  Has it really come to a time were it's politically incorrect to be a girl?

Girls naturally like to emanate woman, and boys men.  Isn't this natural?  I'm sure there's been experiments with children in the past where they put them in rooms with boy/girl toys and despite liking them all girls do gravitate to girl toys and boys to boys, why is this wrong? is it really that it's just not 'preferable' for the parent?

Child of our Time experiment showing how all the girls preferred the taste of 'princess pop' even though it was exactly the same as 'rocket pop'

I especially hate it when we get people who try and take this to another level and make a political and social statement of their child and their parenting like dressing boys specifically in pinks and purples etc and buying them 'girls' toys not because the boy might actually ask for them but to prove a point and to exercise their rabid feminism when infact isn't this stripping the little boys of their gender identity too?  Shouldn't we let children gravitate naturally towards their chosen colours and toys? Why does it suddenly have to be a statement and about a wider issue?  Thing One hates pink but loves dolls prams (granted he 'drives' them lol) Thing Two loves pink and also adores cars / monster trucks / well as dolls and ponies. 
Live and let live.  Childhood is far too short as it is, why not just enjoy it with them.

There really are much more pressing and potentially damaging issues then colour.

Children make no association with colour and their place in society, so maybe the problem is grown, cultivated and spread by adults making an issue where actually...there probably isn't one.
Let them make their own minds up and just let them 'be'.

Children learn by replication.  Some claim toy kitchens etc are sexist and encouraging children from an early age to conform to gender stereotyping.  Are they really though?  Or is it merely enabling a child to fulfil their need to replicate what they see in every day life and to identify with their parents? The Toddler simply adores his toy Dyson and as soon as The Husband gets the real one out, The Toddler rushes to get his and hoovers with him. 

I think there's a fine balance between over thinking our children's childhood and under thinking it both of which are guilty of the disintegration of childhood itself and the magic and innocence associated with it.


  1. This is a much more eloquent discussion of the subject than I managed!


  3. Taste and decency and adventure and happiness and Love can be any colour you like.


I love receiving comments so thank you for taking the time to leave one. Don't worry if your comment doesn't show up immediately, in order to avoid that pesky captcha I've activated comment moderation instead so as soon as i'm online i'll publish your comment :)

If you like the blog feel free to link it on your page.

All content by L Seddon / MamaUndone | (© Copyright 2015) Design by Studio Mommy (© Copyright 2015)