Siblings Fed Up With Only Short-Shorts Options For Girls Start Their Own Line

"We want girls to feel inspired, confident, and ready for anything when they put on our clothes."

Stroll down a girls' clothing aisle in any store and you'll see short-shorts, body-hugging T-shirts with tight cap sleeves, and tiny bikinis. Walk around the boys' section and you'll find much looser, longer fits. The clothes are cut to mimic popular clothing options for adults — sending a harmful message about male and female bodies to kids. 

"While boys' clothes are constructed for comfort and utility, girls' clothes tend to be designed to emphasize and minimize their shape," Rachel Simmons, author of The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls with Courage and Confidencesaid in a press release. "Fitted leggings, fitted tees, and shorty-shorts are the norm. Only offering those options sends girls the message that their bodies are, and should be, on full display at all times – and that looking slim is more important than having freedom of movement. That can lead some girls to feel self-conscious, especially as they enter the tween years." 

Sisters Sharon Burns Choksi and Laura Burns struggled first-hand to find clothes their daughters felt comfortable and happy in. 

"My daughter Maya was never comfortable wearing the tighter, shorter girls' shorts. She was an active girl who loved climbing trees and playing in the mud, and she wanted clothes that moved with her. And my niece Grace, who is two years older, just wanted clothes that were comfortable to wear and not restricting," Choksi told A Plus. "My sister Laura and I would both spent countless hours each summer searching for shorts that fit our girls' styles, and we wondered why there weren't better options." 

Fed up with the limiting options available to their daughters, Choksi and Burns teamed up with their brother David Burns to launch Girls Will Be, a clothing line dedicated to empowering girls through "in-the-middle" fit shorts and stereotype-busting graphic tees. 



Girls Will Be

The siblings did extensive research before launching and found that girls' shirts are one to three inches slimmer than boys across brands. Shorts can be four to eight inches shorter for girls than boys' clothing in the same size. 

The cut discrepancies could make sense if boys are bigger than girls, but research shows this isn't true. Girls start puberty first and, as a result, can often be taller than boys between the ages of 8 and 13

Unsurprisingly, many other parents shared Choksi's struggle to find empowering clothes for their daughters and Girls Will Be's "in-the-middle" fit have been a huge hit. Their signature "not-so-short" shorts have been praised for their longer inseam which gives girls "more room to move, without going as far as the baggy, past-the-knees styles in the boys department." Oh, and they have useable, large pockets, just like boys' clothes. 

Their stereotype-busting graphic T-shirts have also been very popular. Burns, a graphic designer who works on everything creative for Girls Will Be, designs graphic tees that reflect the variety of girls' interests, from dinosaurs and space, to kittens and butterflies.

Girls Will Be
Girls Will Be

"We want girls to feel inspired, confident, and ready for anything when they put on our clothes. We want them to never think something is only for boys. We want them to focus on being kids – not on how their clothes fit," Choksi said. "Those might sound like big goals for a clothing line, but when you think about it, clothes are one of the biggest ways kids express themselves. It's a way for them to tell the world a little bit about who they are and what they like. And, unfortunately, the clothes at most stores try to place limits on girls instead of encouraging them to be themselves." 

Girls struggle with their body image even at a young age. Studies show more than half of girls as young as 6 to 8 think their ideal body is thinner than their current size. Forty-two percent of girls in first to third grade want to be thinner and 81 percent of 10-year-olds are afraid of becoming fat. Those are scary statistics that can only be helped by giving kids support and nurturing positive self-image

"The work being done by small brands to give girls more body-positive options is absolutely critical to changing the relationship girls have with their bodies." Simmons said. "After all, girls face these issues every single day when they get dressed."

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