I feel like a pattern is emerging when it comes to the young pop stars in today’s media.
When Disney teen stars reach a certain age, usually eighteen, they feel the need to wear fewer clothes, dance provocatively on stage and pout their lips to be seen as an adult in the music industry. The realisation is that child stars no longer enjoy their youth because they feel pressured to grow up. This is becoming a common problem in the media at the moment, young stars are changing overnight to stay relevant and keep their stars burning bright.
Miley Cyrus was a sweet, fresh faced star of the Disney channel hit Hannah Montana when she first started out but these days with her new pixie haircut and choice of clothing (or lack of) she appears to have blossomed into a confident and attractive woman. But there are plenty of people that don’t agree with her recent choices, especially when it comes to her wardrobe. She may be twenty years old but Cyrus started dressing inappropriately back in 2010 when she performed at the Much Music Video Awards wearing a daring skimpy black leotard and hot pants for her performance. She received a lot of criticism for her bold choice and many said that she was acting too old for her age.
She was branded a role model for young girls when the Hannah Montana hype was in full swing but parents of fans are complaining that their kids still look up to Miley even though she has left Disney behind her and her recent behaviour, clothes and music is inappropriate. On the other hand, the public has to reckon with these pop stars because eventually they do grow up and they want to be their own people without being scrutinised by the media for everything they say and do.
Miley Cyrus isn’t the only pop star to make this transition through the years; Kylie Minogue is one of the first examples of the sweet to sassy change. When Kylie first started out in the 80’s she kept it simple with her perm and vivid clothing but through the years she has changed her hair, her music style and her fashion sense.
At 45, Kylie Minogue is strutting around in revealing leather stage outfits and Madonna is doing the same at the age of 54. I guess these two pop stars don’t understand the term growing old gracefully because they still parade around in stage outfits that can’t even be classed as clothing. Many pop stars wear stage outfits, some tasteful and some not but the problem isn’t the adult pop stars dressing provocatively, it’s the teen pop stars acting older than they actually are.
Selena Gomez is another pop star that I think is growing up too fast, coming from the Disney channel just like Miley Cyrus; Selena has always kept a squeaky clean image and dressed appropriately for her age until recently. I am not saying there is anything wrong with dressing to look sexy at the age of twenty but it is different for these pop stars. They are not regular people and growing up under the spotlight often does more harm than good. In a matter of months, the baby faced Disney star has gone from sweet to sexy by doing mature photo shoots in magazines, wearing revealing clothes and taking a risqué role in the dark film Spring Breakers.
I think the main problem is the Disney channel. They create these personas with their teen stars. First, they find an attractive and young teenager with the potential to make them money. They endorse the star by giving them their own album and their own TV show and they eventually build an army of fans and instantly become a role model. That’s all nice for a while until the teen star has to grow up, they are constantly criticised on the choices they make in this transition which causes pressure for the star and bad media attention for the Disney channel.
There are many pop stars that have made a smooth transition from child to adult in the music industry, a perfect example being Taylor Swift. She started out when she was just sixteen years old and is now nearly twenty four; she has grown up with the world watching and done this without any scandals or inappropriate outfits. I might be wrong but is it a coincidence that stars with no connection to the Disney channel have a smoother transition than the ones who are? Demi Lovato is another Disney teen star that has had her problems whilst growing up in the public eye including a trip to rehab but luckily she has a good head on her shoulders and has made it out the other side unscathed with her reputation still in tack.
In general children are growing up faster these days but I think that it is harder for the young teen stars, especially for those on the Disney channel. The media pressurises them to leave their persona behind and sex it up but Disney wants them to stay just the way they are. I blame Disney channel for overexposing these young children too soon before they have a chance to have a childhood, it’s sad really. If pop stars and teen stars are growing up too quickly now I dread to think about what it will be like for the future generation of new talent hoping to follow in their footsteps.