Pouting takes a whole new level on Facebook!

I have been watching Facebook closely over the last couple of weeks, always looking for inspiration for a new blog or article. My home page is always filled with random updates, some are a little too much information and some you cannot help but chuckle at. However, there were a few in particular that caught my attention.

I noticed a lot of updates and photo uploads relating to ‘Pout Princess’ a photography competition that seems to be taking over the lives of teenage girls in the area of Lanarkshire. Looking at some of the pictures made me cringe, photos of what appeared to be girls aged 18/19 in revealing clothes posing and ‘pouting’ like they had just stepped out of a ‘for him’ magazine – the only difference was they at least had some clothes on. As I looked through some of the contestants Facebook pages it came to my surprise that some of these girls were only 12 and 13. So, I did some investigating.

I spoke to Ms Elaine Dempsey, founder of the POUT Princess Photography competition. Ms Dempsey has had a wedding photography company, Premier Photography, in Hamilton for 20 years and is looking to expand her business into the glamour photography industry. “We thought the best way to get people involved and get our name out there was to run a competition, so we came up with Pout Princess.”

‘Pout Princess’ is a competition run in Lanarkshire for girls aged between 12 and 16 who are intProxy-Connection: keep-alive
Cache-Control: max-age=0

ested in the glamour modelling industry, similar to the modelling we see by Jordan aka Katie Price. The girls go along to the studios in Hamilton where there photos are taken by an experienced photographer. The photographs are then posted on social media sites such as Facebook and Bebo where other members of the public can vote for whom they think has the best ‘look’, is most photogenic, has the best features or simply, whom they find most attractive. The girl with the most votes in the end is awarded a free photo shoot and becomes the face of the new advertising campaign for ‘Pout Photography’.

Ms Dempsey aims to establish a respectable photography service for aspiring Glamour models whom she will photograph and help to establish a professional looking portfolio (a book made up of 6-8 of the models best photographs) and hopes that this competition will help to raise her new companies profile. “It has been a fabulous experience for us running the Pout Princess competition as we have met some amazing girls.”

One of the parents of the aspiring Glamour Models, Danielle Boyle, had posted her 13 year old child’s pictures on her Facebook page stating how proud she was of her ‘beautiful’ daughter. Mrs Boyle said that her daughter had a fantastic time on the shoot and Danielle is now  in the final five of the competition, “Danielle has always wanted to model, we saw this as an opportunity for her to break into the industry, if this is something your child is passionate about you cannot hold them back! And you cannot deny that she looks beautiful in the pictures!” Danielle added “it feels great to be in the final, I have never won anything so this feels like a big achievement.” With comments ranging from how beautiful her eyes are to how much she looks like her mother when she was younger, Danielle said that every compliment gives her a confidence boost and she is so glad she took part.

I also spoke to mother of eight year old child model, Michaela McMullan. Michaela has had many professional modeling and acting jobs including modeling for Kitten Kids Wear, Next, and also appearing on television show ‘Nina and the Neurons’. At age eight, Michaela is determined that she will be an international model by the age of 14. I asked Ms McMullan what she thought of such competitions – “I just do not agree with them. My daughter is eight and already has a mind of her own, however even at age 16 I would never allow her to participate in any such competition.” Michaela’s modeling agent, Ms Millar added “There is a big difference between the work Michaela does and the work that these girls do. It is a completely different industry. In the photoshoots Michaela does she is encouraged to be natural and child like, as are all the models under the age of 14. They are told never to wear make-up and not to style their hair. In these competitions it is different. They try to make 12 and 13 year old girls look like 20 year old women, caked in fake tan and make up, it is just all wrong and more often than not, they are damaging the child’s career as a model rather than helping them.”


5 Responses

  1. I think that if the child wants to do it, let them, but I don’t think it’s right for “pushy parents” to “force” their kids to live out what was once maybe their own dream… you can’t really tell people how to parent though.

    Great blog Lyndsay, it seems you got some good practice at obtaining quotes too.

  2. Thanks George! Yes, in fact obtaining my quotes inspired another blog topic! That the use of facebook is making aspiring journalists lazier! Ha! I got all of those quotes from the comfort of my own home, thanks to facebook! … James was definitely right when he spoke about how Facebook and Twitter can influence your stories!

  3. Why do children want to grow up so fast these days? When I was young, which wasn’t long ago, I loved being immature, babyish and not having the pressure of independence made life so much easier! I thought I was Peter Pan – I frequently told my mum I would never grow up. I can’t believe children are not allowed to be children anymore. At 12 I was drawing beards on models in magazines, not aspiring to be them!
    I suppose that children do have different dreams, and like George says if they want to do this, then let them. But it makes me sad to think that Katie Price is acting as a role model for this generation. “I do believe in fairies, I do, I do!” x

    Julia x

  4. What an eye opening blog Lyndsey. I would’ve had no idea that such glamorisation is being pushed onto young children. These girls are still vulnerable and are wrongly being allowed to have a taste of work in a controversial career with great stereotyping. I feel that the organiser should have second thoughts on who her target audience is and where she posts the photographs especially when Facebook is available to all and the photographs are available to all to see. Often such photographs may get into the wrong hands.

    Great blog!

  5. This is a great blog, with a really interesting, controversial topic. It seems terrible that children are being drawn into starting a career in glamour modelling. If people want to go into that area of modelling, there is nothing wrong with that, but surely it should be a decision made when they are mature enough to understand exactly what they are doing. Children should be able to have a proper childhood, rather than feeling the pressure to pout their way through life.

    Great to see some social networking journalism 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: