Teen Mag Roundup

Today we’re flipping through the pages of Teen Vogue, Seventeen, and J-14’s May issues to highlight what trends, music, stars, and fashion young Millennials are soaking up.


Coverboy: Justin Bieber has ousted Lady Gaga to claim the crown for having the biggest fan base on Twitter. The interview touches on online bullying from the star’s perspective, but doesn’t touch on the semi-meltdown moments the star has been having as of late. The issue also covers Bieber’s “favorite artists of the moment”: Carly Rae Jepsen, Tori Kelly, Big Sean, The Wanted, and Madison Beer.

Trends To Watch: High-fashion baseball hats: Featured here are the bright printed caps by Kate Spade’s lower-priced line Saturday. Feminine takes on traditionally male accessories continue the gender-blending fashion trend. Crop tops: No doubt the continued influence of ‘90s fashion, though these are a more polished take on the skimpy top the kids of the ‘90s and ‘00s wore. Judging by festival fashions, baring skin is officially back for young Gen Y girls.

Musician to Watch: Elle King, the daughter of actor Rob Schneider and model London King, is set to release her first full-length album. She describes her sound as “a hot mess of Southern soul, with a little bit of rock ‘n’ roll, country, and R&B.” Mash-up music genres continue to gain traction and Millennials are growing up with a much less defined understanding of the concept of genre since country, rock, soul, hip-hop and pop all merge together.

Term to Know: M.O.D: Model Off Duty, coined by Alexander Wang to describe the casual stylish look of slouchy tees and leather jackets that models don while running between shoots and shows. The mag gives a rundown of H&M's upcoming “New Icon” line, which aims to emulate the look. The rise of street style blogs and photographers has made the street into a runway, for models and the young consumers who want to emulate them.



Covergirl: Anna Sophia Robb (who plays Carrie on TV’s The Carrie Diaries) talks about her decision to star in the show rather than go to college. Her interview emphasizes trusting herself, telling readers not to worry about being judged and that it’s okay not to fit in.

App to Know: Snappette: This fashion app pairs with brands and retailers to allow the user to browse Pinterest-style pictures of styles in stores near them, along with exclusive deals and offers. Snappette boasts Emma Roberts as their spokesperson, and was called “the future way to shop” by Fast Company.

Stat to Note: 64% of Seventeen readers say they are over Justin Bieber in their “Into It or Over It” poll. The celebrity cycle moves quickly for young consumers, and even while gracing the cover of Teen Vogue, stars today can be quickly ousted as fan favorites.

Signs of the Times: Topics covered in the pages include a profile of a school shooting survivor, and an article asking “is everyone faking it online?” that covers the “catfish” phenomena. The shooting survivor profile includes advice on what readers should do if they are worried about a potentially violent classmate and the 16-year-old girl profiled notes that she now looks for escape routes wherever she is. Millennials and post-Millennials continue to live in anxiety-ridden times that foster their risk-averse natures.



Coverboys: One Direction, who also graced the covers of several other teen gossip mags this month are all over the issue, from a spread on their charitable trip to Africa to removable inserts printed with “Keep Calm and Love Harry/Liam/Niall/Luis/Zayn.” The boy-band resurgence is clearly still going strong.

Musician to Watch: Austin Mahone is a Justin Bieber in the making. After gaining fame on YouTube for singing a Bieber cover as well as his songs “11:11” and Somethin,” Mahone is now going on tour with Taylor Swift and has released his album Junior Year.

Stat to Note: One of the “Hot Topics” covered in the mag is whether parents should issue cell phone contracts, a question inspired by a mother and son who made news after she made him sign an 18 point contract before giving him a phone. Unsurprisingly, 67% of J-14 readers “think its crazy to have to sign a contract for phone privileges,” but the inclusion of the topic reveals that teens and parents are still negotiating technology norms and behaviors. 

Sign of the Times: Like Seventeen, J-14 has a spread on internet romance and “catfishing,” creating fake personas online to start a relationship with other people. MTV’s Catfish star Nev Schulman is featured in both pieces. This mag asks if internet romances are safe and gives tips to readers on how to spot a hoax. The statement, “[m]aking friends and flirting with guys over Twitter, Facebook, and other social sites can feel less awkward than breaking the ice in person,” might have older generation readers cringing, but the reality is that Millennials are doing as much socializing online as they are off and are sometimes more comfortable talking to someone with a “screen between them,” so to speak.

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