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Insta-stars & Fashion’s New Faces: Inside the Pages of This Month’s Teen Magazines

We dug inside the pages of Teen Vogue, Seventeen, and Nylon (so you don’t have to) to find the most interesting teen trends, fashions, rising stars, and more that young consumers are reading about this month. Here are TK things we learned:

1. New Faces of Fashion

This month’s Teen Vogue gave readers three covers, all featuring “fashion’s rising stars,” and all African American models. After the release of the issue, news swirled around the diversity displayed by the publication’s choices—which stand out in a fashion world where white models are still the “norm.” The young women, Aya Jones, Lineisy Montero, and Imaan Hammam, are being noted as ones to watch as the magazine has a knack for calling out talent on the rise. 

2. College Admissions in the Social Age

Ten years ago, teens applying to college didn’t have to worry about how their Facebook profile might impact their chances of getting into their dream school. But today, social media is a factor in college admissions, as evidenced by Seventeen’s tutorial on cleaning up social profiles to prepare for application time. A Kaplan Test Prep survey found that “one in six admissions officers has found something online that hurt an applicant’s chances of getting accepted.”

3. Insta-stars

The changing definition of fame means that it’s not just models, musicians, and Hollywood celebrities who get spotlighted on the pages of teen magazines. This month’s Teen Vogue was full of “Insta-stars,” from an A-list of the fashion influencers that readers should follow to a feature on Instagrammer and blogger Margaret Zhang. The 22-year-old behind fashion blog Shine By Three tells readers that, “you can use [blogging] as a vehicle to get where you want to be.”

4. @HotGirlsEatingPizza

It’s not just Instagram’s influencers who are appearing in teen mag spreads. Viral account @HotGirlsEatingPizza gets a prominent mention in Nylon’s pizza spread. The account is filled with pics of pretty ladies chowing down on slices, which 25-year-old founder Marta Freedman says projects an “IDGAF” attitude. You could interpret its popularity as part of the backlash against perfection, and extreme Hollywood diets. The spread also includes Insta account @PizzaTattoos, which celebrates ink devoted to everyone’s favorite pie.

5. Race & Reality

We’ve talked about Millennials and teens’ involvement in recent activism, much of spurred by events and tragedies rooted in race issues. As a generation that once thought of itself as “post-racial,” these events have been jarring. Seventeen devotes a section of their magazine to what they call “the hot topics of the moment,” interviewing real girls about how they feel about the state of race relations in America. Their responses? “Disheartened.” “Infuriated.” “Perplexed.” “Strained.”