A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that the articles and ads (there are plenty of 'em!) posted on this site are typical of the standard, mainstream print teen magazine content: boys, beauty, fashion, and celebrities. The comments on the seemingly unregulated message boards and some "expert" advice do sometimes cross the line of sexual topics and are not suitable for younger teens. There are also games, quizzes, and a prom section.
What's it about?
Even though the print version of ELLEgirl has folded, teen girls still have a place to get their information about boys, beauty, fashion, and celebrities: ELLEGIRL.COM. The site offers features such as articles and advice columns in addition to interactive elements including boards, quizzes, and special interest clubs.
Is it any good?
While some articles do champion positive living and solid advice for teen girls ("How to Deal With Step-Siblings and Parents" and the "Top 10 Reasons it's Cool to Be Single on Valentine's Day"), for the most part, the site offers a lot of fluff content about celebs. And the advice column by Dr. Boy (aka actor Jamie Kennedy) provides sub-par advice that's silly at its best and unethical at its worst.
ELLEgirl.com isn't shy about its advertising; expect to click through multiple ads to read anything. Teens 13 and older can register (with a valid email address and a date of birth) to be able to comment on articles, post on message boards, and enter contests. But be aware: Topics on the seemingly unregulated boards run the gamut from seeking advice on hair styles to losing one's virginity and questions about "really fat thighs" to ineffective masturbation. Article comments are sometimes affirming, other times a bit ranty, but not really offensive or inappropriate.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the pros and cons of teen magazine advice and advertising. Do all teen girls need to wear makeup or buy certain products to look beautiful? Families can also read the posts on the message boards and the Q&A columns together and discuss whether the advice is good or bad -- and why.
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