After I wrote a post about Club Libby Lu last April, many readers chimed in with horrified stories about the place, but several people emailed me saying that I was too harsh, that what I had described was not the Club Libby Lu they had heard about and I shouldn't criticize a place if I had never been to it. Several of my students did actually walk through the place and came back to report that it looked like an attempt to indoctrinate girls early with the idea that they needed to spend all kinds of money on cosmetics. After all, how can the multi-million-dollar cosmetic industry survive unless we convince girls at a very early age that they need make-overs to look pretty?
Then last month, Kindergarten Friend offered her services as a spy when her young daughter was invited to a party at Club Libby Lu. Here is her report:
We walked in and were instantly ushered into the back of the store. There the girls were given a 'menu' of looks they could turn into. [The five choices were: Rocker, Priceless Princess, Tween Idol, Super Star, and Royal Heiress. ]
Three of the girls wanted to be rock stars, and two wanted to be princesses. The other mothers were oohing and aahing over the pictures and couldn't wait to see the results. The children were taken into a back room and emerged with their costumes on. The princesses were adorable. They wore rainbow colored dresses with wings on the back. Then my daughter, one of the "rock stars," came out of the room. She was wearing black silk pants with silver sequins around the waist. The top was worn diagonally, over one shoulder and bare on the other, edged in silver sequins. I realized quickly what a mistake I had made, and then decided to make this a learning experience.
What surprised me the most was how the other mothers were excited at seeing their sweet young ones dressed as whores. After pasting a semi-smile on my face, I excused myself while the girls got their make-overs.
I wandered around the mall, trying to be interested in all the merchandise I was seeing. I wandered downstairs. I wandered upstairs. When I looked over the railing at the LIBBY LU place, my mouth opened in disbelief.
There, in the window of the "club" were the girls. Even from my high perch, I could see the make-up on the little whor-; whoops, I mean girls. I immediately rushed down for a little damage control.
When I got to the club, I was just in time to see the girls dance to a rap song. There they were; glitter on their faces and hair, fake hair with curls and pink strands clipped in their hair. Their faces were covered in make-up. They had eye shadow, mascara, lipstick and blush with a sheen of glitter to finish off the look. They were carefully following the steps that the teenage girl pimps were doing.
[How old were the girls at this party? Six. That’s right, these were girls just finishing kindergarten.]
In summary, your students were right on the mark. I will not allow my daughter to attend any more Libby Lu parties. I thought you might be interested in how the place works, so you can despise it more than you had already.