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This Revolutionary Magazine Is Written Entirely by Preteen Girls & It’s Awesome

bright lite


There’s a new magazine breaking down gender stereotypes for preteen and teen girls. Meet Bright Lite. It is an independent quarterly magazine run entirely by and for preteen girls. It’s one of the only magazines like this out there for that demographic, especially one that isn’t just about lipgloss and boy bands.

So, how did it start? It was created by photographer Christa Renee and writer/illustrator Ami Komai. Both are moms of young daughters who saw that their kids didn’t have a place to relate to–and clearly, they wanted to change this, because it’s 2016. Renee explained this to Babble:

“After my daughter, Wes was battling low self-esteem, I realized that there wasn’t a community out there for girls her age. I really wanted to fill that void. I wanted to give Wes the validation that she wasn’t weird or different from other girls. I think 10 is such a special age, and I want to support her journey.

We knew what we wanted to see and nobody else was going to do it for us. There’s definitely been a learning curve and lots of trial and error but we’re doing it together, with all the girls, for all the girls. It’s definitely not been easy and some days, I think we are insane — trying to do this with just the two of us. But when I see the girls and their faces when their work is published, it makes everything worth it.”

Naturally, the board is made up only of girls and women–and the magazine relies on submissions from readers and girls within Renee and Komai’s community–although they’re hoping to expand it, which Renee commented on:

“My hope is to make this bigger than a magazine, but a community. Not just for my daughter, but for all girls everywhere. These girls have so much to say, we want to support them and make sure they know they’re amazing and their work is important.”

So far, the issues have been themed. Some of the themes include animals, museums, and most recently, outer space. Each includes poetry, stories, art, interviews, and more. This sounds absolutely wonderful–and I’m really sad that this didn’t exist when I was growing up, because I was totally in need of it at that age. I suppose it’s also why I began reading magazines like BUST by the time I was 13. Naturally, I couldn’t always relate to the adult-themed content. With Bright Litegirls 18 and under can submit content either online or by mail.

Komai explained what the magazine’s aesthetic is like–and how she wants it to empower girls:

“We want it to not only feel like a conversation between two friends, but to look like what an inside of a preteen girl’s head might look like.”

All the opinions I formed about myself, good and bad, I formed as a preteen girl. remember growing up and thinking there was no role models who looked like me, or anything representing my experience. This made me feel like I was in this bubble; feeling like nothing I did mattered. I want to change that, not only for my daughter, but for all girls. I want to try to represent all girls in a way that’s genuine, inclusive, and meaningful … No two girls are exactly alike, nor should they be. They’re all perfect just as they are.”

Renee added:

“We’re creating a world in which girls don’t have to fight for their voice to be heard, and no one questions whether they’re equal or not.”

Honestly, even though I’m definitely not a preteen anymore, I want to check it out.

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The opinions expressed here are the personal views of the author. Comments are moderated, so use your inside voices, keep your hands to yourself, and no, we're not interested in herbal supplements.

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