The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
I was scrolling through TikTok recently, and I came across a video that showcased the misogynistic tags in men’s clothing. A lot of the tags told the wearer to get a woman in their life to wash their shirt for them. Personally, I found this absolutely ridiculous. Men know how to wash their own clothes, or at least they should. Men’s clothing brands like these perpetuate sexism by enforcing gender roles.
Some of you reading may not think this is a big deal. However, it definitely is, as these stereotypes are harmful to everyone. With this ideology, a man who washes his own clothes would be perceived to be more feminine. A woman who does not take care of the laundry within her household would be considered more masculine. Furthermore, this type of dialogue completely erases non-binary people.
As we live in a society where women have begun working more, and there are stay-at-home fathers, it is completely ridiculous to assign laundry to one gender. It is different in every household, and it should really be no one else’s business who does the laundry as long as it gets done. Moreover, it should not be only assigned to the women of the household.
Another thing that clothing companies like these do is promote sexism to younger men. A lot of male children look up to other male figures. If the figure makes a clothing line with the tag, “women should do the laundry,” that child is absolutely going to be influenced to think that. However, it is a responsibility that every single adult has.
In addition to all of that, these clothing lines further imply that clothing is binary. It is so weird for someone to even imply that a shirt is strictly meant for one person or another. Clothes are literally clothes; it should not matter if it was designed for a male or female. Women could be the ones wearing these items of clothing without even noticing the sexist tags. So why on earth would you create a piece of clothing that creates a social divide? Your market could be vastly bigger if you catered to everyone regardless of their gender identity.
In conclusion, the idea of having tags that enforce the stereotype of women doing the laundry in this modern age is completely bewildering. Most grown men know how to take care of themselves, and it is just as harmful to them as it is to women. Men should be able to do the same things that women do because it is literally basic hygiene.
This type of rhetoric excludes people that do not fit in the binary as well. Furthermore, it teaches children to continue this type of behavior throughout their adult life. It could hinder young boys from actually learning to do their laundry because they think of it as a women’s job rather than personal responsibility. It can create internalized misogyny in young girls as well. I truly hope that these companies do better.