One Direction’s Adult Fanbase
London-based boy band and pop group One Direction is probably best known for it’s legion of screaming teenage and adolescent fans, but the group has another fanbase – more and more, adult women have been flocking to their concerts, taking up the running of popular One Direction blogs, and writing articles about the feminist appeal of the boy band.
The group, who reached pop star status with songs like “What Makes You Beautiful”, has faced some controversy – some critics feel that the songs promote low self-esteem to young girls, and paint a lack of confidence as a desirable trait in young women. However, the women who love One Direction feel that songs like “What Makes You Beautiful” carry a positive message for some girls. “It’s frustrating because the wonderful thing about What Makes You Beautiful is that a lot of us don’t know or think we’re beautiful.” says writer Clem Bastow for Daily Life. “Certainly from the age of about 13 to 27, despite looking like a perfectly reasonable young woman, far from knowing I was beautiful I was more or less convinced I looked like a goblin.” Bastow says that this is why so many adult women find appeal in the songs of the five young men – that and the boys’ ambiguous sexuality (something they have also faced criticism for, with critics calling the group “a little gay” despite many of the boys having girlfriends – one of them even dated Taylor Swift!) makes them seem like “safe” icons for both young women and adults alike.