The “nepo baby” t-shirt that Hailey Bieber wore
(CNN) – A T-shirt with a striking slogan, painted at the right time, can become a lasting image in our cultural history.. In 2002, shortly after her public split from Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears stepped out wearing a baby blue T-shirt emblazoned with all caps “DUMP HIM,” a look that quickly became enshrined in the internet applause hall of fame (Etsy is littered with thousands of copycat jerseys more than two decades later).
paris hilton she was also long immortalized as a meme after using a Apparently incendiary black and white vest with the slogan “Stop being poor!” in 2005, in 2021, Hilton proved the image to be doctored, however, with the actual text reading “Stop being desperate!” Most recently, ahead of the release of her fifth studio album, “Crash,” musician Charli XCX preempted the negative reviews by wearing a pastel pink crop top that read “They Don’t Build Critics Statues.” Primarily a vehicle for daring responses to low key drama, the slogan t-shirt is a spokesperson for the wearersaying the quiet part out loud in a way that avoids direct responsibility.
On Friday, January 6, Hailey Bieber became the latest celebrity to try to harness the power of the screen-printed word. While walking through a parking lot in Los Angeles, Bieber was photographed wearing a white blouse emblazoned with the words “Nepo Baby“.
Slang for “nepotistic baby,” which means child of famous or well-related parentsthe phrase has been popping up on social media for the past year, used to highlight the myth of meritocracy and the unsurprising truth that wealth and family connections can generate. unfair advantages. Some celebrities, such as Lily Rose Depp, have been criticized for denying the advantage that nepotism can give an actor or performer who is starting her career, as she did in an interview with elle last year.
But the phrase spilled over after it became the subject of the December cover of New York magazine. The article, with the sarcastic caption “She has her mother’s eyes. And Agent” included a series of illustrated family trees “showcasing” celebrities with famous parents and relatives. It sent social media users into a tailspin, with some jumping to the defense of their favorite stars and others pointing out that nepotism is just one rung on a long ladder of individual privileges that many people benefit from, from color to from skin to gender, class and name. Just a few, and it shouldn’t be overemphasized. It also sparked a lot of regrettable responses from celebrities. “I am so sick of people blaming nepotism for why they are not rich, famous or successful”tweeted Kate Moss’ half-sister Lottie Moss. “Obviously it is” It’s not fair that people who come from famous families get an advantage because of that, but guess what? Life is not fair, if you put your mind to something you can achieve.
Bieber, who is the daughter of Stephen Baldwin, niece of Alec Baldwin and wife of Justin Bieber, appeared briefly in the New York piece. His choice to approach the controversy sartorially was risky, as designing any viral moment is when public opinion is so unpredictable. While some have praised Bieber for his sense of humor, many voices on social media have brandished her as “talentless” and lacking the necessary qualifications to fly the nepo baby flag everywhere. But does the act stand shoulder to shoulder with the cheeky, carefree energy that Spears and Hilton’s sarcastic tops radiate? Well, in just a few hours, more paparazzi shots revealed that Bieber had changed his shirt.