A French fashion label has attracted strong criticism for producing lingerie for girls as young as four.
The news comes amidst increasing concern about the sexualisation of children in the UK, and follows the release of a Government backed report into the issue.
Jours Après Lunes, which means Days after Moons, has come under fire for its “loungerie” clothes, a combination of lingerie and lounge wear.
The label’s range is aimed at girls between the ages of four and twelve. Its website includes one picture of a young girl reclining on a chair wearing just underwear and a cropped top.
Another picture shows a young girl sitting on what appears to be a dressing table whilst wearing just her underwear.
Dhani Mau, writing on the fashion website fashionista.com, said “What’s disturbing about Jours Après Lunes is not just the fact that it’s lingerie for people who probably shouldn’t be old enough to even know what lingerie is, but the photographs on their website.”
Marilisa Racco, the author of a book on lingerie, said: “It’s cute when a little girl dresses up in her mom’s clothing and jewelry and high heels. These pictures are not cute.”
She added: “A pearl-encrusted triangle bra on a little girl does not sit well with me.”
And Paul Miller, associate professor of psychology at Arizona State University in Phoenix, warned that such marketing sexualizes young girls.
He said: “This kind of marketing does sexualise young girls, it does serve as a model that inspires very young girls to think that minimizing what they wear and revealing as much of their body as possible is appropriate, and ‘fashionable’ and ‘cool,’ and that this is the way that they should think of themselves”.
But Sophie Morin, the designer behind Jour Après Lunes, defended the clothes saying that they “have no vulgar connotation: they are totally opaque, nothing transparent. The style is inspired by children’s fashion, with spots, bows, etc.”
In June Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed a report into the sexualisation and commercialisation of the nation’s children.
The Letting Children be Children report said that parents should be supported as they attempt to combat child sexualisation.
The report also said that age restrictions should be put on music videos to protect children.