It’s one thing to hear that the most common cosmetic surgery procedure among adults is breast augmentation. It’s another to see a designer use the craze for fuller breasts to target a pre-pubescent crowd. And by pre-pubescent, I mean second grade.
Abercrombie & Fitch released a push-up bikini bra as part of their Abercrombie Kids line which targets 7-14 year-old girls. The bra’s padded cups and halter straps promise to lift and emphasize what little boobs these girls have before puberty hits.
If you’re disgusted by this marketing ploy, you’re not alone. Parent blog, Babble, writes:
“The push up bra is, effectively, a sex tool, designed to push the breasts up and out, putting them front and center where they’re more accessible to the eye (and everything else). How is this okay for a second-grader? Playing at sexy is an inevitable and important part of growing up. But there’s a difference between exploring these ideas on your own and having them sold to you in a children’s catalog. Right now, somewhere in the world, a girl is shopping at Abercrombie kids and getting the message that her breasts might need a little help.”
Girls have their whole adult and late teenage lives to worry about their breasts not being “big enough,” or to wish they could get reduction surgery if their boobs are “too big.” Why give them a complex before its time?
And if push-up bras are meant to draw attention to breasts and create cleavage which entices men to have sex, what exactly is Abercrombie promoting here?
This is just as alarming as the mom who injected her 8 year-old with Botox, reported this week on Jezebel.
It’s bad enough that as a culture we’re obsessed with beauty so much so that we undergo dangerous practices as adults. But to encourage our kids to adapt that warped way of thinking before they even hit middle school? That’s a new low.
The one bikini I was allowed to wear as a kid had pink polka dots, bows and flowers. My stomach poked out hilariously between the top and bottom and I’m pretty certain no thought of breasts or cleavage was put into the design.
And frankly, I liked it that way.
-Jessica C. Andrews