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'Tween' lingerie walks Lolita tightrope


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no borderline - definitely sexualizing pre-teens.

8 ( +11 / -4 )

What sadder is that JT saw it fit to reprint this article here.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

The designers aren't wrong or perverted, they're just supplying what the customers demand. Seriously, at 11 or 12 girls start to develop, and some develop faster than others leading to jealousy, and all everyone wants at that age is to "grow up" and not be a "kid" anymore....well, at least American girls do because there is no "kawaii" culture here and having Mickey Mouse underwear past age 12 will not make you any friends in the locker room.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

It'll definitely fly in Japan, that's for sure. I think it's sad that girl's this young are being targeted, and even sadder if a parent buys for and allows the kid to wear them. I can understanding wanting a kid to look cute and giving them cute clothes to wear, but 'sexy' lingerie?? Do these parents want their kids' skivvies to be seen in the first place??

miyazawa3: "The days are closer... The men act like animals."

Not all of us, but sadly some. But the fact of the matter is it's SOCIETY that allows this kind of thing; and both men and women are making those decisions to allow it.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

It is wives Miyazawa.

Capitalism at its best is what this article is about.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

In a country where the sexy lingerie and adult goods are separated form the rest of the department store by a half-curtain and a sign (and some stores don't have any one of those!), and the sheer number of online stores, these will definitely sell. I even had many experiences to be right beside high school girls in uniforms choosing condoms.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

The vast vast majority of 7 year olds girls do not need a training bra. Among the very few that do, a significant number will have a hormonal condition that needs to be controlled by medication in order to avoid future complications (separate topic so no details).

When a girl starts to need a bra at around 11-12, there are plenty of perfectly acceptable, pretty but functional options available. Even in Japan and even in bigger sizes if necessary if she goes to an adult department. It is not only completely unnecessary to dress a young girl in sexy underwear, it can also be physically uncomfortable, even harmful if the fit, style and support is not right. Yes, some girls want to dress up all sexy from a young age. Some young kids want to drink alcohol and smoke too. Do we let them? No. Not responsible parents anyway. Because that is what being a parent is all about - guiding them into an adulthood where they are happy and confident about themselves and mature enough to understand and handle the choices they make.

There is absolutely no need to go from Kitty chan to Lady Marmalade with no step in between. And bras for a 4 year old???! Come on! Petit Bateau and Skiny have it right. Abercombie have it way wrong.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Cant imagine these kind of considerations EVER even being contemplated in Japan.

At least outside Japan many THANKFULLY realize this is serious issue.

Functionaly appropriate garments for young girls = fine sexualizing you girls = WRONG

Pretty simple & shud be obvious, to those that its not, best to watch out for them

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Do they sell sexy underwear for little boys too? Tommy Train puffing on cigs with a beer in his hand?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Elvensilvan: The condom thing is unfortunate, but I'm of the mind that I'd rather see or hear about them buying some protection than read/hear about an increase in unwanted pregnancies (and discarded babies) and/or increase in disease because they're NOT buying them.

As for the clothing, we're in agreement, but it's less a problem of how poorly the clothes are separated from other clothes as how 'Lolita' is not even really considered a negative word here, but in fact embraced in a number of respects. This has been discussed at length, but this Lolita fascination is part of the reason why so many J-pop girl bands don't do well overseas -- people are uncomfortable seeing 13 year olds in skimpy panties pillow fighting and talking about 'heavy rotation', etc.

I hope that both in Japan and abroad people put the breaks on this 'trend' very quickly -- it's grotesque even as a concept.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

This is much to do about nothing, wear what ever you want, it is freedom of choice, don't want to wear undies, cool by me, this is about free countries right?? We are not talking about sexually repressed Saudi Arabia? Iran? Somalia? etc..right??

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Seems like normal life in Tokyo. See it every day.

You see pre-teen underwear every day?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Interesting how posters above dwell on how terrible things are in Japan, while the companies marketing sexy undies to "tweens" mentioned in the article are all...non-Japanese.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The article says: "According to a U.S. study published by the journal Pediatrics in 2010, 15% of American girls now have breasts by age seven, with similar trends observed in Europe and Australia."

This is factually incorrect. They have what are called "breast buds" by age 7 - NOT breasts. Totally different thing. Breast buds indicate the onset of puberty. - which IS occuring earlier and earlier due to factors as yet unproven. A breast is a fully formed organ indicating the end of puberty. Breast buds may or may not require support depending on a number of things related to each individual case.

I am all for pretty, functional underwear for young girls. I remember the hideous concoctions that were our only options in the early 80s. But these girls have a full 20 years or so ahead of them of fending off unwanted attention. Why start them off so young with push ups, red satin and leopard prints? That is just sick. Childhood goes by so fast. Let them enjoy it while they can.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Let's all read before posting.

See byline, "Paris", not Tokyo.

"At the International Lingerie Fair taking place in Paris this week, a dozen firms had models aimed at teens and pre-teens—also known as “Tweens”—including girls as young as nine."

See companies mentioned,

Petit Bateau Skiny, an Austrian firm last summer the French brand Jours Apres Lunes caused a stir with a line aimed at four- to 12-year-olds

More from the article-

"A US research team last year found that nearly a third of clothes targeted at pre-teen American girls had “sexualizing characteristics”—such as the use of slinky red or black materials or leopard-skin prints, or cuts that emphasized the buttocks or breast area."

"American pre-teen store Abercrombie Kids has repeatedly been accused of overstepping the line—in 2002 for selling thong underwear with “wink wink” and “eye candy” printed on the front, and last year for a kid’s push-up bra."

and we still have posters railing about underwear in Japan.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The glory is that you just can't win. Whether its padding or no padding, lace or no lace, cuts or no cuts, short of putting them in a burqua, somebody is going to find them sexy anyway. The panic never ends, and so the Chicken Littles of the world will always have something to shriek and moan about.

Just what is causing the shift is not fully understood,

It is questionable if there is even a shift! The whole concept depends on Victorian era research conducted on Europeans only. And despite researchers telling us that puberty starts earlier in sea level tropical urban populations, a disproportionate amount of the youngest mothers are from high altitude, cold climate, agrarian or subsistence societies, so go figure.

What I think is that nearly all the research is dominated by the Chicken Littles of the world, and you can't expect them to get it right, and even if they do, you can't expect them to tell us honestly. The real experts tend to get drummed out on suspicion of their motives for "knowing too much", which would seem patently absurd to any sane person unless the topic is tween or teen girls. Then suddenly, it all makes sense! Ridiculous!

0 ( +4 / -4 )

The article says: "According to a U.S. study published by the journal Pediatrics in 2010, 15% of American girls now have breasts by age seven, with similar trends observed in Europe and Australia."

This suggests that previously a lesser percentage had breasts (less than 15%) but no figure is given. Poor journalism.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Hey Miyazawa, I don't think it is reasonable to call all men "animals" and "perverts" because some corporations decide to make these products.

Who would be the ones buying it? Women. If they don't buy it then companies will just lose money and stop making it.

Who would probably see it if someone does buy it? Mothers and daughters, the occasional tween boyfriend, but not so likely some older men.

I'm specifically speaking of the case outside Japan.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

This is all aimed in completely the wrong direction.

I think what we need is for the lingerie makers to develop better and sexier underwear for attractive mature women... that's the demographic I am most interested in...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

too far. no one will be seeming my daughters underwear before she is 18 except their parents.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Miyazaki sorry if I misunderstood as well.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

oops, mistake. @miyazawa3 sorry if I misunderstood as well.

There is no edit button?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The men act like animals. They will not see differences between their mothers , sisters, daughters with their wifes

It's women who buy these things for their daughters. No father that I know would be happy to see his elementary school girl in a thong.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Hasn't the sexualizing of little girls already begun in Japan? First, the female college students started dressing like prostitutes. Next, mothers were dressing their pre-teen daughters in similar looks. Little girls should not wear crotch-hugging short-shorts and cavalier boots; ever.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

.many perverts deny the truth...

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Just to clarify - I meant the reporting of the study was factually incorrect, not the study itself. A reporter has taken the study and clearly twisted it to suit the report.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

If you put a turkey in a certain wig and some lace bras and panties, could you be accused of sexualizing turkeys? I mean, it seems what is in the apparel is far more significant than the apparel itself. There is no direct connection between lace, hairdos and sex. On the other hand, if you put a Playboy Playmate in Roadrunner briefs, would she lose that much sex appeal? I don't think so. Can you spot the 500 pound gorilla in the room that certain people are trying to pretend does not exist? Its at the root of this whole whine festival and its not going to change.

Concerns about the appropriateness of pre-teen lingerie has prompted Britain’s retail consortium to publish guidelines for manufacturers targeting young girls, urging them to avoid lace and push-up bras.

I wonder what sort of influence this consortium has? These are the sort of busy body people who hate us for our freedoms. They just cannot let the market decide, but feel they must cram their opinions down our throats and have us raise our children as THEY see fit.

What is funny is that this sort of thing looks to me like a direct result of the modern drive to instill girls with confidence. And here these people want to take it away!

When I was a boy, I had my Spider Man underwear, and I felt cool in those all day. Nobody saw them, but they inspired me anyway. If you gave a girl Wonder Woman underwear, I bet these same people would raise objections right along the same lines of "sexualizing little girls" as the lace and bras. These people are confused and inconsistent. Their conflicted opinions boil down to a lot of things, and none of them are positive.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Preteens do not have an income of their own, so it is the parents or guardians who purchase their clothing, incuding inderwear. I would think most of those responsible for chidcare will boycott clothing that is unfir for their childs age. A child is not a Bar doll, so I would sugest the designers go back to their drawing boards and come up with more appropriate attire for their ages

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Is weird to see the photos of Abercrombie for Kids.. isn´t it? Usually put kids in sexy poses and sometimes a little bit gay.... not sure if pedophile or just calling tweens to began using their sexuality...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Oooh! Hell-low choiwaruoyaji!

But actually, have to say that market is well catered for. It is just a question of whether the mature ladies themselves decide to opt for it.

We had a good giggle at our washing line a couple of years ago - 3 generations of knickers lined up - my daughters cute little girl ones, my bit of string, my Mothers slightly larger but still lacy and pretty bit of string, and my Mother in laws...well, I will stop there for fear of scaring you but I swear they blocked out the sun.....

-1 ( +1 / -2 )


But actually, have to say that market is well catered for. It is just a question of whether the mature ladies themselves decide to opt for it.

Many thanks for pointing that out...

I'm going to do my best to make sure that the good stuff in lingerie terms finds it's way into the hands of older women who appreciate it.

BTW make sure the washing line is well-concealed... knowing Japan it won't be just you and your family admiring the underwear on display...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Lingerie is something I would buy for my fiancee NOT my little girl. While these companies should take a lot of the blame. Any parent who buy their young daughters lingerie needs to seriously look at themselves. I certainly wouldn't buy my daughter any, no matter what age she is.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

See the pedos are out clicking the morally minded down. Disgraceful. STOP sexualizing CHILDREN!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )


-2 ( +1 / -3 )

to some this is not a tightrope by simply irresponsible

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Always thought 'Tweens' referred to people in their twenties, not pre-teens.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Also, in America (and increasingly Japan) a lot of modern parents use the "buy anything they ask for and be their friend" approach to parenting. And then there are the American equivalents to "gyaru-mama" out there who will dress their kid up like a tart because well, that's the way they dress, therefore there is nothing wrong with it. (same girls who refuse to breastfeed because "it hurts" and "your boobs get ugly"

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Seems like normal life in Tokyo. See it every day.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

BTW make sure the washing line is well-concealed... knowing Japan it won't be just you and your family admiring the underwear on display...

If they are brave enough to climb up to the 17th floor, I say give it to `em!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

and we still have posters railing about underwear in Japan

Becaue this is JapanToday and most commenters are living in Japan by any chance?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

another useless article for the pervert tastes

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Very dissapointing. I could be totally wrong but I just cannot picture any dad wanting his Tween daughter decked out in sexy lingerie. If I'm not wrong then these girl's mothers really need to understand that they are directing their daughters down a value path that is very shallow.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Mark Bradley @ You have a good name ...

I did not say, mean all men are pervert or animals..

I am extremely sorry, If I heart anybody.

But the people who let buying these product... You must have a control..

-3 ( +0 / -3 )


it is Sad.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Stop the sexualization of GIRLS for MONEY you VAMPIRES!

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Absolutely shocking that this stuff is sold in Japan!

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

The days are closer... The men act like animals.

They will not see differences between their mothers , sisters, daughters with their wifes.

-18 ( +2 / -20 )

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