Mom disturbed when she sees bras for little girls in sizes as small as 4
Little girls like to copy their moms and older sisters. Walking around the house in a pair of high heels or getting your nails painted to look like Mommy’s is one thing, but padded bras for little girls as young as 4 are an actual thing, meaning your kindergartner can now wear coordinated undergarments.
Amy Yates, a mom to twin nine-year-old girls, drew attention to these itty bitty bras when she posted a photo of a Maidenform store display on Facebook, that was marketing bras to girls in sizes 4-6x. “Please explain to me why a 4-year-old needs/wants a padded bra,” she wrote. “Maidenform better get some hate on this.”
NBC7 spoke to Dr. Lisa Johnston, OB-GYN and mom to three girls to ask if bras for girls this young were problematic, and her answer was surprising. She says with doctors seeing girls going through puberty at younger ages, a bra could help them feel more secure in their changing body. “Trying to support your daughters and being comfortable in their own skin is an important thing,” she said,” and a lot of girls at that age probably do want to have a little bit of coverage and there’s nothing wrong with that.”
Yates doesn’t see it this way. She told NBC7 there’s a difference between sports bra style bras that can offer some coverage and support to budding young girls or prevent friction during sports, but Maidenform’s bras are in a completely different category. “My girls are very interested in things like origami and Pokémon at their age, they’re nine. They don’t need to go to the store and see bras that are lacy and sexy and marketed toward them because they’re going to think ‘Gee, is this what I’m supposed to be into right now?'”
Yates makes a good point. Helping your daughter build confidence is one thing, but does a kindergartner really need a leopard print bra to feel good about herself? These little girl bras do look disturbingly like adult bras. With their bright colors and patterns the only thing that separates these bras from the ones Victoria Secret’s Pink markets to college girls is the price tag.
For now, Maidenform thinks marketing bras to little girls who can’t even spell ‘bra’ yet is no big deal. In a statement to NBC7 the company wrote, “The Maidenform bras developed for girls are not meant to ‘enhance’ a girl’s figure. The ‘padding’ is thin stretch foam and is designed to provide modesty over figure enhancement.”
When you’re a girl who can’t wait to grow up, bras seem like the ultimate adult accessory. But women know the truth — bras are itchy, sweaty, and if they have an underwire, sometimes downright painful. We shouldn’t be rushing girls towards joining us in our discomfort, we should be encouraging them to enjoy the freedom while they can for as long as they can.