Australian fashion experts not impressed as teens undress to impress
Natasha Harris, of Reservoir, says she feels comfortable in clingy clothes. Picture: Chris Scott
TEENAGE girls are flaunting more skin than ever, raising the eyebrows of many women across Melbourne as hemlines get shorter and shorter
Girls as young as 13 are purposely – and proudly – revealing breasts, backsides, navels and backs, and wearing clothing so tight and fitted that little is left to the imagination.
Fashion and etiquette experts have issued a plea to girls to cover up, with one even accusing some young women of dressing like “streetwalkers”.
Vogue editor Kirstie Clements said it appeared many teenagers were making a concerted effort to look trashy and wear little to no clothing.
“Skirts so short they didn’t even cover the butt cheeks,” she said.
“Half a metre of stretch nylon seems to suffice as a dress.
“Where have all the teenage girls gone who just look pretty and fresh, with sandals and a cotton sundress on?”
Former Cleo and Australian Women’s Weekly editor turned etiquette queen Ita Buttrose said “less is best” did not apply to the way you get dressed.
“Sometimes I think that you can be more alluring covered up than you can be uncovered,” she said.
“I see girls heading off to work in tops that I think are too low-cut for the office. I think some girls do themselves a disservice by letting so much hang out.”
Fashion commentator Zoe Foster said the tight, skimpy trend was being influenced by reality TV stars such as Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton, celebrities who have become fashion idols by pairing super-short dresses with stripper-style platform heels.
“Girls feel they have to show legs, breasts and bum to be sexy and to stand out,” Ms Foster said.
“I see young girls out on a Friday night and all I want to do is put a jacket on them,” she said.
Shop Til You Drop editor Justine Cullen wrote in her editor’s column this month in a bid to get young women to cover up, calling for “basic nipple and private-parts coverage”.
“Why has it become so hard to tell your average 20-something from your average streetwalker?” Ms Cullen wrote.
But young women on Melbourne’s streets yesterday defended their right to choose.
Natasha Harris, 19, said she respected other people’s opinions, but fashion constantly evolved. The personal assistant said some people should remember they “grew up in a different era”.
“You need to look professional, but you can still look young and vibrant. It’s good we can be a bit more liberated now,” she said.
For more on the fashion experts who are asking girls to wear more clothing go to the Herald Sun.