'I'm sexy and I know it': NZ Sale slammed for controversial kids clothes

  • 30/11/2017
"It sends some very weird messages. I only barely knew what sex was at age 9."
"It sends some very weird messages. I only barely knew what sex was at age 9." Photo credit: NZSALE

A New Zealand internet retailer has come under fire for selling "weird" and "inappropriate" sexualised clothing to young girls.

The dress, sold by NZSALE, was marketed for children aged three to nine. It comes with the message "I'm sexy and I know it" on the front.

It's described as being "beautifully designed clothing for your little one", as well as "durable and stylish".

New Zealand singer and social campaigner Lizzie Marvelly criticised the dress, saying it wasn't appropriate for the age group.

"I don't think that the slogan on the dress is appropriate for 3-9 year olds. It's a shame, because the dress itself is pretty cool," she told Newshub.

"For those who do understand the slogan, I believe it sends some very weird messages. I only barely knew what sex was at age 9."

Her comments were backed up the Children's Commissioner, Judge Andrew Becroft, who said "on the face of it, the item seems inappropriate for a small child".

Disgusted New Zealand mothers have also been scathing of the dress.

"Ew, what the heck," one angry mother told Newshub.

When contacted by Newshub, NZSALE apologised for putting the item on sale.

"Thank you for raising this and I apologise for the inconvenience caused," a spokesperson told Newshub.

"I can completely understand that this is disturbing and have raised this with my manager to review this and have it sorted. Thank you once again for raising your concerns as we appreciate this."

NZSALE says the dress has now been "sold out" on its website, and is no longer available.

Ms Marvelly says the dress shouldn't have been available to children in the first place.

"It's more that this item shouldn't be bought in New Zealand (or anywhere else, for that matter). Let kids be kids," she says.

"The test is probably whether you'd feel comfortable telling a 9-year-old that they were 'sexy'. I certainly wouldn't.

"There's nothing wrong with young children feeling confident about their bodies and appearances, but when clothing is explicitly encouraging people to think about kids through a sexual lens, it's gone too far."