While browsing the internet a few years ago, as well as local department stores for ideas on Halloween costumes, I noticed a frightening trend. While the costumes remained scary, ghoulish, and otherwise Halloween-themed, I noticed the costumes for little girls were overly revealing.
The skirt and dress portions of the costumes had gotten much shorter. Many cat costumes for children resembled the revealing or sexy ones made for adults. Witches were sporting miniskirts and minidresses that hauntingly revealed too much.
I can understand that children enjoy looking like adults, but does that mean they should be dressing this revealing? I’m not talking about a normal-looking short skirt. I’m talking about dresses and skirts that are not just above the knees, but are mid-thigh and higher.
By the descriptions of the costumes above, it might appear that I am describing costumes for teenagers. Wrong. I am describing costumes designed for children 6 years old and up. Major retailers, one of which I am generally very fond of, were even carrying these seemingly inappropriate costumes for little girls.
At first, I wanted to blame this retailer for carrying these costumes, if they can be called that, as this was my first stop during my costume search. Then, with the next stop, then the next, and thereafter, I realized these were everywhere. I saw many little girl's princess costumes that were made extremely short. The Disney Princess costumes were not this way and, thankfully, are widely available. There were also unisex costumes, like dogs and other animals that were not drawing the line. So, all may not be lost.
After my terrifying search at retailers big and small, I decided to search online for an appropriate costume, but again, I was horrified as my internet search revealed the same results, at some times, even worse. Afraid of the trend I'd found, I searched and searched to find a site that did not offer any of these costumes. You would think my search terms were affecting my search, but not so. They simple and short, such as "Halloween costumes for kids". Search after search turned up so many inappropriate costumes for girls.
After that, I determined that I would continue to design and make my children's costumes, as usual. I did find many costume accessories that were much more appropriate than the costumes. There were plenty of princess crowns, wands, false teeth, capes, swords, various masks, and many other accessories. So, indeed, all was not lost.
I was just left to wonder who came up with the idea that children needed to dress up in costumes that reveal too much. Was it parents? Perhaps it was the retail stores. Maybe it was even the manufacturers of the costumes. If the parents agreed to this, that would be more frightening than the costumes.
UPDATE: As the years passed, I thought maybe the situation would improve. However, instead it has worsened. Yes, non-revealing costumes can still be found. But unfortunately, the sexy ones are growing increasingly popular as the time passes by. What message are we sending retailers when we allow this? More importantly, what are we teaching our children?
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network