Shout out to all the parents raising little girls these days, because in the digital age, that’s getting harder and harder—especially when it comes to girls’ clothing. In our society, girls are bombarded with constant messaging about how their bodies are supposed to look — and studies show they become cognizant of it from shockingly young ages. That’s why we’re applauding one mom on TikTok, who’s taking a stand against clothing that sexualizes young girls and refusing to let her little one dress as anything but what she is: a little girl.
Melissa, who goes by @mrsmommymel on TikTok, posted the video where she stitched a response to the statement, “Normalize little girls wearing little girl clothing.” In her response video, she made a list of “Things I won’t let my 4-year-old wear,” and it’s spot on.
“Clothes I’m not dressing my 4-year-old in with little-to-no explanation — walk with me,” she begins her video, setting the tone for her no-holds-barred approach to this topic.
She then launches right into her list of what’s a ‘no’ on her list of girls’ clothing.
“Bikinis and two-piece swimsuits. No,” she says. “None of those mini high-heeled kiddie shoes. If she’s not in, like, ballroom dancing, then it’s a no.”
She continues, “No nail polish, until she’s, I don’t know, 7 or 8? I’m choosing an arbitrary number because I feel like it’s far away, but no nail polish for the time being. Fight me.”
Another one? “No crop tops or adult-looking clothes, just in miniature.”
She prefaces the next item with, “You’re all gonna get mad at me for this one, but no false hair. No false hair. Again, she’s four. It’s not needed. She has a full head of hair, knock on wood. No.”
To help explain why she feels so strongly, Melissa tells a story from before she was a mom.
“Two women who were in their 40s who had pre-teen or early teen daughters were talking about how they were absolutely disgusted and annoyed about the way their daughters were dressing,” she said. But someone else who walked by and overheard the conversation between the women jumped in and asked, “Who’s buying her these clothes? If you’re not happy with what she’s wearing or you think it’s inappropriate, why are you buying her these clothes? Who’s the parent here?”
Melissa added, “Me, in my early 20s, watching this exchange — I always had this in the back of my mind. It’s one thing if they’re at a certain age and they want to express themselves. We can cross that bridge. But when they’re not even making their own money to buy clothes and you’re buying things that are inappropriate to you — what are we doing?”
And clearly anticipating some backlash for her strong opinions, Melissa had a message for anyone before they headed to her comments section: “For anyone who wants to come at me and say anything about her expressing herself, I made this video about my 4-year-old daughter. She is four. I am her mother, and she is four.”