Livid parents have taken to social media to share a disturbing discovery with dolls popular with young girls around the world and in Australia.
Kate Worsfold is just one of the parents online sharing what happens with L.O.L Surprise dolls when placed in cold water.
In a live video on Facebook, Ms Worsfold demonstrated that the L.O.L dolls reveal lingerie, tattoos and suggestive slogans across genitals when she dunked each of them in a bowl of water and ice.
“What the f**k is this s**t that is being sold on the market for our little girls?” a furious Ms Worsfold said in the video, which has now amassed over five million views.
After taking them out of a bowl of water Ms Worsfold holds each doll to the camera to warn her followers what their daughters are potentially playing with.
“This doll, this underwear it looks like bandages or tape or some s**t and it starts to read ‘caution’ around her private parts ... on top of that on her hands are shackles, they turn into black shackles!” Ms Worsfold said.
The Aussie mum is not the only one shocked by the toys recommended for children aged three years and older by the manufacturer.
Hilary Williams from the US was shared a video on Facebook after she decided to see for herself what would happen to her six-year-old daughter’s L.O.L dolls when placed in cold water.
“Are you serious!... this is not fake,” she shocked mother said as she pulls a doll out of a bowl of water which was suddenly wearing black suspender stockings and a strap style bra.
Another doll when placed in the water showed just fishnet stockings, a devil tail tattoo and angle wings on its back.
Ms Williams also discovered that the hidden features on some of the dolls quickly disappear again once taken out of the cold water which she said would make them more difficult for parents to discover.
“So inappropriate for children and this is what we are buying for them, not knowing,” Ms Williams said.
Big W responds
Upset and angry parents responded to both Facebook videos expressing they would be boycotting the dolls due to the 'inappropriate' designs.
Yahoo News Australia approached retailers Target and Big W for comment, however only Big W responded at the time of publishing.
A spokesperson for Big W confirmed they had been contacted by customers who had “expressed concern with this range”.
“We are currently working closely with our suppliers to reach the best outcome for our customers,” a Big W spokesperson said.
Yahoo News Australia contacted L.O.L manufacturers, MGA Entertainment, for comment.
‘Blurs the lines’
Australian child and adolescent psychologist Dr Michael Carr-Gregg told Yahoo News Australia he believes these dolls are another example of how our culture encourages young girls to grow up too quickly, “driving childhood out of children”.
“My objection to these dolls is that they include clothing and underwear with sexualised slogans, bondage, and skimpy apparel,” he said.
Dr Carr-Gregg explained early sexualisation can send underlying messages to girls and negatively impact their self-esteem.
“Early sexualisation blurs the lines between sexual maturity and immaturity, and increases belief that their worth lies in their sexuality exploitation and abuse.
“One form of sexualisation is the deliberate marketing of adult, sexualised products to children, often to draw attention to adult sexual features girls do not yet possess,” he said.
Dr Carr-Gregg cautions there is research indicating that premature sexualisation or ‘adultification’ of children is damaging to children’s natural development and leads to a range of negative physical and mental health outcomes.
“The constant focus on physical appearance and sex appeal from the earliest of ages impacts on girls’ self esteem. Children do not develop healthy self-esteem if they are encouraged to focus on how they look or what clothes they are wearing,” Dr Carr-Gregg said.
Do you have a story tip? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.