When Suri Cruise goes out walking in her sparkly, high-heeled shoes, parenting groups have a conniption. More and more young girls are wearing the very adult footwear, and some parents fear that’s prematurely sexualizing them, the Daily Telegraph reports. Retailers like GapKids and Next are now selling heels for girls as young as three, and some “look more suited to a lap dancing club than the feet of a young girl,” says representative from the parenting forum Mumsnet.
There are health worries as well. “The fact children can wear these is worrying,” says one podiatrist. “Wearing them can cause strains in the back which is a potential problem for their growth and development.” GapKids says its shoes are tested for safety, while Next says that the shoes sell well, suggesting that “many parents agree we’ve come up with a look that’s special without seeming inappropriately grown up.” (Read more high heels stories.)