Kathryn Lindsay
May 11, 2016 8:05 am

Let’s be clear: We don’t think there’s any age when it’s appropriate to tell women what they can and can’t wear based on their body type. That being said, under 10-years old is definitely too young to be thinking about “curves.” However, that’s what tween magazine Discovery Girls did spread in their April/May 2016 issue titled “What Swimsuit Best Suits You?” The piece went viral after disappointed moms began posting photos of the article to Twitter over the past few days — and we agree that it’s totally not cool.

The spread divides girls into those who are “curvy on top,” “straight up and down,” and “rounder in the middle” while advising what kind of swimsuit is best for their individual bodies. While Discovery Girls may not have intended to encourage girls to worry about bodies, it certainly suggests to young readers that they can’t wear certain types of bathing suits.

Other users were just as stunned with the spread:

After such harsh outcry, Catherine Lee, publisher of Discovery Girls, took to Facebook yesterday to address everyone’s concerns, and apologize for this definite mistake:

[facebook url=https://www.facebook.com/DiscoveryGirls/posts/10153608874948519]

“I am in total agreement with all of you regarding this article, so much so that I wanted to make this letter as public as possible,” Catherine wrote, continuing, “It’s still hard for me to believe that an article so contrary to our magazine’s mission could have been published on our pages. I have been a loss for words for days.”

She went on to stress that the response from parents has been absolutely spot-on — this article did not promote the values of the magazine, and was dangerous to the impressionable minds of young readers, concluding:

This has been a learning moment for everyone involved. The one positive takeaway is that the cultural conversation around body image is shifting and consumers are pushing back when we don’t like what we see. If we can start this as early as childhood, then maybe soon girls will be able to grow up without a single person telling them that their body is something to hide.

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