The Loose Women panel have slammed a mum who’s encouraged a fake tan ‘addiction’ in her 12-year-old daughter.
The mum in question, Bex Whalley, 32, had told The Sun newspaper that after taking her daughter Ebony to the salon for a spray tan when she was 10, she hasn’t gone more than 24 hours without topping up and that she spends around £200 per month on their tans.
Discussing the story on Friday’s show, Andrea McLean, Nadia Sawalha, Kay Adams and Linda Robson appeared unimpressed with the revelation, agreeing that young girls’ relationships with their body image needs to be navigated with care.
‘It’s almost nurturing body dysmorphia,’ said Nadia, to swelling applause. ‘Why would you put a spray tan on a young girl other than to say ‘the way you look [without it] isn’t right’?’
Dismissing the argument that spray tans aren’t as harmful as sunbeds or natural tans, the panellists pointed out that the issue here was with encouraging the young girl to chase an image of perfection – which doesn’t exist.
Nadia continued: ‘There is an actual thing called tanorexia, where people will chase a tan… and to put that on a 10-year-old and start that obsession with the way you look [is awful].’
Kay agreed: ‘This cream doesn’t cause any problems, but then it leads to [an obsession with] actual tanning. It’s about the reinforcement of this obsession. If we’re introducing it into a girl’s life that, your looks are the primary thing on which you’re going to be judged, we know we’re starting problems. ‘
Linda revealed that her own daughter, now 21, is an ‘absolutely beautiful girl’, but sees pictures in the media and on the television and thinks she isn’t good enough.
Social media was quick to agree with the Loose ladies’ views, some going so far as to suggest this mother’s actions are ‘child abuse.’
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‘No definitely not, or make up, if she wants to as an adult that’s her choice I wouldn’t make it for her and ruin her delicate skin,’ said one Twitter user.
‘[O]mg no of course not , let them be kids so much pressure on kids these days!’ said another.
What do you think? Is spray tanning a child the first step to unhealthy body image? Let us know in the comments!