France is set to ban child beauty pageants because they promote the 'hyper-sexualisation' of children
The BBC reports that the Senate in France adopted the bill by 196 votes to 146 votes on Tuesday evening (September 17). The bill now needs to be passed by the National Assembly before it becomes law.
If it does get passed, organisers of pageants could face fines of up to 30,000 euros (around £25,000).
The move comes after a row over a Vogue magazine photo shoot which showed a girl aged 10, alongside two others, in heavy make-up and tight dresses. High heels and expensive jewellery were also worn.
Whilst Vogue defended the pictures, claiming the photos portrayed a fantasy of young girls who want to dress like their mothers, the row didn't go away.
Before the bill was passed, parliament heard a report entitled Against Hyper-Sexualisation: A New Fight for Equality, which called for the ban of pageants for under 16s.
The author of the report – which also called for a ban on child-sized adult clothing, including push-up bras and high-heeled shoes - former Sports Minister Chantal Jouanno, said: "Let us not make our girls believe from a very young age that their worth is only judged by their appearance."
So, will other countries follow suit?
American TV audiences are regularly treated to episodes showcasing the world of child pageants such as Toddler and Tiaras, and the show is also shown over here.
Child beauty pageant are also popular in the UK. Miss Mini Princess UK is currently open for entries, and asks 'that every princess entered must be prepared to give it all they've got.'
The blurb on their website reads:
"Every princess must be prepared to give it all they've got to compete to become Miss Mini Princess Uk this pageant is a full glitz pageant and is USA style think toddlers and tiaras with our own British twist!"
Last year we met four-year-old Ocean who was crowned Britain's Most Beautiful Toddler at the controversial under-12 Miss Glitz Sparkle.
Ocean's mum Bianca Alsop, 26, admitted to using minimal sun protection so that the little girl could achieve a perfect tan while competing in a tiny pink swimsuit.
But despite criticism, Bianca declared herself a proud mum, saying: "Winning was the best prize for me. As a mother you think your child is the most beautiful - and this confirmed it."
What do you think? Would you welcome a ban on pageants for under 16s? Do you enter your children into contests?