Kylie Jenner raised a lot of eyebrows with the racy little Balmain dress she wore to dinner with her mother and family after the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday. (Photo: Splash News)
“Risqué,” “barely there,” and “daring” are not typical descriptors of a dress that most teens would wear out to eat with Mom, but then Kylie Jenner isn’t most teens.
Following the Miley Cyrus skinfest at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, the Kardashian clan’s youngest member revealed lots of herself as well, swapping the long-sleeved Balmain mini that she rocked on the red carpet for a similarly skintight cutout dress by the same designer later that evening when she met up with family for a bite at Craig’s in Hollywood.
And though her sister Kim Kardashian showed off her curves too in a lace-up dress, and their mom, Kris Jenner, sported a plunging neckline to boot, it was 18-year-old Kylie’s bondage-style ensemble — which she was photographed pulling up over her chest to keep covered at one point — that sparked the most reaction online. “My mom would not let me out of the house in this outfit, never mind sit across a dinner table,” wrote just one of the hundreds of commenters on Facebook and news sites questioning whether her look was appropriate.
Photo: Splash News
“For most 18-year-olds having dinner with most parents, to say this leave-little-to-the-imagination dress is a fashion ‘don’t’ is an understatement,” image consultant Carol Davidson tells Yahoo Parenting. “But this type of ensemble is what we’ve come to expect from this family, so I doubt it even raised an eyebrow, from her mom or from their fans.”
Within the context of the Keeping Up With the Kardashians reality fame, Davidson, founder of Styleworks of Union Square Inc. in New York City, adds that Kylie’s look actually isn’t out there at all. “This outfit is clearly consistent with the Kardashian-Jenner brand and what her handlers feel she needs to wear to ‘keep up,’ pun intended, with the rest of her sisters.”
The approximately $900 dress is a sign of the times, in fact, says Davidson, as celebrities constantly strive to get and keep attention on themselves. “Let’s be honest,” she says, “we would not even be having this conversation if Kylie showed up wearing a simple yet elegant black sheath dress.” This dinner was not, after all, about sharing quality time with her mother. “And this outfit is all about dressing for a photo op rather than dressing for the situation,” adds Davidson, who calls the whole publicity parade “classic TMI.”
Not that the teen would be troubled to hear she’s being judged. “You are always going to have haters and negative comments,” Kylie told ET Online about her reaction to social media remarks directed at her. And when it comes to her fashion sense, the recent high school graduate aims to stand apart anyway. “I just try to find what makes me feel good,” she told Teen Vogue in April, “and be as confident as possible.”
For nonfamous teens and daughters, dinner duds will likely look far different from Kylie’s — and so they should, according to Davidson. “It’s all about dressing for the situation or occasion,” the expert insists. “As a society, we have certainly become a lot less rigid when it comes to dress codes, but still, decency and good taste should prevail. It’s all about balance. You can decide to dress a bit alluring, but good taste dictates that if you are exposing skin in one area, cover up another.”