Model Kendall Jenner, 14, Defends Bikini Pics

Sexy photos of the Kardashian girls' younger sis caused an uproar, but now the aspiring model speaks out

When Kim Kardashian posted Kendall Jenner 's new bikini photos on her blog, she was just trying to be supportive of her half-sister's modeling career. Instead, she set off a firestorm about whether those sultry bikini photos are appropriate for a 14-year-old girl. Last week, iVillage weighed in on the controversy. And on Wednesday, Jenner herself released a statement defending her intentions.

"Going into this shoot, it was never my intention to be provocative or too racy," Jenner told People. "It was a beach shoot, and I was wearing beachwear. I am happy with my age, and am not trying to rush into anything too soon. I look forward to all the milestones my teens have to offer -- Sweet 16, turning 18, and so on."

As for the question any mother would ask -- why didn't her parents say "no" to the sexy shoot? -- Jenner says that they know she's "responsible enough that I wouldn't do anything I wasn't ready to do, or didn't want to do."

We hate to admit it, but maybe Jenner (or at least, her manager) actually does know what she's doing. Yes, the photos are shocking -- mostly because the Kardashians' little sibling looks so much older than her years. But they don't have the overly sexy quality of, say, any given picture from the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. Perhaps a 14-year-old shouldn't have been doing a bikini shoot in the first place, but as bikini shoots go, it's relatively modest.

And the thing we're all forgetting is that this is pretty standard fare for a teenage model these days. Most runway models, according to USA Today, are between 14 and 19. That means that teen models aren't mainly wearing "teenage" clothes or doing adolescent-themed shoots -- as far as the fashion industry is concerned, they're grown-ups. Models are getting so young, in fact, that designer Michael Kors made waves earlier this year by banning girls under 16 from his shows. One of the top models in the world today is Karlie Kloss, who's only 17. If Kendall Jenner is entering into a serious modeling career, she has a few short years to establish herself as a major player -- and a provocative shoot with a famous photographer is probably a smart move.

Does this mean the modeling industry is screwed up? Perhaps; we certainly feel for the many teenage girls who are told they have no future in the business once they reach adult age. But Jenner's not to blame -- she's just doing her job. Whether she should have that job in the first place is another question, and one that we hope parents Kris and Bruce Jenner have thought long and hard about.

Do you think Kendall Jenner's bikini photos are inappropriate? Chime in below!

Like This? Read These:
- Should 14-Year-Old Kendall Jenner Be Doing a Bikini Shoot?
- What to Do When Your Kids' Favorite Teen Stars Take Off Their Clothes?
- Do Teen Celebs Belong in Women's Magazines?

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