File photo: Kim Kardashian shocked fans when she posted a picture of her four-year-old daughter North in a corset on Instagram. Picture: AP

London - Her curvy figure and waist-cinching clothes have won her millions of admirers. 

But Kim Kardashian shocked fans when she posted a picture of her four-year-old daughter North in a corset on Instagram. 

The reality TV star, 36, defended the choice of clothing, saying she thought it was "really cute". However, many critics on social media said it was not an appropriate outfit and accused her of sexualising her child, whose father is rapper Kanye West.

In a Twitter video on Wednesday night, Kardashian, who runs children's clothing brand Kids Supply with her husband, told followers it was not a boned corset but soft material layered over a dress. 

She said: "This dress, that I did not design, I actually bought, is not a corset. It's just fabric on the front that looks like it. I think it's really cute. I bought it from a designer and it's just fabric people, it's not a real corset."

But one online critic wrote: "The dress that Kim chose for her daughter North is inappropriate. It looks like a corset and the 'fabric' looks a bit harsh." 

Another wrote: "North West wearing a 'corset'? Let the child be a child."