As if to prove that the skippers of the fashion craft have finally gone off the deep end, mermaid-tail swimsuits are being promoted as the must-have accessories of what passes for the summer season.
The tails, available in a range of colours and textures, are custom-made for a skin-tight fit and engineered to facilitate actual swimming.
In a marketing campaign clearly contrived to make a splash, the mermaid outfits are being sold as a stylish breakthrough in the enhancement of female mystique and modesty. Men, we're confidently assured, have grown immune to the exposure of beach bums but are destined to be mesmerised by the graceful sight of a wiggling fin.
Literal tail-chasing, it seems, is infinitely preferable to the figurative variety.
In reality, however, any woman who presents herself as a mythological sea creature is hardly a sane man's idea of a good catch.