Loli, considered an abbreviation for Lolita, is mostly used either for small characters with a younger appearance, or sometimes for characters dressed in lolita fashion. When abbreviated as just "loli" its more often to describe small girl characters. Due to its nature, the majority of tagged works on pixiv are R-18 or R-18G.
The term "loli" refers to young looking girl characters, The male equivalent is "shota".
Characters described as "loli" often have some or all of the following traits
|Low age||Target characters frequently are given younger|
|Small features||The target tends to have a small girlish physical features(short height, smaller breasts, a smaller waist)|
|Younger face||Some characters can have younger facial proportions, giving a so called "baby-face".|
Loli body shape invention
For character design, there is value in creating distinction between girl and boy characters, even when there is minimal if any difference in reality.
For example, a real girls body shape is flat vertical line and featureless with a small torso or round portruding stomach. However, by adding more pronounced hips and tapering legs, a more feminine appeal can be created while retaining a cute appearance.
Lolicon and Pedophilia
The term "lolita complex"(lolicon) is often mistaken with "pedophilia"(an attraction to children). And the term "loli" is often mistakenly treated the same as "child" and its appeal is mistakenly viewed as being related to pedophilia.
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