But it turns out the accidentally eco-friendly moment in the iconic 1990 animated film has inspired stylish minds in another way of late.
An ASOS maxidress, priced at £55, has been jokingly compared to the leading red-haired character’s makeshift ensemble when she washed up on shore.
The cream, textured frock features black grosgrain straps, a square neckline, ruched detailing, floaty fit and an irregular hem.
One Twitter user pointed out the similarities between the two outfits to hilarious effect.
She wrote: “£55 to look like the Little Mermaid when she washed up onshore.”
Alongside her witty comment, she shared a picture of an ASOS model wearing the dress with black heels, and one of a barefoot Ariel wrapped in a sail.
The resemblance is uncanny - but we don’t think it was exactly what the online retailer’s designers were going for.
It comes as a live action remake of The Little Mermaid has been announced - thirty years after the original came out.
The release date for the film is yet to be confirmed.
Their ‘sail dress’ isn’t the first time ASOS have come under fire of late.
A Twitter user shared a picture of an ASOS outfit being made to look as though it fit better than it did on a model’s body by using bulldog clips to tighten the fabric.
Unfortunately for the fashion website, the rogue accessories hadn’t been edited out of the image - and it has sparked a backlash from shoppers feeling they are being mislead.