Take a look at the two cloth bodied dolls above. The one on the left has swivel arms and head, and the cloth body comes right up to the neck.
The doll on the right has a breast plate.
Does it matter?
Would this ballerina’s outfit look as good on the doll without the breast plate? And the cute tilt of the head? You can’t do that with the doll whose head simply swivels.
A three year old won’t notice, and a five year probably won’t care. So it’s really not that big a deal. But for your fashionista – she will care.
When you’re buying doll’s clothes, how much of the doll’s breast and shoulders will be exposed, and whether the doll even has a neck, is something you might want to consider.
PS: Breast plates, and dolls constructed with or without them are not something new… it has always been this way. Here is an antique doll (c. 1900) with breast plate construction. This doll had shoulders and a neck. The holes are where her body would have been attached (sewn). Her arms were undoubtedly cloth as well. (And she probably had a glued on wig.)