Kim Kardashian is insisting that she adhered to the Vatican dress code and "fully covered up" during a visit to holy sites during her current stay in Italy.

The 40-year-old reality TV star faced criticism from some online for wearing a sheer cut-out dress while on a trip to the independent city state within Rome.

Following her trip, she posted a number of photos on Instagram featuring her posing in locations around the Vatican alongside model Kate Moss.

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Kardashian said she had ensured she was dressed respectfully while inside St Peter's Basilica and the Sistine Chapel.

She wrote: "We had the most incredible experience touring Vatican City @vaticanmuseums. It was amazing to be able to view all of the iconic art, architecture and ancient Roman sculptures in person, especially Michelangelo’s works.

"We even had an opportunity to view their private archive of robes worn by every pope in history, dating back to the 1500’s. Thank you @ocspecial for arranging the visit.

"(Don’t worry, I adhered to the dress code and fully covered up while inside St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel’s)."

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According to the Vatican website, entry to the two sites, as well as its museums and gardens, is permitted only to "appropriately dressed visitors".

Sleeveless or low-cut garments, shorts above the knee, miniskirts and hats are not allowed, with tattoos that may offend Catholic morality or "common decency" also not permitted.

Kardashian is on a trip to the Italian capital with members of her make-up and style team and was also joined by Moss’ 18-year-old daughter Lila Grace at the Vatican.