Most of us aren’t an average height and size 0 in jeans. Our sizes vary and our bodies are all different. This isn’t new information, but clothing companies don’t seem to realize this and the struggles that many have in finding clothing that fits.
Jean shopping encompasses the majority of my issues with shopping. As a 5’10” (177.8 cm) with a size 8-10 waistline, pants are constantly either long enough and too big around the waist, or too short and perfect around the waist. I simply can’t win. For a long time American Eagle and GAP were the only stores that worked for my body type, and then the GAP near me closed so I was left with only one option. I’ve been buying at American Eagle for years, but their sizes are so inconsistent. Last time I was there I walked in wearing size 8 jeans and walked out with 12’s that while long enough, were way too big.
While I don’t struggle with shopping for shirts, there are many that do. There are many more body types than small, medium, and large. Some have larger stomachs or broader shoulders, while some have the opposite.
We label ourselves as these sizes when sometimes we don’t actually fit right into the clothes that we buy.
Another type of clothing that always causes problems for me and many around me are bras. Bras are always uncomfortable and sometimes even painful, especially if they don’t fit right. At a 34DD, I’ve never had “average” breasts. Even in junior high, bra shopping was embarrassing and annoying as I shopped for bras much larger than other my age and struggled to fit into the ones at the store. After a few weeks, they’d begin to hurt and tug and I’d have to make another annoying and expensive trip to the store. I’m now buying all of my bras from a boutique over an hour away from my house. The bras are at least $100, and I have to drive quite a bit to get them, but they fit. I shouldn’t have to drive over and hour and spend hundreds of dollars just to be comfortable with my body and the clothing that I’m wearing.
Stores like Aerie and Victoria’s Secret may work for those with more standard bodies and that’s great, but for most girls, bra shopping is much more expensive, frustrating, and intricate than that. Also, many bras that fit aren’t necessarily sexy.
There are more categories of clothing that people struggle with other than the ones above, and mainstream stores don’t seem to realize this. It’s time for stores to embrace all body types and create more versatile clothing sizes and options. It’s time for many people including myself to be able to embrace our bodies while getting clothing that complements our bodies and our style.
I’m not a model, I’m not an average size, I’m a normal human being who wants to be okay with buying clothing, and I’m not the only one. It’s time for others to get that through their heads.