Reviews | Popular clothing brands do not include the size

Making the trip to the mall with your friends and browsing through different stores together — maybe even finding your new favorite piece of clothing — is often a favorite pastime for teens and young adults. For some however, it is a burden.

I’m not talking about those who dread shopping for boredom. Too often, people struggle to find clothes that fit their body type. In recent years, the term “clothing inclusiveness” has been used to describe clothing that not only accommodates all bodies, but also all identities.

One of the biggest issues with clothing is sizing. Although some have made efforts to sell a wider range of clothing sizes, many popular brands today still lack a full range.

A study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2018 found that there has been an increase in weight and a decrease in size for both men and women since 1999. With the increase in the average height of the American population, some brands have adopted plus size clothing collections. However, the public was not satisfied with their efforts. The large size ranges, when they were introduced, had several issues.

Primarily, customers noted the lack of fashionable plus size clothing. Plus-size lines often differed in style from standard clothing lines and offered fewer options to choose from. Additionally, customers found that the plus size clothing they purchased was too baggy or did not fit properly. adapt their shape. Ironically, there was also a problem with the included sizes; what was once defined as “plus-size” now describes the size of the average American woman.

In response to these issues, many retailers have emerged with the goal of creating better plus size options, especially for women. One of the best claimed plus size clothing brands on the internet is ASOS. Unlike some other brands, ASOS doesn’t miss out on the fashion department for its plus size collection. Along with that, their clothes fit all shapes, with an entire line dedicated to accentuating women’s curves.

However, some brands still refrain from accommodating their customers. Brandy Melville is a very popular store with young women, but they carry no variation in size. Their one-size-fits-all policy actually only applies to those who are generally small in stature. And it’s no coincidence either – the CEO of Brandy Melville has made offensive statements about the physical characteristics of the people he wants to wear the brand.

When popular brands create an exclusive sizing system, it can be very harmful to the minds of young girls. Young women, very sensitive to stereotypes, may believe that their bodies have to fit within a certain size, leading to unhealthy and dangerous habits.

Big retailers should use their influence for good rather than harm. Target is a great example from a reputable chain that tries to satisfy its customers rather than make its customers satisfy them. Not only are they inclusive, but they are often more affordable than other brands. It comes as a blessing for those without access to clothing.

The fight for inclusive clothing has come a long way in the women’s department, but it remains lacking in the men’s department. Discussions circulating about portraying more diverse female role models are also raising the conversation about male role models. Stereotypically, male models have “a six-pack or (are) ultra skinny.” Including a wider range of sizes and styles for men is essential to allow for comfort and self-expression.

Shopping should never be a hassle. Everyone should be able to enjoy a day at the mall with their friends, without worrying about whether the clothes will suit them in the trendy stores they pass through. Inclusive clothing is not a desire, but a societal need.

Maggie is a sophomore at LAS.

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Michael O. Stutler