This is why you're a different clothing size in every store

By admin
05 August 2016

"It's not you. It's the industry."

Ever wondered how you can be a size 32 in one brand and a 36 in another?

To prove this bizarre trend, Dion Lee from Vox tried on three different pairs of pants in the same size and three different stores — Zara, Topshop, and Forever 21

"They were all labeled as a 4 (32), but the results were vastly different," she reveals.

"The pair from Zara ended up fitting very loosely on my waist, while the ones from Forever 21 were so small that I couldn't even zip them up. The jeans from Topshop were the only pair that actually fit me properly."

Read more: Man calls out women’s ‘body-shaming sizes’ after trying on girlfriend’s ‘XL’ clothing

The video explains these stark discrepancies using 'vanity sizing' - the "practice of assigning smaller sizes to articles of manufactured clothing than is really the case, in order to encourage sales".

In order words, this manipulation of sizes is a marketing tool "to make women seem skinnier in order to sell more garments". And this can vary from one store to the next because brands tend to target different demographics.

Read more: This plus-size model had the perfect response to body shamers everywhere

“I think we’re more aiming for our own target markets,” explains Lynn Boorady, associate professor and chair of fashion and textile technology department at SUNY Buffalo State.

“So, when Abercrombie & Fitch does their sizing, they’re sizing to their targeting market, not to me. We kept tweaking that information until we sold more garments and could lower the return rate.”

As a case in point, in June Ruth Clemens posted an open letter to H&M, for not being able to fit into its size 16 (44) jeans despite wearing a size medium shirt.

"Why are you making jeans that are unrealistically small?" she wrote in the viral letter.

"Am I too fat for your everyday range? Should I just accept that accessible and affordable high street and on-trend fashion isn't for people like me?"

So next time you struggle to fit into your usual clothing size at a 'younger' brand's store, remember it's really not you.

“They are just random numbers, they don’t mean anything.”

Watch the video for more information.


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