Bad Fit? Not Surprising…

Ever have trouble finding clothes that fit well? Well, you’re not alone. Also, it’s not your fault – the American sizing system is full of inconsistencies and just plain ridiculousness! Check out the following facts and stats:

  • 2/3 of all females consider themselves “special sized” or difficult to fit.
  • More than 60% of all American women are “plus size” i.e. size 14 or larger, but the plus size market only makes up 18% of total revenue in the apparel market for women.
  • 43% of American women are petite-sized, but petite clothing is hard to find, especially in” grown-up” stores. (MAN am I sick of punching 12-year old girls over sale jeans at Delia’s…)
  • Ill fit is the reason for about 40% of retail store apparel returns
  • 60% of all online apparel returns are due to fit problems
  • Most companies don’t follow standard sizing. Vanity sizing is also on the rise. For example, a woman who is a size 14 with regard to exact measurements may be able to fit into a size 10 at some stores.
  • Sizes vary even within a single brand! Some brands offer a variety of “fits” for the same size of jean, and these fits actually use different measurements.
  • A size 8 for one brand is likely NOT the same as the size 8 for another brand. If you don’t believe me, check out this chart.

So, next time you can’t find something that fits, don’t blame yourself for gaining/losing weight, being too short/tall or whatevs, blame the craziness of the current non-standardized sizing system. To get around the fit problem, get yourself measured by a professional or learn to take your own measurements. Go online to find the exact measurements for specific clothing items for specific brands – what exactly IS the bust measurement for a Ralph Lauren size-medium tee? Remember those brands that fit you well. Or consider buying custom-fitted clothing!

Do you have trouble finding clothes that fit well? How do you get around the problem? What are your go-to brands that fit you best? Let us know in the comments 🙂

Kristen P.

P.S. Here are my reference articles in case anyone wants to read more about apparel sizing:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2006/10/17/faith-based-sizing.html

http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/consuming-interests-blog/bal-consuming-retailers-fall-short-plus-size-women-20120914,0,5411461.story?track=rss

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/01/magazine/01plussize-t.html?pagewanted=all

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