The average size woman in America is a size 14, so you would think that many retail stores here in the United States catered to plus size women, right? The plus size market is valued at over $17.5 billion, so there should be plenty of retail stores for women who are full figured and fat to shop, right? No! Not that many to even enjoy a shopping trip with a group of your girlfriends. In most major department stores, you have to hunt for the plus size section, which is often in a small section in the corner, where you can see another confused, frustrated, and fed up fat femme giving you eye contact, because you guys can’t even find an outfit that’s not a body con dress.
Below, are the five struggles I face while shopping as a plus size shopper:
1.) The Models used to show plus-sized clothes are not true to plus size people.
I am a size 20 in dresses, a size 22 in jeans, and my bra size is 46G. I’m not the average plus size woman. I am super plus! I find it a struggle to see that plus size brands like Lane Bryant use models like Ashley Graham ( No shade, she is beautiful but she doesn’t represent ALL plus size women) that is a thinner plus size woman, to represent plus size community, when plus size women come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Can we get equal representation please?
2.) Clothes that are online tend to not be in stores.
Plus size women shop more online than they do in stores, well maybe that’s because our best options are only online it seems. With some retail stores, I do feel it’s necessary to have pieces in store and online, because I want to try it on. For women in general, how irritating it is to get something so trendy and cute online, try it on, and NOT FIT IT? That sucks.
3.) Unflattering Patterns, Unflattering Cuts, Too Much Floral, I am not your grandma’s curtain.
Why do designers feel that fat women don’t like what petite women like? Please, save the whole because I’m fat I can’t wear anything I want. Yes I can, and I will. When shopping in a retail store, seeing less trendy clothes in the plus size section gives me the idea that people feel fat women are unattractive and we don’t deserve to look good. If I’m coming into your store, eager to buy your clothes, I demand to see more trendy pieces.
4.) Where is the fitness wear? And when there is fitness wear, why it looks unflattering?
Oh so because I’m fat I don’t like to work out? Or because I’m fat, yoga pants aren’t for me? Give me those damn yoga pants! I, as well, go work out and I do like to take booty selfies on Instagram showing off my big ol’ booty. WE BUY FITNESS WEAR!
5.) Buying Plus Size clothing for expensive prices.
Plus Size women spend about $150 more a month, than the petite women. Am I paying extra because I have extra weight? There should be affordable, trendy clothing for plus size women and it is unfair to charge outrageous prices.
Many would take my struggles as if I was complaining and bitching about an issue that can be prevented if I just lost weight, but that is beside the issue. I love my body and I embrace my fatness every day. I shouldn’t have to lose weight and be bully into looking like America’s beauty standard. I don’t have the desire to be thin, but I do have the desire to have a fun shopping experience in retail stores like how thin women can do.