I love my curves and it’s taken me a long time to get to this point. I have spent a lot of my life making myself sick, pushing myself to my absolute limits because I was trying to look like everyone else, trying to be a size ten and now I’m done. So why is it now I’ve found love for my thick thighs and my size sixteen curves that the fashion industry is making it so hard for me to flaunt them? Why is plus size so extra?
I’ve spent the past two days trying to find some new luxury items for my wardrobe. Specifically I wanted a little black dress, some new lingerie and a vintage style bikini. I went out full of curvaceous confidence and came home completely deflated and feeling like the Michelin Man. At first I went into each shop looking at the items on the rack, searching for that perfect sexy dress or a top that would highlight my assets just right, only to find that the stock was only sized to a fourteen or a twelve. A TWELVE! I am a size sixteen, not a hippo but I was certainly made to feel like one! Sixteen is a common size, it’s an average size. So why, why, did I need to walk into each shop and subject myself to the humiliation of asking the assistant what the biggest stocked size was before I started perusing the rack?
Why, with body activists like Ashley Graham and Tess Holliday did I only find two stores, TWO, that stocked my size in a cut that even remotely fit me? Which brings me to my next point. Since when has there been such a huge disparity in sizes from store to store? I’m a size sixteen at Kmart and Target, a size 14 at Witchery and today, at Bras N Things I was sized as a fourteen yet I was unable to find an outfit that fit me in Myer or David Jones and you can forget about any of the boutiques like Sass & Bide or Alannah Hill.
In her new book Ashley talks about the sizing difference you can find between designers and between brands and that in her wardrobe she owns clothes from a size ten to a size twenty and says that you shouldn’t look at the size of the garment but the fit. But if I’m not supposed to look at the number on the scales or the size of my clothes then how do I gauge my self worth? This is a ridiculous question but I’m being serious. We are taught from a young age to compare ourselves to others, to care about how we look and what people think of us. So when you are unable to find clothes in your size what else are you going to take away from this experience other than that you aren’t good enough?
I just wanted to feel good about myself, to be as sexy and confident on the outside as I feel on the inside. Instead what I found was the feeling that, despite the hard work that I have put into myself physically and mentally, I am still not enough. That, despite Kim Kardashian and her butt and Ashley Graham and her wobbly thighs, my curves have still not been accepted by main stream retailers.
I think it’s time for designers and retailers to listen up. The internet is full of body activists, body positive movements like Eff Your Beauty Standards and There is No Wrong Way to Be a Woman and beautiful plus size women who are screaming out for clothes that are loud and colorful that keep up with trends. Curvy women are sexy and we aren’t going anywhere. I want to see women like me in magazines, I want to be able to walk into a store and not be afraid that I’m thirty seconds away from being shunned because of the shape of my body, I want to feel good about myself. I want my confidence back.
So mainstream retailers I challenge you to embrace the ever expanding plus size market! Be bold, be brave and say yes to curvy women, the fastest growing niche in fashion today.
If you have any brands that you would recommend to a fellow Curvy Queen comment below! Next up am I am venturing into the torturous world of plus size swim wear.
P.S. Remember that you are beautiful at any size.
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