Health

Woman Points out a Body Shaming Reality She Faced After Buying Shorts

May 26th 2016

By:
Laura Donovan

A 20-year-old woman started a major discussion about retailer clothing size inconsistency after her Facebook post about purchasing shorts went viral.

Missy Rogers, is based in New Jersey and gained massive attention for writing about going from a size four to a size 10 in American Eagle shorts over the course of two years. Rogers posted a pair of the size four shorts she bought two years ago on top of the size 10 shorts she bought this year to show how similar they appear despite being drastically different sizes.

"The black is a size 4," she wrote. "The maroon is a size 10. As the photo shows, they both have the same waist line and width. The only difference is the year I bought them, length, and slightly different style. How is it that what was considered at size 4 is now the same dimensions of a size 10? How small has a size 4 become?"

It was disheartening for her that she could no longer fit into a size four this year. Once she bought the pair of size 10 shorts and took them home, however, she realized they weren't much bigger than the four. While this made her see that a size is "just a number," she expressed concern over how this kind of experience could impact younger girls:

"Having to go up to a size 10 made me question just how much weight I gained, but once I brought the shorts home and compared, I realized that size is literally just a number. However, I do worry about the message younger girls have with media promoting 'the perfect skinny body.' They have been convinced that the smaller size you are, the more beautiful you are. This is not the case, and I think it's important to show that clothing size should not define your beauty. If a size 10 is what a size 4 use to be, what message are you implying to younger girls?"

Size is relative to the brand, she explained. It's important to remember that you can be a "size 0 in one store and a size 12 in another," and that how you feel about yourself matters more than any number.

People have shared the post more than 70,000 times and responded with these comments:

Facebook

American Eagle, which was celebrated over the past two years for its anti-Photoshopping policy with its underwear brand Aerie, told ATTN: via email that the company agrees with Rogers' sentiment about numbers simply being numbers.

"We agree fully with Missy that women are so much more than numbers, which is why we are so strongly committed to body positivity," American Eagle's global brand president, Chad Kessler told ATTN:. "Like every retailer, we strive for consistency and clarity to help our customers make decisions. We’ve reached out to Missy to get her feedback on her shopping experience and look forward to engaging in a discussion around this important issue.”

Rogers clarified in a Thursday Facebook post that her hope was not to "target American Eagle specifically, but rather to show an example of inconsistent sizing that women (and some men) face in all stores."

 

"The purpose was to remind everyone that size is just a number and we should find clothing we like and feel comfortable in rather than worrying about the number on the tag," she wrote. "Love yourself and don't let the number define you. Also, I do believe that we should have consistency in clothing as it changes so much and varies between brands. As for articles that have been published since, please note that I wrote very in detail responses with emphasis on body positivity and the general struggle of finding clothes due to inconsistent sizes. Unfortunately, media does not have to include everything I wrote in response and can pick and choose simple sentences into matching what they want the public to see. Let it be known again that I am calling attention to the issues of sizing and inconsistency across all of the clothing industry ... Not just American Eagle."

This isn't the first time women have challenged sizes in fashion.

Last summer, Mallorie Carrington, the owner of body positive clothing line SmartGlamour, launched a body positive campaign titled #SameSizeDifferentEyes to show how women who are the same size might look significantly different in the same outfit.

She photographed women who are the same size in identical articles of clothing to highlight this contrast.

#SameSizeDifferentEyes

Carrington told ATTN: last summer that size inconsistency can make "shopping more tedious and confusing for some women" but is "pretty inevitable" due to mass manufacturing:

"This is why I stress so heavily that women become familiar with their shape, proportions, and measurements. If you know your bust, waist, and hip - you can check a size chart and see where you fall. You should also take into account the fabrication, its stretch, and the silhouette of the piece. We have to change the way we think about shopping and clothing and start demanding what we want and also learning how to get it for ourselves. When I had my three-month pop-up store in the East Village from March to May, that was one of my biggest goals. I wanted it to feel welcoming, educational, fun, and empowering. Those are not four words most women would attribute to shopping."

[H/T A Plus]

RELATED: SmartGlamour Wants to Educate Women About Clothing Sizes