Are Boutique Stores Really Serving the Plus Community?

 

A guest blog from our girl, Mel Mayhem! As one of our Bold Media models, Mel is an amazing contributor and writer! 

Have you ever been scrolling through Instagram or Facebook and you see some really cute clothing, and think to yourself, “Oh my gosh, I really hope that they have this in my size.”? You then take the chance and go check out their page and see that they advertise themselves as a company/boutique that carries “Sizes XS to 5XL” and suddenly get really excited… only to be disappointed when you go to their website and see that all of the cute clothing options are in sizes extra small to large? Or some might have extra-large? What do they mean they have plus size clothing? When all they have is a selection of 7 things in a drop box labeled “plus size section” and those 7 articles of clothing aren’t even in the size ranges they claimed to have?!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had this disappointment happen to me! And, what’s worse is that this isn’t just specific to my age group, but a problem that can plague any plus size woman or man at any age. I remember being as young as 15 and going, in person, to stores claiming to have plus sizes. Then, finding out that they did not or it was only on their online store that I could get those sizes, which at 15 was extremely disheartening! For years, I dreaded going to stores to shop for school clothing and, when old enough, clothing for the workplace due to not wanting to find more and more disappointment. What gives these stores, boutiques, companies the right to false advertise as they do? I understand that being plus size isn’t as frowned upon as before and that there are new designers and stores popping up almost daily that have trendy and age appropriate clothing for bigger sized men and women. But, it’s not ok to just try to gain popularity by saying you have bigger sizes than Large or Extra-Large when, in fact, you don’t. As much as society has moved in the right direction, away from constant fat shaming and certain stores actually beginning to carry larger sizes in store, this is still an on-going problem for most. It kills me to know that I’m not the only one experiencing let downs like this. Just because I’m bigger doesn’t mean I don’t deserve to wear cute clothing like any other sized woman. And, just because my friends aren’t bodybuilding men doesn’t mean they don’t deserve nicely made clothing either. I give major kudos to stores such as JCPenny and Hot Topic for finally moving in the right direction and offering age appropriate clothing for men and women of all sizes! My only hope is that more stores begin to do the same and that those who are lying when they say they carry large sizes stop doing so and making women feel they aren’t worthy of cute or stylish clothing.

 

Author: csalute

Christopher Salute is a Professor and Asst. Dean at Long Island University. His top three specialties include organizational change, market research, and digital marketing. Salute spent his career in banking, advertising, and e-commerce, working with firms like Yahoo! Inc., eBay, and Amazon.com. He has an earned Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with Minors in Business, Writing, and Communications from Siena College. His MBA in Management was earned at Molloy College. Salute completed his Ph.D. in Applied Organizational Psychology at Hofstra University. Read more at www.linkedin.com/pub/christopher-salute/7/ab9/261/.

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