I was inspired to write this post after continuously seeing a few articles that I felt belittled the plus size, full bust community. I’m not going to point fingers, and this is probably a bold statement to make…..But I was offended and ticked off when I read a post yesterday that not only called out those that cry out for more plus size/full bust options, but also stated that there are clearly many options for plus size, full busted women. Where some are offended, others are not, so please keep in mind that this viewpoint is mine, and this posts reflects my own reactions and my own beliefs.
Let me start with an explanation of what sizes mean to me – and I do not mean to pigeon hole anyone….This is merely how I view sizes and make sense of them
- A size 18 or larger in tops and bottoms
- Band sizes 38 and larger
- A size 10-16 in tops and bottoms
- Band sizes 32-36
- A size 0-8
- Band sizes 30 and below
It’s obvious that my perceptions of size are different from industry standards, which look a little something like this:
“Industry Standard” sizes:
- 4-14 clothing
“Industry Plus” sizes:
- 16+ clothing
Where do my perceptions come from?
I think one of the most influential things in my perceptions of size comes from the world around me. The reality is that some 50% of American women wear a size 14 or larger (loosely relative to a 36 band). And I see this everywhere. When I go to the mall, when I go out to eat, to the movies….you name it. Maybe it’s where I live. Or where I choose to shop. But I know that almost 80% of the women I see on a daily basis are clearly what the industry calls “plus size”.
I think it also doesn’t help that for the longest time, I thought most women wore 34 bands (ooh, my poor bra education!), even when they were quite thin.
I was also raised in a predominantly obese family. My aunts all wore sizes 26-30, and even my own mother was overweight.
Let me just get it out there: No, there’s nothing wrong with being plus size.
So what’s my problem and purpose of this post?
I’ve said it before, and I will probably say it again….There really aren’t that many options for plus size, full busted women. Especially not US based brands. A lot of articles that seem to belittle this idea often tout brands like Cleo by Panache, Parfait by Affinitas, Claudette, etc., etc., etc… But a quick look at each brand’s website will show you that most bands stop at a 38, and even at that, the cup size offerings are limited. To me, stopping at a 38 doesn’t really even tap the sizes needed by the Plus Size community. If 50% of American women wear a size 14 or larger, that means there’s a lot of women who wear plus sizes (and probably plus size bands) who need larger than a 36 band – even though many full bust companies stop at a 38 band.
I know this post is quite a bit of a rant, kind of like my post “Being the Odd Woman Out – Part 1″. While I’ve never considered myself to be a minority, in the lingerie industry, I feel like I am. And I don’t like feeling that way.
I hate to be so negative and so blah, but I’m itching for more sensitivity from writers whose work is seen by a lot of people. I only hope that as we share information with the purpose of providing plus size, full busted women with options, that those options reflect a wide range of sizes so that women that are larger than a 38 band who are searching for help actually have companies to choose from that DO make their sizes
Because really, if plus size full bust companies stop at a 38….then what are band sizes bigger than a 38 considered? I’d hate to ask, as I’d probably be offended even further.
And now, back to our regularly scheduled programming. Happy Wednesday Folks!