Many Clothing Stores Have Zilch for the Average American Woman


Unless you regularly shop for plus-size clothing, you may not realize how fucking hard it is to find plus-size clothing in stores. This is a big deal, since time and time again, we hear that the average American woman wears a 14 or 16. The size at which “plus” begins.

As women who wear plus sizes know, if you want something to wear, you’ve got to shop online. The Huffington Post reports that online retailer ModCloth conducted a survey — polling over 5,000 women — and found that there were more “wearing a size 16 dress than those who wear a size 2 and size 0 combined.” And yet! Some of the most popular stores in the country — Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, H&M, J.Crew, American Apparel, Abercrombie & Fitch — do not carry sizes above 12 or 14 in stores. As seen in the chart here, even though some retailers make sizes above 12 or 16, they don’t stock them in stores; shoppers have to order them online. If it’s not you, it could be your friends, your mom, your coworkers — someone you know is being routinely discriminated against when it comes to being able to shop for a dress in a store.

Again: Plus size shoppers already know this. We shop online because we don’t have a choice. But as our own Laura Beck wrote a couple of weeks ago, “If size 14 is really the average size of the American woman, it makes an insane amount of sense from a business POV to dive into the fat end of the swimming pool.”


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