Does Size Matter?
As an image professional, I see fresh fashion come into the stores each season. When I get my clients into the dressing room to try on these new styles, I often bring in two or three sizes of the same piece. What I know from experience is that I can’t rely on sizes being equal in every brand.
My goal is to get my client into the best fitting pant, top, dress, or jean. When she goes home with a shopping bag of new clothes, items could be in four or five different sizes. What I know is that she looks great in these new pieces. They fit well, they flatter her figure and that’s what matters.
Yet sizes can be such a stumbling block for women. If they’ve always been a size 10, they are loath to go up a size even if it looks better on them. They reject fit and comfort and want to squeeze into that size 10 no matter the image cost.
Let’s talk about that cost.
When the seams of a garment are straining, this is what people may surmise:
"This woman must be out of touch or maybe she doesn’t care how she looks."
The same can be said about the woman who wears baggy, ill-fitting clothes.
People size you up in seconds and if you look uncomfortable or out of touch in your clothes then your image as a confident, successful person drops. Doubt comes into the picture. Your reputation takes a blow.
This is too big a price to pay for trying to fit into a garment that matches a number you’re used to instead of fiddling with different sizes to find the piece that most lines up with the shape of your body. For a woman wearing clothes that are too big, she may not trust the new sizes I’m putting her into because she has that same hold about “being” a certain size.
Where do you suppose this obsessive hold on size comes from?
Sometimes it's a husband or mother who was obsessed with a woman being a certain size. And if she wasn’t that size, she spent years and years not accepting herself or loving herself as she was.
Clearly peer pressure still plays a big factor, as young women are obsessed with size and calories before they are even in their teens. This can be a wake-up call to who those of us who have been so hard on ourselves - we can see the pain and pattern of self-criticism the young women around us are starting to develop.
I so remember my high school years and my feelings
surrounding size - I was taller than most of the other girls
and weighed more. This was great when trying out for
the basketball team, but not so great when it
came time for cheerleader tryouts. I still tried out,
but it was always the small, petite girls who won out.
Of course, once I got out in the real world, I learned
that tall wasn't bad at all, but I did struggle
with that number on the scale for a long time,
always trying to get down into the 120's. Now that feels laughable,
since I know that my 5'9" frame just can't exist at that weight.
But try telling me that in my younger years!
This I know: Your body is aching to feel accepted just as it is, today, right now. You can give your body that gift by adorning it in clothes that fit and flatter. It’s a fallacy to think that being a certain size is the only time you’ll be attractive. It’s best to drop any expectation you have about sizing.
One of my favorite tips on dealing with size is this: