I’m going to add a disclaimer to this before I start typing…..this is most definitely not a blog about dieting or exercise. It is about acceptance and self love and why retailers need to get their sizes standardised and not suggest we ‘size up’!
Clothes should make you feel comfortable, sexy, warm, cool, not the opposite, so why do we hold on to clothes that no longer fit us? Why as women do we have that yearning to be able to fit into the jeans we’ve had for the last 10 years? Why do we hold on to the dress that stretches at the seams when we wear it? I’ll tell you why, it’s because we have an ideal in our heads, a size that we must be to be sexy, to appear younger, to have our tits in the right place, to have a pert derriere not two wobbly cheeks that can’t be tamed in a large pair of knickers, this is an image that we are fed from the patriarchal gods of fashion on social media and from the pages of glossy magazines.
Not only do these patriarchal gods of fashion tell us the shape we should be to fit into these clothes but some tell us we should ‘size up’ even when we are moving upwards on the sizing scale, aka Mr Johnny Boden of the Boden clothing empire, he actually tells you to size up when you buy one of his fabulous and stylish swimsuits as I found out, oh Johnny you know how to make a woman feel good about herself especially when she’s just about to press on the size up from the one she normally has, you kindly suggest another step up on the size scale! Suggesting sizing up in swimwear is not just a step too far for women’s emotional and mental wellbeing it’s the same as asking a man to size down when buying a box of condoms.
Menopause and lockdown have given me the curves I never had but always longed for when I was younger, Marilyn Monroe for me was the perfect shape, curvaceous and sexy and a wholly womanly goddess, but when I was young I had a thigh gap, flat chest and pointy elbows which I absolutely detested. So now unlike so many woman I am embracing and loving my curves they make me feel like a woman, I like the wobble, I enjoy the movement my body now has when I walk. But the downside of my new loved curves is my clothes, very few fitted! So instead of holding on to them until I could ‘fit into them again’ I went shopping and I sized up to where I was comfortable and could once again move freely without a seam splitting. Of course when I was trying on clothes in Zara and H & M I had to size up up (it’s a given in these stores and a conversation my friends and I always have about their sizing) maybe they could get together with Johnny and decide to add a bit more material to their clothes and standardise their sizing?
As women we should never criticise ourselves for growing out of clothes, (and we should never listen to the afore mentioned retailers!) as long as we are healthy and happy, we must learn to love our new body shape as we age with all the glorious curves and wobbles our gorgeous bodies give us and love them for the true miracles they are. Let your clothes fit your body, don’t wait for your body to fit your clothes.