Clothing Sizes are Not Your Friend

Last weekend I took decided to be brave and go on a hunt for new pants. This might seem silly to some, but pants are hard for me. My big (but not big enough) hips and butt, my belly squish and my big (strong, gorgeous) thighs mean that I don’t easily fit most of the pants on the rack. 

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When I was younger and many sizes larger I thought it was because I was just “too big” overall. Choices were limited. But as I’ve shrunk over the years I’ve found that pants are just a b*tch in general. 

My biggest issue is that if I can find jeans that fit my legs, they’re way too big in the waist. If I can manage to squeeze my legs into pants that fit in the waist, the legs end up being so tight they pull the waist and stretch the pants. Either way same uncomfortable problem. 

Anyway, lately I’ve noticed that my pants are a little big and decided to buy some new ones. Unsure whether it was due to two years of stretching fabric and I was still a 12 or if I’d actually lost weight and was something smaller, I went in unsure of my size. 

Naturally I went to the jeans wall in target and got ten pairs of jeans in three different fits and four different sizes. At one point I put on a 12 that was a tiny bit too big and then a 6 that was too short but otherwise almost right. Yeah a 12 and then a 6. Same brand. 

What the hell?

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I could go on and on about how the numeric sizing in women’s clothing doesn’t even make sense and men’s clothing going by measurements if much more useful, but that’s a post for another day. My issue is that, if I can manage to not let a number define my body and if I can avoid the media barrage of impossible bodies, I’m still confronted with total confusion in the dressing room. I’ve grown a serious garden of love flowers to cushion my body but I can only take so much of this bull honkey. 

Eventually I went into a random store in the mall and bought a 29…This number sounded like men’s sizing but unless I’m measuring myself incorrectly, that’s not true. 

So, I ended up buying pants and I like them but bro, what the hell? The fashion industry has got to be stopped with the confusing numbers and the ridiculous sizing. 

Oh and then I went back to the same store a week later to get another pair of the exact same pants and ended up needing a 27…what?

Have any of you had a similar experience or is it just me and my “weird” body over here? Let me know in the comments and, as always, best of luck.

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14 thoughts on “Clothing Sizes are Not Your Friend

  1. Since I now mostly wear pants that stretch, sizing is not really an issue in that area. I did recently have a similar experience with shoes, though. Two pairs the same size and same manufacturer, slightly different styles. One was too big and one was too small. By then I didn’t even want to try to find one that was just right!

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  2. It took 18 years but I finally found my magic jeans. If the store ever stops carrying them, I will definitely stockpile because as you know finding the right pair is insane. That said, I hate every pair of dress pants I have ever tried on, including the two I own. They are always baggy somewhere and make me look really short

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    • OMG yes! Dress pants are the absolute worst for some reason. Luckily I can wear jeans to work, if not I’d be in trouble. Hold on to your magic jeans and I’ll hope my new ones are the pair that lasts. Thanks for reading!

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    • Right? That’s so bizarre to me. I can kind of understand if there are different styles or stores involved and maybe even different times but there should be a somewhat unified size chart. Thanks for your thoughts and for reading!

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  3. My late mother-in-law used to believe that if clothes were made in Asia, they were sized small. I’ve followed a rule of thumb that the cheaper the clothes, the larger number I’d need. High-end clothes used “vanity sizing.” Now I’m not so sure, but I share your pain. I’m usually a 14 in pants, but once, using the manufacturer’s measurements, I ordered a 10, and they fit! And like you, I’ve bought the same style and brand of pants in different colors and found them not to fit the same. Argh.

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    • That is an excellent point, where clothes are made is a big deal for size (and for a lot of other reasons). It’s just frustrating to see so much variance when we already live in a body-obsessed culture. Thank you for your thoughts and for reading!

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