It's 2018. Curves are finally "in." With celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Iskra Lawrence, and Ashley Graham gracing TV screens, magazine covers, and runways, women everywhere are finally feeling more confident in their bodies and no longer feel the excessive need to contort themselves into twiggy size two's. I, for one, am pretty glad that women with my body type are now being represented in places that were once only exclusive to stick-thin models. So yeah, curves are great. However, they're not so great in the dressing room. Any fellow curvy girl reading this knows exactly what I mean. There are the size differences with each brand, the difficulty converting US sizes to European only to find you need two sizes up (cough H&M cough), pants not going up past your thighs or butt, and don't even get me started about prints. Here are just five of the many struggles us curvy girls face when buying clothes.
Why oh why can't clothing companies understand women's bodies?? Please, make jeans that fit both our thighs, butt, and waists. I'm sick of having to buy stretchy-fit or go two sizes up. And when I go two sizes up its so loose in the waist that I need to buy a belt. Or worse, when it fits the waist it's way too tight everywhere else. Don't even get me started on jean shorts. Let's just say they should be renamed jean wedgie underwear...
Accommodating for large hips
It seems like a majority of fashion stores fail to realize that not all women are skinny and straight-cut. Women with larger hips need more stretch. Pencil skirts, for example, feel like a corset for my lower half. Bodycon dresses don't stretch enough. Mini skirts ride up. Non-stretch jeans don't even make it past my knees. Sigh. Shakira was right. These hips don't lie, they speak the truth: body-hugging clothing is not our friend.
Swimsuits. That is all.
Dear God, why must every swim bottom ride up my butt? Why can't I look like those swim models on Instagram with enough bottom coverage? There's no worse feeling than walking around in a swimsuit, feeling the back slowly creep up places it shouldn't and not being able to adjust, especially when you're getting out of the water and gravity works against you. (This happened to me while I getting out of a pool at a party this past summer, so, so awkward. Cringe forever).
Everything becomes NSFW
It's not your intention, but pretty much anything even slightly figure-hugging will look risque. A simple white button-down shows more boob than you intended, pencil skirts draw more attention to your lower half than you wanted, A-line dresses look too short or too "tight," skinny jeans look like they were painted on. We can't control this and we don't do it on purpose. It's just our bodies. We can't win! The only option is to just embrace it, ladies.
The dressing room, more like the disappointment room.
Just writing this gives me flashbacks. The fluorescent lights, the small room, the mirrors, all of it make for a shopping experience from Hell. We see angles we really did not want to see, feel waves of sadness when the outfit doesn't look the way we hoped, and worse, we see just how awkward we are while trying to squeeze into a size we thought would fit. The disappointment we feel when those jeans don't get up past our mid-thighs, or when the buttons won't snap on that cute blouse we adore, or when the dress is too tight. All of this is projected via 3-fold mirrors like some horror film that we, unfortunately, are the star of. But hey, on the bright side, when we do find the right fit, we know how to rock it!
So yeah, shopping is no walk in the park for curvier girls. The fashion industry, while progressing in the right direction, still isn't there yet as far as accommodating for ALL body-types. Every woman is different. One size does not fit all. Girls with curvier figures want to look cute, too. Stores like Forever 21, H&M, and Pacsun need to get with the picture and redesign their clothes and sizes. I'm a natural size 6/8 and have to take a size L or 12 in these three stores. If women are to feel comfortable in their own skin, the fashion industry needs to listen and learn. Curves are beautiful. They're womanly. They should be celebrated, not hidden behind wrong sizes or baggy clothing. Love what you have. Rock what you've got.