Thursday, November 17, 2011

Vanity Sizing. It Does an Ego Good.

First, a brief announcement. I haven't had the excision on my arm yet (see the post below this one). That first dermatologist appointment was really more of a check with the excision--nice word--scheduled for Dec. 8. Just an update because several of you have texted or e-mailed. But for now, I still have all of the skin on my arm. Except for that little bit they took off originally.

And now, for today's post...

As I have lost weight over this past year, I have also, obviously, lost clothing sizes. Every once in awhile I like to go into a clothing store and try things on to see what size I am. Except that I'm left still not really knowing.

Not too long ago, I read in People magazine (yes, I confess to being a long-time subscriber. Don't judge me.) about Kirstie Allie's weight loss and how she is now a size 6. And then Tim Gunn (I think) was in the same issue saying, "Yeah, Kirstie looks great, but she's no size six," or something to that effect. (And when I looked at the pictures, I thought the same thing.)

Tim Gunn then went on to explain about vanity sizing--a term I had heard before but was selectively filtering out because yes, I do want to believe I'm that smaller size--and how it's rampant today. I wonder if a lot of it has to do with the, uh, upsizing of our nation's waistlines. Maybe people will buy more clothes if they can fit in a "14" versus an 18? I don't know what the logic is. I'm just guessing here.

If you Google vanity sizing, you'll get a ton of different opinions. Wikipedia feels vanity sizing is alive and well. Others say it's a myth. I feel like I remember my mom telling me that more expensive brands ran larger than cheaper brands, and I certainly have felt this has been true over the years.

But I have to say, I'm definitely feeling like vanity sizing is going on. You can't argue with Tim Gunn's facts. In the article he quoted actual measurements and how what was a 10 in the 1980s is inches smaller than what a 10 is now. It's vexing.

What do you think? Do you notice that you can buy smaller clothes these days? And what is your opinion on vanity sizing? I admit I like seeing the smaller sizes. Vanity at its finest!


Paige said...

Absolutely! Eddie Bauer is definitely guilty. I used to wear a 6-8 when I probably weighed 5 pounds less, and now I'm a 4, and the 4 is borderline too big. The thought of me wearing a size 2 makes me laugh but I'm only a few pounds from it at EB! My undies and shoes have stayed pretty consistent. :)

M said...

I shop in the teen section so I am always a large...and then when I go into the ladies section I am a small...funny how that is! No matter what I can't fit my legs into pants so I just wear capris and hope they never go out of style! Haven't tried the GAP like you suggested but Athleta sale pants did fit...and for $29.99 and 25% off :)

Kristie said...

For years I would read the "They lost half their body weight!" articles in People and see how someone had lost a hundred pounds (which, kudos to them) and were now 5"6, 150 pounds, and they were a size 4. And I'd think, "My sweet fanny they're a size four ..." because I would be 5"6, 160 pounds, and be a size 16. No way 10 pounds makes you drop THAT many clothing sizes!! So I always wondered where they shopped that their clothing sizes were so different than the places I shopped.

I have no doubt vanity sizing is alive and well and pandering to the female psyche. But I blame the media. When a size 12 girl is a PLUS size model, and we see actresses touted as size 0 or 1, no one wants to feel crappy about themselves and the fact their clothes are bigger sized. So they either don't shop, or don't buy. Designers arent' stupid ..... put a smaller number on the tag and everyone is happier!!

Julie said...

It is definitely alive and well. I've gained close to 25 lbs since I first got married, but I've only gone from a size 6 to an 8? Just doesn't make sense.