One Size Fits All: But Does It Really?

Ginger Mullen

May 23rd, 2018

Walking into a Brandy Melville on a weekend I can guarantee you will find a display of identical shirts in muted colours, patterned pants, oversized sweaters and sweatshirts lining the walls with small groups of girls scattered throughout the store, cash eagerly clutched in their hands. Brandy Melville’s instant success is partially based on their on-trend apparel, but they also play off girls’ insecurities about their bodies and fitting in, which apparently is a market.

 

From the beginning, they made a consious business decision to only include one size for all of their clothing, claiming that “one size fits all.”Financially this marketing strategy is genius, but in terms of making customers feel welcome, it falls short. Identical models on their websites make it clear that if someone doesn't fit their requirements and cannot fit the clothes, they should not be representing Brandy Melville in the first place. With only one size to choose from, if the garment does not fit there is no other option. When measured, the clothes which are supposed to fit “most” is an equivalent to as small as UK size 2 which ranges between us sizes XS-S. The concept is not simply about a shirt, it’s really about making girls feel like they don't belong, and that they don't fulfill the criteria for being a normal teen during this day and age.

 

Only a couple weeks ago, one of the girls I babysit, age 11, told me that so many of the girls at her school were wearing Brandy Melville and that she liked the embroidered t-shirts (classic!) When I asked her opinion of the company, she said that it wouldn’t fit, her eyes cast on the floor, flustered. She mentioned that when she went shopping with her friends none of the clothing "fit her right." The rate of tweens genuinely believing that they need to diet is rapidly rising and beginning increasingly earlier. Companies that play a big role in formulating their opinions of "the perfect body" need to step up. The bottom line, is that no 11 year old girl, or any girl for that matter, should feel humiliated when none of the pants everyone else is trying on even fits over their thighs. Simply put, just producing one size to fit every different girl is something Brandy Melville should be ashamed of.

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