The Story Of The Term Plus Size
The average dress size is a 16 and bra size is now a DD, so, what is plus size? We have had a lot of discussions here at Bloom Bras since our current range goes from a 28D – 44K. Those body types look very different but have similar challenges namely in finding products that work for us. If you put 10 women who are all a 38DDD – one of our most common sizes – next to each other, they look very different. Some breasts are fuller on top, some round out on the sides, some have been nursed and most are not symmetrical. Plus, we have different desired outcomes.
In a traditional line of bras, manufacturers will grade goods by scaling up a certain percentage. When you get into some of the larger sizes, this is just not an option. The zipper length, for instance, had to increase at a different grade the larger the cup size is. This is one reason that most of the larger brands do not carry products for women with curves.
Lack of Plus Size Clothing Options
The comments on social media for fat shaming are enough to make anyone’s blood boil. It gives me such pleasure to watch the rise of body positivity sites and communities. Business Insider famously outed Abercrombie & Fitch’s CEO Mike Jeffries “In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids,” he told the site. “Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.”
The athletic wear industry is predicted to hit almost $350 Billion this year. The plus size fashion industry is estimated to hit $14 billion. Brands such as Lululemon, only sell up to a 12 in order to protect their image and have reduced inventory on larger sizes. A Huffington Post article exposed ex-employees hiding larger sizes “this treatment of larger clothes and customers reflects the culture that Lululemon represents — one that falsely suggests skinniness is the paramount feature of health.”
So what is plus size? I am a 32GG and have never been able to buy bras in stores – especially sports bras. I’m curvy so is Oprah, Chelsea Handler, Melissa McCartney, Katy Perry, Wendy Williams, and 67% of the active female population. I spend time each day talking to our consumers. We can all agree on this. There are not a lot of great solutions that are out there but once we find them, we share like crazy.
I personally would love to change the narrative and invite you to do the same. Please share your stories and help. Here is a link to our shop page