While the size ‘0’ measurement has been around for a long time, this new one size measurement being introduced into some Teen stores seems relatively new. And at the risk of offending you and your favorite store, I have to say, this retail strategy drives me crazy………. there is no such thing as a size ‘0’ person and there is no such thing as ‘One Size’, despite what your favorite clothing store may say.
I know that you know that there is no such thing as ‘one size fits all’. But this is why this strategy infuriates me so much. What the store is actually saying is not …‘one size fits all’ but rather that… ‘this is the one size that is most important and the only one we really care about and if you don’t fit it then we don’t want you anyway’. Sure, it is very hard for any store to cater to every size and shape in the world. But these stores often cater to a very, very narrow segment – not out of necessity, but by choice. The strategy being used here is ‘Exclusivity’ – a club that only certain people will have the ability to join. And in order to keep the club as exclusive as possible, the segment defined is usually very narrow (hey, we don’t want everyone!). And an easy way exclude a large portion of the Teen segment is by size, which is why many of these stores only stock small sizes.
“To be able to shimmy into Brandy Melville’s only size of skinny jeans, a girl would need to have a 25 inch waist – that’s around a size 0 or 2, depending on the brand. Most skirts and shorts on the website are about the same size. Similar skinny jeans at teen fashion powerhouse Forever 21 span sizes from 24 to 30 inches. In the U. S., the average 16 year old girl is approximately 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighs about 138 pounds and has around a 31-inch waist, according to a 2012 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
The marketing ploy here is obvious – the more you try to keep people out, the more people will want in – they will want to feel that they are somehow ‘good enough’ to get in where other’s failed. It is just one more marketing strategy which plays on young girls’ insecurities.
So if you are ever faced with a rack of one size clothing that you know will never possibly fit you – please don’t let that make you feel bad. Please don’t feel like you have to change yourself to please the store or their definition of beauty. Because all the store really wants from you is your money and this is just one more in a long line of strategies to get it.