Dr Oz: Is Vanity Sizing Real?
Have you ever gone on a shopping trip, only to try on clothes at a store and realize the size you normally wear is actually too big. Before you convince yourself you may have lost weight, pay attention to what Dr Oz found out when he learned about vanity sizing. Tia Brown took a trip to some of the most popular stores, explaining that size does matter, so what if stores purposefully label their clothes smaller than they are, to make customers feel good about buying them?
Tia visited four different retailers to try on four pairs of jeans, all in the exact same size, to find out how they fit. She selected a size eight, and at the first store found a pair that fit her perfectly. But when she went to the second and third stores, she could hardly squeeze into their size eight jeans and couldn’t button them at all. At the fourth store, the jeans were way too big! About vanity sizing, Tia said “it’s for real, and it’s insanity!”
Dr Oz: How Clothing Sizes Change
Tia then joined Dr Oz and explained that in the 1930’s, retailers realized that women were uncomfortable giving their sizes, measurements, and weight every time they went shopping. That’s when they came up with a scale, but those scale sizes have been sliding over the last few decades. What is now a size 8, would have been a size 14 or size 16, 50 years ago.
As for the actual measurements per size, it’s entirely up to the retailer’s discretion, because there’s no industry standard. Retailers use fit models, which is a person that they decide “embodies their target demographic.” The company then bases all their sizes off that fit model. That’s why it’s important to understand that sizes change depending on who the retailer is marketing to.
Dr Oz: How Sizes Vary Between Retailers
Tia explained that she could easily be a size eight her entire life because stores who targeted a younger demographic had a smaller size eight, while the stores who targeted an older demographic, had a larger size eight. She then showed Dr Oz four different pairs of jeans that were all a size eight with different waist sizes. One pair had a 28.5-inch waist, the second had a 29.1-inch waist, the third had a 31-inch waist, and the fourth had a 32-inch waist. It’s the waist circumference that varies the most based on target demographic.
To further prove their point, Dr Oz then turned to two women who were the exact same shape and weight, to highlight how the two women would wear completely different sizes in different stores. He introduced Amanda and Theresa, identical twins who were wearing black pants and white tops. Amanda was wearing a size 12 top and size 6 pants. Theresa was wearing a size 6 top and size 2 pants.
Dr Oz: Are You Fooled By Vanity Sizing?
To see how easily people would fall for the “vanity sizing trap” Dr Oz. When they were asked to look at three different black dresses, most people thought A was a small, B was a large, and C was a medium. The truth is that all three dresses were a size small.
This is all the more reason to not be married to a specific size and change your expectations. It’s about finding what works best for your style and your body.
Dr Oz: How To Fight Vanity Sizing
Hitha Herzog, a retail investigative reporter, explained that because we all have such different body types, it’s hard to have an industry standard. Stores use the sliding scale, but don’t disclose that they do. The average cost of a pair of jeans is $51, which has gone up 55% in 2015, which makes experts believe vanity sizing works. Dr Oz then reminded everyone that your waist should be no more than half your height, which means your actual measurement should be more important than your dress size.
Hitha suggested going into stores knowing your measurements. You can then match the size to an online sizing scale to know what size will fit you. You should also consider the cut, whether it’s boot-cut or skinny jeans. Finally, beware of younger branding because those stores are “infamous” for vanity sizing, according to Hitha.
What kinds of experiences have you had while shopping for jeans? Have you fallen victim to vanity sizing? Did you know about vanity sizing before Dr Oz highlighted it?