With the average American woman wearing between a size 16 and 18, according to a study by Washington State University assistant professor Deborah Christel, some have argued that the term "plus-size" is problematic because it categorizes a growing share of women and reinforces negative stereotypes.
Washington State University has announced new research out of their Department of Apparel, Merchandising, Design and Textiles that reveals heterosexual plus size women are forced to wear men’s clothing to workout. Marginalized by the fitness industry, plus size females are not provided feminine clothing to comfortably workout and are consequently victim to the idea that “if a woman wants to be fashionable she just needs to lose weight,” says Assistant Professor Deborah Christel of WSU.
The researchers polled 5,552 women via the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey to determine that the average woman wears a "straight" size 16 to 18—the equivalent of a "plus" 20W. Size 14 has generally been recognized as the beginning of plus-size clothing, and most brands run the majority of their apparel options in "straight sizes" 2 to 12, and then stop there. The options for larger women simply don't exist or are too low caliber, say Deborah Christel and Susan Dunn, the co-au...
"Most people assume that obesity and excess body weight is a choice and a personal problem," she continued, "I strongly disagree. Obesity is a very complex issue and many factors contribute to body weight."
And the fact that many trendy fitness brands don't make clothing above a certain size while larger women are often fat-shamed and told to "just work out more is "a vicious cycle that is perpetuated by many industries.
Overweight and obese people are highly discriminated against by p...
When I was first introduced to Health At Every Size® (HAES), I was working on my PhD in apparel design and studying sport and exercise psychology to help me understand the role of athletic clothing during physical activity. I discovered that not all women like their work-out clothing. However, to my surprise, it wasn’t necessarily the physical discomfort of the clothing itself that was problematic. Rather, the emotional discomfort of shopping presented a huge headache. Indeed, the major stres...
The Average America n Woman Is Now a Size 16
The news has major implications for retailers and the public's view of "average."
We already know that there's a lot of room for improvement when it comes to the accuracy of women's clothing sizes. In fact, research shows that most of them are total nonsense and based off of "vanity sizing." What's more, it turns out that the information retailers have been using is completely outdated.
As soon as Heidi Zak studied the numbers, she knew it was time to sell a bigger bra.
Zak, founder of the online start-up Third Love, has spent three years building her line. The company now offers 59 sizes, and it is testing 15 more. But demand - especially for larger sizes - is only rising.
Consider, she says: More than 500,000 women remain on the company's waiting list for bras in sizes like 44G and 46K.
"As soon as you look at the data, it's clear: It's a market that's so underserved," Za...
"Just because we're plus size, doesn't mean we have to prove that we're healthy," she captioned the Instagram photo, "just as someone who is smaller than us or average size doesn't have to prove they are healthy. We should be able to exist in our bodies."
The average woman in the US wears a size 14 — according to outdated information. A new study published in August in the International Journal of Fashion Design, Technology and Education decided to create a more current report.
What the study found was that size 14 is no longer accurate; the average American woman today is actually between a size 16 to 18.
The authors of the study looked at recent data from the Center for Disease Control and compared it to the ASTM International body measurem...
Until recently, it had long been estimated that the average American woman wore a US size 14, or just at the threshold between standard and plus-sizes. However, a new study by Deborah A. Christel and Susan C. Dunn of Washington State University, which was published in the International Journal of Fashion Design, Technology and Education, suggests that the average woman now wears between a size 16 and 18. Said differently, the average American woman is now, incongruously, considered "plus-size...
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