The sweet smell of perfume, the shiny leather handbags, the bright fluorescent lights–I could go up and down the aisles of any department store looking at the endless racks of clothes for hours.
Still, as much as I love fashion, it can be hard sometimes trying to find clothes that fit. In one brand I wear a medium, but in another I wear a large. The sizing is so arbitrary. And even worse, in stores like Brandy Melville, which market themselves as a “One Size Fits All” brand, I always leave feeling awful about my body. When I was in middle school, I was mortified when I would go into Brandy with all my friends and none of their clothes fit me in the dressing rooms. Looking in the mirror, I berated myself over the fact that I could not wear the Brandy styles all the girls at school had. Their clothes just didn’t suit my body type, and no matter how much I exercised or controlled what I ate, I couldn’t change that. But as I’ve grown up, I’ve come to realize how ridiculous this “One Size Fits All” idea truly is.
Did you know that 9 in every 10 American women are unhappy with their body? While this statistic may seem far fetched, the reality is that everybody has something about their body that they don’t like. Our society has conditioned us to believe that we will never be pretty enough, skinny enough, or confident enough. And in the age of social media, we are constantly exposed to photoshopped images we believe to be real-life, and this completely distorts our view of what our bodies should look like and how we should dress.
Fashion shouldn’t be about trying to emulate your favorite influencer on Instagram; it should be about expressing your unique self. Any clothing store that makes you feel ashamed or embarrassed about your body really isn’t worth your time. No matter if you are small, tall, short, curvy, or thin, you should be able to wear what you like and not feel constricted by limited sizing options.
It took me years to accept the fact that one size does not fit all. With this new mindset, now when I go shopping, I try not to give much thought to the sizes I’m buying. Of course, everyone has bad days, but even so, whenever I look at myself in the mirror now, I attempt to focus only on the positive.
So please, Brandy Melville, let’s stop this “One Size Fits All” nonsense. We all deserve to embrace our bodies for what they really are: beautiful and more than enough.