If you are like me you have spent your whole life trying to find the perfect pair of jeans. Anyone who says jeans are comfortable, in my mind, can’t be trusted. I actually dread putting jeans on every morning. The first thing I do when I get home from work is walk to my room and take my jeans off. THE. FIRST. THING. Furthermore, we all say that size doesn’t matter but no one can deny that it does affect us emotionally. That’s why I did my own social experiment in vanity sizing. My friend Sarah dropped me off at the mall & I walked the entire perimeter of both floors and stopped in every store I’d typically buy jeans in. I picked up the same size pair of jeans at each store. To keep things somewhat consistent, the jeans I tried on in each store were the pair on the table in the front of the store. My rationale, those were the jeans I’d probably want since they are the most in style. I picked up the jean wash in all, no whites or blacks or colored jeans. I proceeded to the dressing room & tried each on. I took pictures & notes. Here’s what happened!
(Ranked below in order of “Fit” to “I can’t get these jeans up over my knees”)
Forever 21: Fit, would purchase.
Charlotte Russe: Fit, would purchase.
NY & Co: Fit, would purchase
Banana Republic: Fit, but snug, would purchase BUT would need to wear a flowy top to hide the slight muffin top.
J-Crew: Fit, but snug, would need bigger size if I was going to purchase & wear comfortably.
Express: Zipped, tiny muffin top, would need 1 size bigger if I was going to purchase.
American Eagle: Zipped, but major major muffin top, major wiggle dance to get in them. I would need 2 sizes bigger if I was going to purchase.
Holister: MADE IT HALFWAY UP MY BUTT. That’s it. Would have been a major rip IF I had continued. Would need at least 2 sizes up if I was going to purchase.
Aeropostale: Nope, not gonna zip. Would need at least 2 sizes bigger if I was going to purchase
Gap: DIDN’T EVEN MAKE IT PAST MY HIPS. LEGIT stopped. I would need 3 sizes bigger if I was going to purchase- This was shocking to me!!!
These results aren’t shocking. We all know that jeans fit us all so differently. And in no way is this a scientifically controlled experiment. It’s the real and raw reality of jean shopping. It’s a glimpse at just how frustrating it is to shop for jeans. How hard we work to find the perfect fit. How much money we spend on a pair of jeans that look good. And how often we DO think of that size. We often buy the smaller size as “motivation” to lose weight which is the most stressful thing we can do to ourselves. We often squeeze ourselves into the smaller size just so we know we are wearing the smaller size. And here’s what upsets me most, when you go try on jeans, if you’re like me, you always take the smaller size in hopes they fit. When they don’t, you subconsciously make a new goal to fit into those. It’s actually maddening. And we need to take back power of those tags.
I hope you think of this social experiment the next time you try on a pair of jeans and they don’t fit. There is literally only one reason I’d run around the mall trying on every pair, it’s because I feel so passionately about every woman ending the war they wage on their bodies. Remember, don’t blame yourself. As you can see from above, it’s NOT your fault that some jeans fit and some you can’t wiggle over your knees. You deserve more than to let a tiny number on the back of your pants determine your true value. And when all else fails, just f*cking wear leggings:)