Is Your Body Wrong? Clothing CEOs weigh in on women's bodies and why they don't work
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Man goes into store. Man looks around. Man sees pants. Man tries on pants. Pants don't fit. Man goes back to rack. Man picks up bigger pants. Man tries on pants. Pants fit. Man buys pants. Man gets on with his life. The End...
Woman goes into store. Woman looks around. Woman sees pants. Woman tries on pants. Pants don't fit. Woman either buys pants anyway or leaves store feeling humiliated, determined to 'fit into those pants next week'. To be continued.... Over the last few months my newsfeed has been assaulted by clothing CEOs from Abercrombie and Finch to Lululemon.
Frankly, some women’s bodies just don’t actually work for [the pants]' Chip Wilson, CEO of Lululemon
So what is wrong with this approach? What's wrong with marketing to tall, small, fat, thin etc? Why can't a company be exclusive about its clientele?
The answer is pretty simple .... 'Woman is determined to fit into those pants next week'. Clothing companies should be focused on making clothes that fit women. Instead women are focused on making their bodies fit the clothes that clothing companies make.
The Lululemon backstory is that the pants in question are just bad. They are poor quality, see-through and badly fitting. They recalled the pants back in April, lost $20million in sales and fired their chief product officer. To blame women's bodies is just a bad excuse for a bad product. At the very least, CEO of Abercrombie, Mike Jeffries, tells the truth about his approach:
In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids. Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely. Those companies that are in trouble are trying to target everybody: young, old, fat, skinny. But then you become totally vanilla. You don’t alienate anybody, but you don’t excite anybody, either. Mike Jeffries, CEO Of Abercrombie & Fitch
It really has nothing to do with women who should be wearing an extra large buying a medium and thinking that they can get away with it. Its also not about forcing Lululemon or Abercrombie to make plus size clothing. Its that Lulu and A&F are making clothes for the photoshopped woman. They aren't the only one. Even H&M admitted that their clothes were advertised on 'synthesized bodies'. They are then proclaiming this body type 'cool, popular, attractive etc' when in reality, just like Barbie dolls, the body is an anatomical impossibility.
Is there a solution? Next time it doesn't fit... don't buy it and tell the manager of the store why. So Lulu & Fitch, I'm officially breaking up with you and, before you ask, its not about me & my body... its about you & your product.