How the fashion industry ruins self-esteem…

I am writing today about how the fashion industry ruins the self-esteem of women, specifically.

I recently began to work at a women’s clothing store.  I had never really shopped there before gaining employment so had no predispositions to the place.  You can bet I do now.

As a store clerk, there really isn’t much to do if customers are merely browsing or trying things on.  This leaves ample time for observation, something at which I excel.

During my observations, I would look around the store, stare at various clothing items, eavesdrop on customers remarks about the clothing, browse the store website.  My conclusion is that the designs do nothing to flatter the naturally beautiful body of the female human.

The majority of the shirts in this store are not curved to suit our shape.  The look more like a man’s shape.  In a women’s clothing store? Yes, indeed.  Even the dresses–an article of clothing that ought to be one of the most flattering–are lacking in curves.

Moving on to pants: The most flattering place for pants to fall on a woman is at the natural waist (which we don’t like very much anymore because it isn’t terribly comfortable) or right beneath the belly button, or anywhere in between.  Any lower and the pants fall right beneath our widest part, or even below that very feminine “pooch” to use the term of one of my co-workers.  The other day a girl–who looked like the type who was always skinny without needing to work very hard–was poking her “pooch” outside the dressing room and complaining about her weight.

Before I move on, let me clarify that this “pooch” is not some disgusting lump of fat that we need be ashamed of.  We have this spot because that is where the babies hang out when we carry them.  In this sense, we should look at that spot and see great beauty.

But, the fact of the matter is, if pants fall below this spot it does not flatter the natural beauty we have.  And yet, most pants these days are “low-rise” and therefore fall nicely beneath this interesting line of anatomy.  Combine this with the long shirts that are now in fashion and you have a not-so-lovely focal point emphasizing what is often construed as ugly.  Sure, with the shirts we are modest, but the length only adds to the emphasis.

And, even if we are lucky enough to find pants the hang at a reasonable and flattering place, these long shirts lying on all that fabric makes the overlap look bulky, which is never flattering.

So, with all these designs that seem more befitting a man or some sort of version of human that doesn’t actually exist, women get the idea that we should fit into something that simply isn’t designed for our bodies.  We look at our curves fitting awkwardly into cloth ill-designed to fit them and feel shame.

I really don’t know what started this trend.  I really wish it would finish, and the glorification of natural beauty would return, or appear for the first time.

One thought on “How the fashion industry ruins self-esteem…

  1. I think it is the pants! We really need them to fit a little higher in the waist. You are so right that they hit at the widest point and we think we are ugly but it’s the clothes. I agree. I want you to redesign the pant! I love that you sit and listen and watch and soak up everything around you. Nice observations. I like the long shirt idea but with the wrong pants, it fails. I hope someone does something about this soon!

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