Dear My Size… NO.

Published August 2, 2012 by sleepydumpling

**Update** My Size have blocked me from commenting on their Facebook page.  It seems that instead of addressing criticism about their marketing, they just shut any of their target audience that dares speak up out.  They will never get another penny of my money, and I will continue to  monitor their marketing and publicly criticise it if it continues to be as bad as it has been of late.

I just opened my Facebook to see this post from Australian plus-size clothing retailer My Size*:

[image description: cartoon of two children, a girl and a boy, and the boy is whispering in the girl's ear "Dear Girls, Dressing immodestly is like rolling around in manure. Yes you'll get attention, but mostly from pigs. Sincerely, Real Men."]

And I’m gobsmacked.  I mean, who is writing their social media PR, Tony Abbott?  Rush Limbaugh?  This is beyond a joke.  Not only is the cartoon really douchey, but look at the comment from My Size under it:

Styles come and go but class stays forever!  Wen you’re putting your outfit together, make sure that you feel comfortable, not too much is on show and that everything fits well.

I mean seriously!  Let’s break this down and have a look at exactly why this whole post is just disgusting  We’ll start with the cartoon itself.

  1. My Size sells plus-size women’s clothing.  “Dear Girls” is incredibly infantilising.  Your customers are not girls who need instruction on how to behave.  We are women.
  2. Dressing immodestly?  Who chooses what is modest and what is immodest?  I work with people who consider pants “immodest”.  Some people consider women exposing their hair “immodest”.  “Modesty” is a completely arbitrary measure.
  3. This is slut shaming.  It basically says that girls should be “modest” if they want to be treated with respect.  That the only attention “immodest” girls (which suggests women who are sexual, or show any of their flesh) is from “pigs”.
  4. So dressing “immodestly” is like rolling around in manure.  Are you suggesting that women who don’t dress to some standard of “modesty” look like shit My Size?
  5. And the signature – “Sincerely, Real Men”.  Who gets to decide which men are “real”?  What if men like women who dress sexy?  Does that mean they are by default pigs?
  6. I don’t know about most of you, but I don’t get up in the morning and decide what to wear based on how “Real Men” (whatever that is) will judge my outfit.  I dress for ME and how men, real or otherwise, feel about my outfit is irrelevant.

But the caption written by the My Size staffer is a whole new level of judgemental bullshit.

  1. The whole style vs class thing.   Again, who decides what is stylish and what is classy?  Does classy mean expensive?  Or “modest”?  Yet another arbitrary judgement of what is acceptable and what isn’t.
  2. “Make sure you feel comfortable and that everything fits well” – yep, I’m with you there.  Comfort and clothes that fit you so that you are comfortable and not pulling, tugging and adjusting is a great idea.
  3. But “not too much is on show”.  Excuse me, are you selling me clothes My Size or are you caring for my immortal soul?  Who gets to decide what is “too much”.  Is my cleavage, or my legs, or my arms, or whatever other flesh I choose to show “too offensive” because I’m fat or just because I’m a woman?    What happens if I show “too much”?  Oh that’s right, I look like shit and only get attention from pigs.

Look, I don’t care how people choose to dress.  Covered from neck to ankle, or with their flesh exposed all over the place, that’s their choice, their bodies and their lives.  But I do care when a business that is supposed to be selling me fashionable plus-sized clothing for my fat body starts preaching about modesty, “real men” and class.  It’s not your job My Size to tell women how to dress, it’s your job to provide options to your customers,  so that they may choose for themselves how they wish to dress.  But if you as a business are not a fan of revealing clothes, then simply don’t offer them in your product lines – those who want something more sexy or revealing will go elsewhere, or they’ll doctor your products (wear a top as a dress anyone?)  After all, what products you wish to offer are yours to decide, and in turn any customers/potential customers will make their own choice as to whether or not they wish to spend their money with you.

I also care when a business engages in misogyny, fat shaming and slut shaming.  I care when a business suggests that my role is to dress to please “real men”, or to earn respect from people other than “pigs”.  I care when a business suggests that somehow if a woman is “immodest” that she isn’t “classy”.  I care when a business suggests that my body should be covered as if it is something to be ashamed of.

This kind of post is not acceptable on social media (or anywhere else) from a business, especially not one aimed at plus-sized women.  Bad form My Size, very bad form.  You won’t be getting any of my money in the near future.

*not linking to them, you can use your Google Fu to find them, right now I don’t want to promote them positively in any way.  And as of publication, the image I took a screen shot of and posted above is still live, with several people echoing my sentiments at how douchey the post is.
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34 comments on “Dear My Size… NO.

  • This is BIZARRE! It’s like a lecture from your mother. Cover it up, fatties! Our styles will make sure no one sees your big boobies, because of course that would be the end of civilization.

    Did you ever read Michelle Duggar on why their family covers up from neck to ankle? IMHO it is sick. The idea is that if someone sees her thigh, they will be overcome with lustful thoughts – and she won’t deliver on them. Therefore even CHILDREN have to cover up to prevent any false advertising (I forget their bizarro term for it). Yeah, keep those thighs covered – anything could happen!

    • Nellie I have to make it clear – it’s perfectly acceptable for someone, like Mrs Duggar, to choose to dress conservatively. That’s her choice for herself and her children (hopefully as they grow up they can make their own choices).

      The issue here is not with people dressing conservatively, it’s with a business judging what is “immodest” and “classy” and sending misogynistic, slut shaming messages out on their facebook page about it.

  • I couldn’t believe their post when a friend linked to it on Facebook. I’ve bought a lot of clothes from them over years & I’m staggered that they’d post something that insulting to a lot of their customer base.
    I hope it was just a thoughtless individual person, rather than the views of the company as a whole.

  • I am just too rage-face to even say anything intelligible about this, aside from, “What the ever-loving fuck?!?”

    I’ve never heard of My Size (except for the American brand of bras and pantyhose called Just My Size…whose products I never cared much for anyhow), but rest assured they will NEVER see one penny from me.

  • Totally with you on this one. I hate, hate, hate that silent misogyny pushed on women by companies that should encourage women to feel beautiful and comfortable in any clothes they like, not have moral judgements on them (based on that choices). it’s RIDICULOUS.

  • I’m really just over My Size’s fashion ‘tips’ in general. They continually encourage women to hide their ‘flaws’ (read- hide their bodies) and conform to the notion that the only acceptable fat body is one that is hidden or in a ‘flattering’ outfit. Go fuck yourself My Size, stop telling me how to dress and stick to selling clothes instead of bigoted ideals

  • Wow. They might as well have said: “Dear customers, You are hideous, foul, and scarily hyper-sexual simply by the act of existing. Show respect for your disgustingness by buying our clothes and completely swaddling yourself in them, because you don’t understand the power of your own horrifying boobies… which word we are using because ‘breasts’ are grown-up things.”

    My reply: “Dear My Size. Witness my middle fingers and twirl, baby, twirl.”

    Oh, and way to other any queer customers you might have. Because it’s all about how the menz see women. We’re only allowed to think about the male gaze.

  • I have words about the “modesty” thing. Many, many words, most of which are of the profane variety.

    Also “Real Men”? “Pigs”? Is this the kind of image a clothing retailer should be presenting?

  • I hate beyond words when people use “classy” as a synonym for “appropriate” or “elegant”, because those qualities are not synonymous with social or economic class.

  • Agreed! And frankly My Size, I dont give a shit what men think! And why should I? Also, your clothes are really expensive,($100 on average for a shirt? are you serious?) and is why i prefer to find gorgeous, modern clothes from different purveyors over the internet.

  • Ugh, so aggravating! I’d been admiring some of the new dresses in My Size’s range but like hell I’m going to give them my money now. I would very much like to know who is responsible for their social media marketing, because they’re doing it wrong! So many plus size fashion labels seem to do their social media marketing wrong :(

    On the other hand, I was looking at Elomi lingerie on Facebook today and was delighted with their social media marketing. Lots of fat positive links, photos and comments. My Size could take a leaf out of their book.

  • Dear My Size,

    I used to buy quite a bit from you, but over the last few years your quality has declined precipitously. Apparently, though, I needed this last little push to unsubscribe from your catalogues and email list. Thanks for that!

  • I love that you went point by point with this! I agree completely!! Ah it is so nice to have company (even if it is internet company!) for my perspectives. :):) I just moved into a new community and am remembering how quickly I can make myself unpopular with the general public by throwing wrenches in diet talk/shaming instead of agreeing.

    LOVE THIS and your most crisp command of language to describe why this is bonkers.

    xxoo

  • Social media is working really well for clothing stores and designers that actually care about women. And at the same time, it warns us about the companies that are just out to take advantage of their customers.

  • I used to shop at My Size until I discovered online shopping a few years ago. I have avoided them since, mainly due to how boring their clothing is but will continue to do so now. I laugh when I see their ads for new season clothes and it is usually the same thing they released the year before but in a different colour.
    Every time I walk past the store near me it is empty-I guess they are too busy thinking up witty comments to try producing clothes women may actually want to wear.

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