When some people are feeling down they indulge in something and sometimes people indulge in retail therapy. As a thick girl, I love retail therapy! Buying a new cute outfit that looks good on me makes me feel good but the search for that outfit can be discouraging. For all my big girls out there I know shopping can be a real drag. Shopping can knock down my self-esteem if I am not too careful. Not finding the right size or clothing not looking the way it is “supposed” to can make us big girls feel like there is something wrong with us. But have no fear, here are some steps so you can have the best shopping experience:
1. DO YOUR MAKEUP AND YOUR HAIR
It sounds ridiculous to do your makeup and hair to go to the mall but when you take the time in your makeup and hair it makes all the difference. When your face is beat and you are having a good hair day you can make any outfit look amazing. Let’s say I think the outfit looks alright on me, if I have my hair and my face done an outfit can go from a 6 to a 9 and I walk out the store happier than I came in
2. WEAR CUTE UNDERWEAR
Wear the type of underwear that when you take off your clothes in the dressing room you can see yourself and say, “I look sexy”. Wear the type of underwear that when you see yourself in the mirror you don’t want to hide but take a second to admire yourself.
3. WEAR SMART UNDERWEAR
Wearing cute underwear and smart underwear are two different things. If you like to hide your belly don’t wear your low-rider underwear but wear the type of underwear that covers up to your belly button. Wear the underwear that fits you best. The type you like to wear with a dress. Let’s say you don’t have smart cute underwear, bring a body shaper with you in your bag. Wear or bring this with you so when you try on these clothes you feel your best.
4. FIND YOUR FELLOW BIG GIRL IN THE STORE
Now don’t go to a random big girl in the store and start asking questions, unless you want to of course but if you see a big girl who works at the store this is your new BFF. If you see a sales associate that has a full figure you know that this girl
1. Buys clothes from this store
2. Knows what clothing items the store has that will compliment the plus size shape
Ask her questions: Do the sizes run big or small? How can I style an outfit? You are not finding your size? Ask her.
5. KNOW YOUR SHAPE
Are you a pear shape, bottom heavy rather than top? Are you an apple shape? Are you an hourglass? I am a pear shape. I know that my bottom is twice the size of my top so I can expect that buying rompers will be difficult. Us big girls are not all shaped the same. Some will have larger breast or larger arms or bellies or butts, that’s fine. Knowing your shape lets you know what style of cut you like your dresses, jeans, shirts, etc. This allows you to be a smart shopper.
6. YOU ARE TOO FLY FOR SOME STORES
You walk into the store and nothing is fitting right or you found something really cute but the largest size you see is a size 10. Take a breath. Many stores do not have our bodies in mind. In America the average dress size is a 16 but design students learn how to design for a size 6. Some stores actually don’t want us wearing their clothes. Athletic clothing line Lululemon has been accused for being sizest and displaying or making large sizes for their customers.
When you walk into a store be prepared that not every store will be a success. Sometimes you will walk into a store and it will be a bust. Know that happens to everyone though, this is not an experience that is unique for thick women. Research the stores that go up to a size 16 and look up the good plus size stores. There is this weird expectation that us thick women only buy clothes online and I know ASOS Curve is great but we can also shop at the store too!