There is no way on earth I’m a size 6, despite the fact that my Not Your Daughter’s Jeans and Club Monaco summer pants bear a label that says I am. Blame it on a sly marketing technique called vanity sizing. That’s when clothing manufacturers cheat a bit by lowering the size number to make buyers feel better and more likely to purchase. At the present time I weigh 10-15 lbs. more than I did in my heyday yet I’m two sizes smaller than 30 years ago? Math is definitely not my strong suit (I’m an extreme right-brainer; the left side is barely functional) but even I know that the numbers do not compute.
Back when I weighed what I wish I weighed now I consistently wore size 8 or 10. Now that I’m older, fatter and have no waistline whatsoever, there is no way in hell I legitimately qualify to wear size 6 despite what the labels say. And after a lifetime of being a Medium (M) fit on top, one clothing designer has decreed I’m an Extra Small (XS). The only thing that has grown in size is my bra and bra sizes are so notoriously baffling no one relies on them anyway. My shoes are still size 7 and probably always will be until I need extra room for industrial strength orthotics to keep me motoring. But then, I’ve never actually tried on a Jimmy Choo or Manolo Blahnik—maybe I’d be a dainty size 5.
Vanity sizing is right up there with “sell the sizzle not the steak”. Now that I’m older and perhaps have a few more bucks to spend on clothing, the designers are marketing to my desire to feel good and are regularly trimming my size tag to inflate my self-image. I know I’m not really a true size 6 but if I keep paying more for the higher-end clothing names someday I might believe it. There’s another old marketing adage that says “Perception is reality”. I’ll bet if I opted for even more expensive lines, I’d be a size 2. How could I resist? In fact, buying more expensive clothes in fake teeny tiny sizes might ultimately be cheaper than all the money we waste on gym memberships, weight loss books, diet plans, and low-cal empty foods. And we’d probably look better too. Saving enough money to fit into a Stella McCartney or Armani Size O sounds like a goal worth striving for. And I’d never again have to say no to dessert.
The bottom line? Wear only what fits your bottom perfectly. Disregard the numbers. They lie.