While shopping at Zara, Ann Taylor, and Cynthia Rowley, I have discovered that my size varies greatly depending on where I buy my clothes. How can it be that standard sizing isn’t standard at all?
The main problem is that standards are rarely followed when it comes to size. For instance, a women who measures 35-25-36 is believed to be an “XS;” but who has these exact measurements? Maybe this standard exists, but brands often don’t pay attention to it.
So-called “vanity sizing” has made shopping even more confusing. Many brands have changed their measurements to make women feel better about their size, so that those who previously wore a 12 can now wear a 10, or even an 8.
Unreliable size charts are the main reason I don’t like to shop online. Even free shipping and returns don’t make the online shopping experience more appealing. I don’t want to spend hours searching for the item and waiting for it to be delivered, just to find out that it doesn’t fit. Even though the fashion industry has discovered the fast-growing world of e-commerce, it still hasn’t invested enough money to enhance the online shopping experience. That’s why I have little hope of a standardized size chart anytime soon.
E-retailers should look for other solutions when it comes to solving the problem of fit. Canadian company Me-Ality addresses the issue by setting up size-matching kiosks in malls around the United States.
After a free 30-second full-body scan, Me-Ality identifies the fit, style, design, and cut that best matches an individual’s measurements.
Me-Ality then produces a personalized shopping guide with recommendations about the best sizes to buy from over 150 participating brands.
The size-matching kiosks are located in large department stores to help customers find best-matched items through the store’s inventory. Clearly, this technology is perfect for online shopping. The only downside is location–as of yet, there are only a few kiosks in or around L.A., New York, and Washington, D.C.; however the company hopes to expand.
The technology exists; the next step is to make it accessible to everyone. Large retailers and online stores would greatly benefit from partnering with Me-Ality so that customers can easily find their best fit in any brand.