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When Activewear Actually Cares About Plus Size

I’ve spoken about getting more active on my instagram as of late, but wanted to touch back here with what I am wearing.

It boggles my mind that there are athletic clothing companies that do not offer plus sizes. I’m looking at you fat phobic Lulu Lemon! It’s a strange place to be in…to be fat and want to work out, to be surrounded by a culture that tells me that I should workout because being fat is wrong, BUT not having a company to clothe me for said workout. Apparently, I shouldn’t expect to look good working out. That privilege is reserved for sizes 00 to 10.

I had gotten so used to this double standard that when a company came along that actually sized up to a 20, I didn’t truly trust it. Brands say they go up to a 20 or say they are plus size, but it’s only half true. The 3x is an actual size 14 or only a small fraction of their line is plus. Out of 20 available leggings, 2 come in XXL. However, and this is a big however, this is not the case with Girlfriend.

This company. Not only do they make a pant that is thick, but stretchy, comes in a bevy of colors that are stunning, makes sizes up to a 20, and doesn’t roll down the tummy, BUT everything is made from recycled plastic bottles. They are doing right by both fat people AND the earth. As an added bonus, these leggings come in 3 lenghts (28″, 23″, and 19″) and 2 thicknesses (compression and lite).

Also, let the record show that I have no idea how people on the beach do these photoshoots. It has to take geniuses to run and smile and not look like a complete fool.

Photography by David Schubert

Topanga Sports Bra: Girlfriend Collective | High Rise Legging in 3 lenghts: Girlfriend Collective

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Utilitarian Fashion

Size inclusivity, thank G, is having a surge across the fashion world. More and more companies are including larger sizes in their inventory (as they should) and plus size people are able to shop with more choices than ever before.

What my 16yo self would have given to shop the stores we have today. I remember wandering into what felt like the only store available to me at the time, Lane Bryant. For the first time ever in my fat teenage life, I could pull clothing from a rack and it would fit. That feeling of belonging ran deep through my size 20 body. I knew that I had been missing out on a big part of teenage hood and it felt bad. I felt bad. I felt that I was a mistake and my body was a constantly fixable thing.

Lemme tell you, this body is not just here to diet then die. Fuuuuuck that. Through years and YEARS of self doubt and even deeper self hate, I have reached such a great place of self acceptance. Part of that is knowing it is ok to demand that people who make clothes include plus size people in the conversation.

Madewell has become one of those clothiers who has begun branching out into plus sizes. I know that the utilitarian trend is not for everyone and I myself cannot make all of it work for me, but this jumpsuit <3. This bad boy I love. I’m so into the wide, cropped leg…mainly because I think I have great ankles. It fits really well and even though I have a short torso, this feels long enough for even the longest of people. I know this jumpsuit is a slight risk because with the wrong pairings I just look ready to go fix my car, but adding the mule worked perfectly to keep it just dressy enough. It also comes in cream, but that was just too big of a risk for me. Not a fashion risk, a cleaning risk.

Photography by Gina Fippin

Madewell Wide Leg Jumpsuit: Nordstrom | Beige low heel Mules (similar): Nordstrom | Classic White Bodysuit: Good American | My most favorite earrings: Annie Costello Brown