Inconsistencies in women’s jean sizes

Many women enjoy shopping. However when it comes to jeans excitment quckily turns to stress.

It is not a walk in the park to find true sizes. Shopping for clothing in and of itself can be difficult. Women’s jeans are measured differently than men’s, sizing systems fluctuate from store to store, and different style jeans carry different measurements.

Why is it that women’s clothing sizes do not follow the same format as men’s? Men’s pants are measured in two ways; size of waist and length of the inseam. Carrying this over to women’s pants, possibly with the addition of a hip measurement, would allow for properly fitting pants for women of all body types. 

Women’s jeans are sized in even numbers typically zero through twenty-two. The idea behind this was to create a system where women can get jeans that properly fit them based on the measurement of their hips, waist and inseam. However, it does not make finding a true fit any easier.

“I think the method was invented so that it could be more inclusive for all women of different sizes so that it would be easier for everyone to find pants that would fit them; however, I still think that this method could be expanded to be more inclusive for even more body types,” junior Mackenzie Carley said.

A variety of stores have established a unique scale that they use to distinguish their sizes. This scale varies from store to store.

“One store’s definition of a size 4 could be fluctuating from another store’s definition of a size 4,” senior Jordan Mitchell said.

This causes some confusion when shopping for jeans. When it comes to online shopping, some people never know what size to get. According to popular clothing store American Eagle, a size 4 measures 26.5 inches at the waist. The measurements compare exactly to a 3 at Garage, another popular women’s clothing store.

“It is really difficult to find pants that you know are definitely going to fit you and it also makes online shopping really difficult because you never know what size is actually going to fit,” Carley said.

Some stores carry sizes based on different systems. For example, American Eagle only sells their jeans in even number sizes. Stores like Levi’s have combined sizes. A 2/3 in Levi’s jeans have a 26.25-inch waist, which is similar to a 4 at American Eagle and a 3 at Garage.

Many stores offer options like long, short and curvy, but it does not ease the struggle. Some stores are shifting to solve this issue. Abercrombie and Fitch has created a larger variety of options. They now offer extra short and extra-long in addition to a hip measurement. 

As time goes on it will be interesting to see the adjustments of women’s clothing sizes.