Blogust 2019: The Series, Overexposed: A Self-Love Project.

Overexposed: “Plus-Sized, My Ass.”

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I love shopping for new clothes. What person doesn’t?

I love looking forward to getting a new piece of clothing and having it in my wardrobe and just having that boost of confidence once I put it on. I also love the compliments I get every now and then from people asking me where I got my outfit from. I’ve never been one to be called a “fashionista”, I just wear what I like and that makes me feel as comfortable as possible. Of course, being a fat girl like me, it takes a couple of strikeouts to finally find something that fits.

Hi, my name is Liz, and I’m too fat to shop at the “trendy” clothing stores most people do.

I started to really get into clothes when I was a freshman in college; I now had some money in my pocket from school and I was in desperate need of a revamp in wardrobe. Prior to college, I don’t even remember where I got most of my clothes from, but I knew that I found a gold mine when I looked up the plus-sized section at Forever 21.

As a 19-year-old, Forever 21 was my shit. I browsed the website like there was no tomorrow and it seemed like I always bought something every week from them; I kid you not. Every week, I had a yellow Forever 21 bag stuck inside my mailbox, and just like that, my wardrobe was completely Forever 21’d out. Going into my sophomore year in college, the endless Forever 21 outfits continued.

Until I turned 21, ironically.

From being a 1X as a freshman to practically squeezing myself in their biggest size by the time I was a junior, something felt really wrong. The clothes weren’t fitting me as well as they were, and I began to receive clothing in their biggest size that still looked like an extra-large at best. I remember holding up a shirt I had just ordered from Forever 21 and simply said, “plus-sized, my ass.”

The “plus-size” models on their website become thinner and thinner until I truly had to question whether or not they were just average weight for their height or actually “plus-sized”. They weren’t your “average models”, but they also weren’t representing the plus-size clothing right either. You either had to be 5’11 and 180 pounds, and girl, I am neither of those things. 

When I officially grew out of their clothing, it hit me pretty hard that yeah, even though I gained 50 pounds after having surgery, I was now even bigger and I now had to find something else to fit me. I’ve tried other trendy plus-size clothing outlets: Torrid, JCPenney, Target; the list goes on and on. I just couldn’t find clothing that I felt cute in and comfortable in: I had to settle for “older women style” clothing that was comfortable, or “cute, age-appropriate” clothing that wasn’t comfortable. It took me (and the plus-size clothing industry) a hell of a long time to finally produce clothes that fit all types of body shapes. Most of my wardrobe is actually from a notorious “old lady” catalog which is another story for a different day.

My point being is that being fat shouldn’t be punishable, or a consequence when you’re shopping for clothes. Trendy and cute isn’t exclusive to average-weight people in this world, and not all older women are a 3x and 4x in clothing sizes, sweetheart. We are diverse, and we would like some diversity in our clothing! Not everything has to be for a body of a “thinner fat person” or just an average person, we FAT FATS EXIST!

It’s taken some waiting and research to finally find clothes that are my style, my size, and that makes me feel confident again. Finding clothes that are cute and that fit me was one of the major reasons why I chose to wear dresses and skirts this summer without feeling like I was too fat for them. Never in a million years did I think I was actually going to fall in love with myself in the clothes that I now wear.

At 25, it took years to finally feel like younger, fat girls are now seen in clothing brands. From the last I checked, Forever 21 does now carry a 4X in a couple of their pieces, but man, Forever 21 is canceled after this incident happened a couple of weeks ago.

Wear your clothes proudly, and feel fucking cute in them too!

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