Choice has today released a new report outlining the fact that widespread clothing size irregularities and lack of data on the changing shape of Australians highlights the need need for a new National sizing survey.

Despite a heavier population the most recent data collected for the women’s sizing standard was in 1975. With many stores and brands not going beyond a sz14-16

International fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld described his recent H&M range as designed for “slender and slim” people. Melbourne designer Bettina Liano says she makes size 14 clothes but “they just don’t sell”.

Some fashion designers admit they are reluctant in some cases to make their labels available in larger sizes. The industry body, Council of the Textile and Fashion Industries Australia (TFIA), says this policy can send negative body image messages to younger consumers.

“Vanity sizing” is also a well-known practice in the $2.8 billion dollar industry, with generous sizes designed to entice the consumer into buying the garment because they feel flattered to fit into a size smaller than their usual one.

Sizing irregularity is also affecting the online shopping market with retailers saying Australia lags behind the United States, United Kingdom and Europe in this area.

“How can people confidently buy online when even if you’re physically standing in a shop you can’t be certain what size will fit you?” said CHOICE spokeswoman Elise Davidson.

CHOICE says men generally have it better than women when it comes to clothes shopping because their clothing is generally measured using specific waist and neck measurements in inches. There is a standard for children’s clothing sizes currently used in Australia.

CHOICE journalist, Kate Browne set out to discover just how big the difference in sizing is between some popular Women\’s clothing brands. Watch the video to see how she fared on her shopping trip.

Read the full report at Choice.

What are your thoughts, do you think we need a new sizing survey?

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