J. Crew Is Now Selling Size 000, But Why?

J. Crew Is Now Selling Size 000, But Why?Get ready for yet another reason you will not feel like walking into a J. Crew store this year: the retailer is now offering a size 000. According to the J. Crew sizing chart, a triple 000 is equivalent to a 23-inch waist. Fashion blogger Capitol Hill Style observes that it may not be quite as small as it sounds; in fact, it could be another deep dive into the absurd realm of vanity sizing:

Vanity sizing is based on the misguided notion that you need to lie to women in order to sell clothing.  It promulgates the damaging concept that self-worth is directly proportional to clothing-tag size.  And negatively effects girls’ feelings about their bodies before they’re mature enough to know that they’re defined by more than a number assigned to them by a clothing company.

Now, J.Crew has jumped the shark on a rocketship and launched a size 000/XXXS.  Defenders argue that this is a great thing for petite women, but J.Crew already has a petites line that offers a size 00.

I am by no means saying that J. Crew, nor any other brand, should simply not offer smaller sizes. There are millions of naturally thin and petite women who have difficulty finding sizes; I have at least three friends who regularly shop at children’s stores because adult ones never carry sizing that is small enough for them. (If you’re rolling your eyes and mumbling about first world problems, just imagine having to walk into Limited Too every time you want jeans.) But the sizing label of “000″ is unnecessary.

There’s an idealization of the size 0 in pro-eating disorder communities. (I would link to a couple sites that exemplify this obsession, but I imagine I would have potentially found that triggering in the past to accidentally click as a reader, and I am presumably not the only one.) It signifies the desire to be so small, you can simply disappear, be nothing, fade into zero-ness. This idea may sound ludicrous to those who have never had an eating disorder, but for many people with severe body image issues, it is the ultimate goal. J. Crew itself is already guilty of photoshopping an already-thin model into being thinner, literally subtracting from her body so she has a wider thigh gap; they don’t need to create a size that is as close to negative sizing as one can get to that list.

And besides the aforementioned implications of a size 000, vanity sizing is idiotic in and of itself. Not only does it imply that being thinner is better–a notion that leads to negative self image issues and ill-fitting clothing choices–it also screws up the whole purpose of standardized sizing systems. It is exhausting to be unable to determine what size you are because at J. Crew, you’re a 6 while at the Gap, you’re a 4 and at H&M, you’re a 12 or 2 depending on how the factory was feeling that day. Do not flatter us. We do not need flattering in that way. Just give us easy, standardized sizing and be done with it, please.

On the bright side, this is just more fuel for the argument of why you should not buy a $400 pair of “Pixie pants.”

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    • Liz Grierson

      Yep, if you take a size 12 and label it an 8 so that people feel good about themselves fitting into an 8 and buy that thing… I guess the size 2s have to become 000. We’re a pack of idiots.

    • simoneutecht

      The label is inside the clothes so who cares what the number is as long as it fits

    • Caitlin

      I wear a 27 in jeans and wear a 0 in their shorts- their apparel runs big. Either they offer a 000 or size their clothing a bit more accurately- there are a heck of a lot of women smaller than me who would like to buy their clothes and have them fit.

    • Heather C

      Maybe clothing sizes should be about body measurements, like jeans? i.e. 34″ bust, 28×30″ pants

    • Megan

      Shopping at j.crew is always so confusing for me! I am typically a 00, but there I can be a 2-4! I wish women’s sizes could just be the same everywhere, or be based on measurements like men’s pants are. oy!

      • Sarah

        Really? That’s so odd because I find their clothes to be cut larger than normal. I wear a size 4 bottoms but there I have to wear a 2 or 0.

    • JSwen

      Yes! Give us waist and inseam, and a general shape of curvy, straight, and relaxed for different hip proportions.

      • Samantha Escobar

        Yes, please. I hate being a size 12 in some stores and a size 8 in others because then if I order online–tada! Nothing effing fits.

    • Lily Savage

      I have friends who have a hard time shopping too, I love Jcrew even though I feel like it caters to the super tall and skinny, and I totally agree with you, they need to figure out a different name. I can just see girls/women aspiring to fit in a 000 and it makes me a little nervous.

    • DebMoore

      Yes it is frustrating to be a 37 year old women and only be able to shop in the Jr department! And yeah everyone tells me “I should be so lucky” but the thing is I am an accountant/mother/37 I don’t want to wear kids clothes! It’s hard to be taken seriously when I have 17 years of tax experience but people think I am a kid. And due to sizes being lowered I average a size 0 at most stores. That’s not even a size!
      The other day I took out a skirt I have had for about 15 years that was a hand me down from my sister-in-law (so who knows how old this skirt really is) it’s a size 7 and a little tight. I showed my husband and laughed about how now I am a size 0 and how crazy sizing has gotten over the past 20 years!

    • FemelleChevalier

      Yep. Being able to NOT buy kid’s clothes out of necessity is what I like about my home country. I feel like an adult.

    • tempura-san

      I’ve been living outside the US for about 10 years and it’s gotten to the point where I don’t even KNOW my size anymore. Whenever I’m back and want to pick up some cheapie basics at Target or Kohls or even JCrew (although…not cheapie) it’s a freaking comedy.

      I’m petite and based on their 24-inch waist thing, I supposed I would qualify for the 000 in JCrew which…is absurd. Because I’m not anywhere close to a size 000 in countries with more accurate sizing or even US sizing a couple years ago. My older sister passed me down a lovely white brocade dress she wore to her HS graduation in 1998. Outside of getting it chopped at the hem, it fits well – as a six.

      I’d honestly love to walk into a store and know I’m a size six (or a size 10 or 4 or 2 or triple-flipping-000) then bounce from retailer to retailer having to try three sizes up and down in order to find well-fitting clothes. Knock it off already, you’re insulting our intelligence.