We are all familiar with vanity sizing and how it pretty much ruins any chances of finding clothes that actually fit correctly. Of course, companies do this to sell us more clothing, but the end result ends up being a whole lot of insecurity with a bit of annoyance to complete the picture. But there’s at least one company actively fighting against this, and they found the perfect solution. Get rid of the numbers.
Sizing anxiety is a real thing. By assigning a number to ourselves, we may end up feeling crappy when the number is bigger than we anticipated, even when we know that vanity sizing exists and that the numbers are basically arbitrary. Workout brand Manifesta recognized this problem and vowed to end it, so they changed all their size numbers into… flowers. The brand creator stated that they wanted to get rid of the stigma related to sizes and that’s why they went for a sizing system that didn’t have an “inherent hierarchy”. Of course, it might get a bit complicated to decide if you are a poppy or a lily based on name alone, so their website includes the garment’s measurements to help you choose.
Rachel Blumenfeld created the company in 2011, when she realized that most workout clothes are really not tailored for curvy ladies. No matter their size, truth is that most women with a bit of curves have to constantly readjust their workout gear. She made a line of comfortable exercise clothes, stretchy, breathable, odor-resistant and, above all, tailored for natural curves.
Rachel cares about running a truly “body-positive company” and making exercise accessible for women of every size and shape. We should be working out because we love our bodies and clothing-related anxiety does not help with body issues. This is why she wants to spread the notion that women are not a number and remove all the stigma associated with the size. When buying workout clothes, the important thing should be the fit and comfort, not the arbitrary digit printed on the label.
Flowers were the way Rachel (fun fact: Blumenfeld means “flower field” in German) found to make sizing absolutely neutral. Adjectives, letters and numbers are inherently “ranked” in a way flowers are not. Flowers are just different shapes, no better or worse. Response to this innovative sizing system has been overwhelmingly positive and several women recovering from eating disorders have contacted Rachel to express gratitude.
Here’s hoping that more and more companies catch on. Maybe we can start shopping for jeans by colors, countries or candy? Numbers are boring anyways.