I think it’s pretty commonly recognized that there’s no such thing as “one size fits all.” And yet, the phenomenon persists. There are one size fits all leggings, shirts, hats, socks, and various other articles of clothing. And whether you are very thin, or tend toward the other side of the spectrum, you’ve likely been frustrated by the one size (doesn’t) fit all problem at one point or another in your life. Companies have finally gotten wise and changed the party-line to “one size fits most,” but we all know it means the same thing–these probably won’t fit you.
Recently, I began a search for performance underwear. We all know that cotton is the devil, and so I’ve never worn cotton underwear for running. Unfortunately, however, running “commando” causes me a significant amount of personal chafing (yup, TMI again. Seems to be a trend around here lately). So, I looked around. Oiselle has their “Randies,” at $16 a pop. Googling “athletic underwear” led to lots and lots of results for men, but not as many for women.
And then, I found that Under Armour has a “pure stretch” line of performance, sweat-wicking underwear in 3 different styles and lots of cute colors. And they’re 3 pairs for $30, which is actually a pretty good price. And I have an Under Armour outlet near me, so they were easy for me to get right away rather than buying online and waiting for them to ship. So on Friday, I bought three pairs.
The problem? One size fits most. Or, as their marketing so glibly suggests, “One size fits
all ATHLETES.” Now, I consider myself an athlete. I run three times a week, and usually hit the gym at least one other day a week. I am definitely not overweight. And yet, these underwear DO NOT FIT. Sure, I can pull them up, and they fit over my thighs and butt. But they cut into the fat around my hips and give me the world’s meanest muffin top.
These things are so tight that they actually roll down off of my hips, making the muffin top worse. These underwear are completely useless to me, and therefore a waste of money. Granted, I can return the two pair I didn’t actually wear, but still.
I can lay most of the blame at my own door–I should have known immediately that one size fits most would not apply to me. I’ve fallen into that trap before. But Under Armour has to take some of the rap. What kind of company makes “one size fits most” underwear? I think we all know that most people do not wear the same size anything, let alone underwear. And since underwear occupies such an intimate space, shouldn’t it be the best-fitting, most comfortable article of clothing we put on each day? Shouldn’t it actually come in a variety of sizes to allow optimum fit?
And this is not even touching on the impact that the marketing can have on individuals. If I consider myself an athlete, but don’t fit into these underwear, am I then not truly an athlete? Am I not thin enough? Do I not have enough muscle? It’s unfair to say that these are underwear for athletes if they don’t fit all shapes and sizes. Peoples’ identities of themselves and their own qualifications of the “athlete” title can vary incredibly from person to person. To try and pin that title to a single size of underwear is just plain wrong.
And then, of course, there’s the body image thing. I think we all know what I’m getting at here, so I won’t beat a dead horse. Suffice to say, if an article of clothing is branded “one size fits most,” and you don’t fit into that article of clothing, you are automatically alienated–you are outside of the realm that “most” people occupy. You are different. Too fat or too thin or whatever. And that sucks.
Thankfully, my sense of self-worth does not hinge on fitting into Under Armour’s Pure Stretch underwear. But some people are that sensitive. So listen up, clothing manufacturers–One size fits “most” does not work. And one size fits all is a lie. Please make clothing that people of all shapes, sizes, and athletic abilities can wear and enjoy. This especially goes for sports bras.
How do you feel about “one size fits all” or “one size fits most” clothing?
Any suggestions for comfortable, reasonably priced athletic underwear?