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One Big Fat Problem for These Three Retailers


Black Friday weekend is just a couple days away and like many Americans you simply can’t help yourself. You’re gonna go to the mall no matter how crowded it is. Let me give you a tip to save you some time. There are three stores in that mall where the average American shopper isn't welcome.

Breakout did a little digging and found some startling information about the sizing policies of some pretty popular retailers.

Before we go shopping let's take a look at what we have to work with.

According to the Centers for Disease Control here he is: just under 5 foot 10 inches, weighing at 195 pounds and sporting a nearly 40 inch waist. THIS is the average American male.  Call it an even 200 pounds after the Thanksgiving turkey.

Stop laughing, ladies. The CDC says you're 5-4, 166 pounds with a 37.5 inch waist. Let's just say we're not ready for swimsuit season.

Now it's time to hit the mall. To be honest we could probably use the exercise. Breakout used online sizing charts of three popular retailers and looked at the largest waist, chest and inseam sizes offered at them to build models of the largest possible customer. 

J. Crew

We found that the store is a bit more generous when it comes to gentlemen. 

Mens waist sizes max out at about 42 inches and women at 34.5 inches. That means men can be pretty hefty but women should be on the skinny side of normal unless they want to spend a long time in the fitting room.

So while the guys should be able to find some comfy clothes, women may have a little trouble here.

Lululemon (LULU)

How about the popular athletic apparel company Lululemon?  As it turns out many customers are going to need to buy exercise gear from Lulu's competition before they're in good enough shape to fit in Lulu clothes.

Their mens waist sizes max out at 39 inches and women at 32.5. Both genders might have a little trouble here. And whoever does find their size may experience unusual wear and tear because, as Lulu’s co-founder Chip Wilson recently stated, their clothes don’t work on “some women’s bodies.”  As a rule of thumb, if you can hear your thighs rubbing together when you walk you probably shouldn't bother strolling into a Lululemon. 

Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF)

Lastly we checked out Abercrombie and Fitch. CEO Mike Jeffries has been outspoken about targeting the "cool kids." Based on their size chart cool means skinny.

For men, waistlines max out at just 36 inches and women at 31. That's more than 10% thinner through the middle than the average American. If you're a target teen you can probably find plenty of product marked down but from the looks of Abercrombie's recent sales most folks aren't bothering.

Breakout reached out to all three stores for comment and, at the time of posting, only heard back from Abercrombie & Fitch who said they had no comment at this time.