Aussie sizing isn’t size inclusive according to American living in Aus

An American living in Australia is going viral for revealing how she thinks moving Down Under led to her experiencing “intense” body issues.

Kerrene Taylor originally hails from Seattle, but she’s currently residing in Melbourne, and she said in a TikTok that now has amassed over 300,000 views that moving triggered her into a body image spiral.

“One unexpected side effect of moving to Australia was developing some pretty intense body issues and body checking behaviour … that took me years to work through,” she explained.

Taylor said that the sizing difference in America and Australia did something to her “brain” that she’s now working through in therapy.

“I went from being a solid US size medium to not fitting into clothes in Australia,” she explained.

Taylor said that not being able to find clothes that fit led to her being “triggered” into a full-blown “body spiral”.

Taylor said that what has helped her come to terms with her body is realising that average-sized women in Australia are rarely catered for.

“I think what eventually helped, the average woman in Australia is a (US) size 12-14, and that is often the biggest size that brands are offering,” she said.

A US size 12-14 is our version of a size 16-18 in Australia.

Taylor said that she’s found Australia isn’t a very “size-inclusive” place, and it’s something she’s had to learn to navigate.

“It is not a me problem, it is a fashion industry problem,” she explained.

Women in the comment section were quick to weigh in and share their gripes with shopping in Australia.

One said that the problem with Australia is there’s no size regulation, which creates ongoing issues for women.

“Like you can be a size 12 in one store than a size 14/16 in a different one,” she fumed.

One argued that Australia just uses “different numbers”, so it shouldn’t really be a problem but rather a mindset issue.

“We just use different numbers than the US, same as the UK. Same measurements, different number,” she argued.

Taylor replied, though, and said it wasn’t about the numbers but rather about where the sizing stops in Australia.

“Yes, but our non-plus size range in the US goes up to AU20 vs. most Australian brands only go up to AU14,” she clarified.

One Aussie shared that she was so used to non-inclusive sizing in Australia that she almost fainted when shopping in America.

“I almost fainted the first time I went to the US and found that all the brands like Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, and Hilfiger were inclusive but not in Australia,” she explained.

While another said that she found the lack of size-inclusive clothing in Australia speaks to how rampant diet culture is.

“Also, how normalised diet culture is here. Like in my office, every woman is constantly talking about losing weight and watching what they eat,” she pointed out.

Meanwhile, a woman revealed that her Canadian partner is forever “shocked” that she finds it so hard to find clothing options in Australia.

“I’m an Australian 16-20 and have struggled with this forever. My Canadian partner was so shocked about our sizing.”

An ex-retail employee shared that women find it so hard to shop in Australia as well because often stores don’t carry much stock of larger sizes.

“I used to work retail. We’d get 1x 6&14, 2×8, 12,14, 4×10 and 1×16 if we were lucky,” she revealed.

Another called the lack of sizing inclusivity in Australia “ridiculous” and pointed out that the average size is the largest in most stories.

The sizing issue in Australia is often discussed online. Recently, influencer Brittney Lee Saunders, who owns the size-inclusive clothing line Fayt, explained why she decided to have a fuller size range on The Life Uncut podcast.

“The average sized woman in Australia is between 14 and 16. Some stores have an extended size range, but it’s just a little section in their shop,” she said.

She added that plenty of brands stick to what they call non-inclusive “straight sizing” or will only offer their extended size range online.

“What is that saying?” she asked.

Saunders said that, while she knows retailers say there’s simply no demand for extended sizing, she said that isn’t the case.

“We are living proof that the demand is sizing.”

Psychologist Carly Dober explained that women not being able to fit into clothing sizes does have a big impact on them.

“The impact can be very significant, it can make women feel ashamed, guilty, excluded, and abnormal,” she told news.com.au.

“The insidious message that is internalised is ‘your size and body are not welcome here’. Over time, this can trigger and exacerbate existing disordered eating symptoms and behaviours and other mental illnesses.

“Women can feel like they don’t fit in, and can’t relate to those in their lives who are able to walk into most or many stores and to find what they need when they need it.”

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