Clothing Retailer H&M Shamed on Facebook for ‘Unrealistically Small’ Sizes

Ruth Clemens‎/Facebook
Ruth Clemens‎/Facebook

LEEDS, England, June 16 (UPI) — A British woman has taken retailer H&M to task for “unrealistically small” clothing in a Facebook posting that went viral and prompted an apology from the company.

Ruth Clemens, 25, a PhD student at Leeds Trinity University, took a photo of herself in the dressing room after not being able to squeeze into a pair of size 16 jeans, despite normally being a size 14 and posted her thoughts on Facebook.

“As I’m sure you’re aware, size 16 is the largest size you stock (apart from in your plus size range, which is very limited in store and does not offer the range of styles for the fashion-conscious that are available in smaller sizes),” Clemens wrote.

“I am not overweight (not that that should matter) and although I’m 5 foot 11 my body is pretty average shape-wise. It’s already difficult enough for me to find clothes that fit well because of my height, why are you making jeans that are unrealistically small?,” she wondered.

“Am I too fat for your everyday range? Should I just accept that accessible and affordable high street and on-trend fashion isn’t for people like me?”

Clemens posting has been shared more than 10,000 times, with at least 8,000 comments from customers — male and female — who had similar experiences.

The Swedish company took heavy criticism last year for mannequins in their U.K. stores that had 23.5 inches, despite the average woman’s waist measurement is 34 inches.

An H&M spokesperson responded in the comments section of Clemons’ Facebook posting: “We are sorry to hear about your experience in store recently,” she said. “We always want our customers to have an enjoyable time when shopping in store and to leave feeling confident in themselves. At H&M we make clothing for all our stores around the world, so the sizing can vary depending on the style, cut and fabric. We value all feedback and will take on board the points you and other customers have raised.”