Unisex clothing – a rant

I am in the market for a new jacket.  I want something which could keep me warm at the north pole, weighs no more than a feather and packs down as small as a postage stamp.  I have set my budget accordingly.

One website in and I’m already irritated.

“Our clothing is unisex and made in standard sizes …”

I have dutifully measured myself to find out which of their standard unisex sizes applies.

Based on my height and chest measurement I’m XS, my waist measurement suggests I’m M and if by waist they actually mean waist and hip (their sizing chart does not include hip measurements) then I’m XL.

If I opt for XL to fit around my hips, I will have an extra 8 inches of clearance around my waist and a whopping 11 inches of clearance round my chest.  If I opt for XS, then I run the risk of needing surgery to shave 3 inches from my waist and 11 inches from my hips.

Granted, their website makes it clear that I can contact them to ask them to quote for modifications needed, so it may well be possible to buy a well-fitting jacket from them, but it will come at a premium price with an extended lead time.  At least when I go to Evans or Wiggle I can pay more for my women’s specific kit without begging for the privilege.


This is not Unisex (adj): for both men and women or even Unisex (adj): not distinguished on the basis of sex.  This is Unisex (adj): let’s relabel our men’s range and hope it keeps the women happy.

It doesn’t.



About abradypus

A Bradypus or Sloth am I, I live a life of ease, contented not to do or die but idle as I please; ... [Michael Flanders and Donald Swann]
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3 Responses to Unisex clothing – a rant

  1. runningrara says:

    So with you on this one! As a tall woman with large feet I often have to buy mens/unisex items that are ill fitting. AND why is ladies kit always pink???

    • abradypus says:

      Oooh! I know the answer to that one. “Shrink it and produce it in a range of colours because different people like different things” just isn’t as catchy as “Shrink it and Pink it”

  2. onthelamb says:

    I’m with you as well. My father, who was in retail, is even against S, M, L sizing, as it suits absolutely no-one.

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