Have you ever heard of Slink magazine? Me neither, but apparently it’s the Holy Grail. It appears to be a fashion magazine which actually uses and styles for plus size women without it merely being some annual concession before going back to their regularly scheduled size zeros.
You can check out the magazine here at this link. I’ve not had a chance to read an issue myself yet, but came across it in an intriguing interview with its editor which you can read here. Both the interview and then the comments section touch on an issue I’ve already blogged about – the difficulty of language when describing body shapes and how some words immediately scream “euphemism for fat” – but what particularly struck me was her frustration in getting advertisers and brands on board. Given that the average UK dress size is a 16 and that there is a… God, why does every word I can think of for this sound like a bad size pun… let’s call it a significant market for plus sizes, it seems remarkable that retailers are so willing to ignore it. She notes that even cosmetics brands (which of course have no relation to size) or clothing brands which go well up into the plus sizes have been reluctant to work with the magazine.
Am I surprised? Sadly I’m not. I’ve talked enough about the poor perception of bigger sizes. It can’t be much of a shock that people who want to sell stuff are scared of the association, even when these women form part of their potential customer base. Still I consider the existence of a magazine like Slink a cause for celebration, though I’ll reserve judgment on its quality until I’ve actually read it! It’s very gratifying to see somebody representing us in the media and acknowledging that we plus sizes are interested in more than shapeless sacks and granny pants. It might take a little more thought but we can look good in clothes too!