I wanted to write this post now more than ever because there is a misconception that tighter clothing is worn mainly in warmer seasons, which isn’t the case. When it’s colder outside people actually tend to move towards one of two methods to stay warm: One, wear multiple thinner layers. Or two, wear less but thicker, bigger jackets, sweatpants, socks, etc. What’s concerning to us at Gotapparel is that the people that wear thinner layers usually have tighter base layers and have more weight from their clothes on them. By tight, I mean not necessarily that a person is unable to move or breathe, but that they are uncomfortable enough to notice that there is something that feels constricted.
We believe that comfort is not an added bonus. It’s not for your lazy days or when you feel too ‘something’ to put in the effort. Comfort is a necessity. It is absolutely vital to your health. Skinny Jeans, spanx, compression tops, tight ties and cuffs are all seriously setting you up for health issues. And I’m not just talking about the trauma of embarrassing outfits; I’m talking permanent nerve damage, digestion problems, poor circulation, reproductive issues and skin infections.
You might think, “But REALLY, how likely is it that these things actually happen? What proof do you have that this happens, and if it does, how common is it?”
Well, according to multiple doctors and countless medical reports, this is actually pretty common. So much so that in the American Medical Association journal, Dr. Octavio Bessa, a gastroenterologist at Stanford, said that 80% of patients
that came in with abdominal pain or heartburn wore pants that were at least 3 inches smaller than their waist. He also warned that too tight pants may aggravate an “otherwise silent abdominal hernia”. There has been a significant rise with the trend of skinny jeans in the diagnosis of Meralgia Paresthetica, which is compression of the nerve running from the pelvis to the outer thigh. This generally causes sensations of numbness, burning and tingling in your legs. Many people, myself included, notice that their feet and legs below their knees get cold very easily. In time, this could result in permanent nerve damage and impact your walking ability.
And those extra fitted tops meant to accentuate and/or minimize your physique? According to a study at Cornell University, 7 in 10 men buy dress shirts with collars too small for them. What does this affect? In the British Journal of Ophthalmology, tight collars and ties can increase the risk of serious eye disease. Because of the constriction, blood flow to the brain is restricted, resulting in headaches, blurred vision, dizziness and tension in the back and shoulders. Research shows that this type of constriction variably can increase the chances of a stroke.
Do you know how common it is for people with breasts to have back and shoulder pain? VERY. And it’s not even people with bigger sizes anymore, albeit they are generally more affected, it’s smaller sizes too! The lack of support, the too small band sizes, the too large cup sizes, all impact the amount of stress put on the spine. The fabric and mismatched sizes often also result in scarring, bruising and tenderness, accelerated sagging and stretch marks. Because your skin is forced to stretch and stay that way for extended amounts of time, it becomes increasingly more sensitive.
I mean, think about your own experiences! How many times have you all worn pants, bras, shirts, dresses, or even socks that were too tight? And what happened? You felt uncomfortable didn’t you? Sometimes the pain lasted way after you changed out of those clothes too, right? Why is it that there are so many jokes about being ‘done for the day’ when you change out of your clothes into your ‘home clothes’. Why are so many of us uncomfortable in the clothes we wear?
Disclaimer: We don’t mean to rain on anyone’s fashion choices or instigate irrelevant discussions about why a certain ‘type’ of dressing is better than the other. That’s not what this post is about.
Just that as thread connoisseurs, it comes as no surprise to us how impactful the size of your clothes can be. The multiple factors that clothing plays in your health, both mental and physical are real. Clothing that is too fitted or too unsupportive has risks and negative impacts, which is why I wanted to write this post because mainstream knowledge about health hardly mentions clothes. The fact that a huge number of people feel uncomfortable in the clothes they wear because of the fit is a huge concern. We are critical of the fact that ‘standard sizes’ are designed for a certain body type and that the idea that nothing feels as good as looking good. We believe that the two can and should go together. At Gotapparel we believe you deserve to know everything there is to know about your clothes, and we are dedicated to bringing you honest, insightful and relevant information that will help you make informed choices.
So please, disassociate yourself from all the clothes in your closet that make you feel stifled and uncomfortable. Like our last blog post detailed, there are (some) methods you can use to find the style you like, with the fit you need at prices your wallet can appreciate. We will continue to share the things we’ve learned following the yellow knit road and hopefully, you all will stay threaded comfortably because of it.