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Here's The Body-Positive Reason ModCloth Ditched Their "Plus" Section

The retailer hopes to provide a more inclusive shopping experience.

Cute clothing and accessories destination ModCloth announced today that it is removing a separate "Plus" section from its website in an effort to be more inclusive.

Courtesy ModCloth

ModCloth founder Susan Koger exclusively tells BuzzFeed Life that the decision results from customer feedback, researching shoppers' needs, and considering her own shopping experiences.

While about half of the women ModCloth surveyed in a recent study were averse to the term "plus-size," Koger says she was also largely inspired by women's reactions to the company's recent pop-up shops in San Francisco and Los Angeles.
modcloth.com

While about half of the women ModCloth surveyed in a recent study were averse to the term "plus-size," Koger says she was also largely inspired by women's reactions to the company's recent pop-up shops in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

"Seeing in real life how excited customers were that about 95% of our clothing was available in a full range of sizes [XS–4X] made us not want to relegate anyone to a different section based on size, and we wanted to reflect that on the site, too."

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It's a personal issue for Koger as well, who acknowledges her own struggles with body image.

"I can empathize with going shopping and feeling like I'm not enough," she tells BuzzFeed Life.

ModCloth's thinking is in line with proponents of the #DropThePlus movement, as well as designers like Melissa McCarthy, who insisted that all sizes of her Seven7 line (4–28) be placed together in the same area of stockists' stores.

Gerardo Mora / Getty Images

While ModCloth has removed the "Plus" section from its homepage and other "plus"-oriented language from its site, Koger says they still want to make shopping by size easy.

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Shoppers will still be able to search by size if they wish, either via a sidebar to the left side of each category page (i.e., dresses)...

... or via an "extended sizes" drop-down menu option accessible under each category on ModCloth's homepage.

The point of this, Koger tells BuzzFeed Life, is to ensure convenience while prioritizing what styles women are looking for over what size they wear — and that ideally in the future, the "extended" category will include petite, tall, and XXS options.
modcloth.com

The point of this, Koger tells BuzzFeed Life, is to ensure convenience while prioritizing what styles women are looking for over what size they wear — and that ideally in the future, the "extended" category will include petite, tall, and XXS options.

While the move is part of ModCloth's longstanding inclusive ethos, it's also good business. Koger tells BuzzFeed Life that extended-size clothing (which ModCloth began stocking in 2013) continues to be their fastest-growing sales category.

"There's an outdated notion that the plus consumer won't spend money on herself, and when she does, it won't be trendy or stylish," she says. "I'm sure certain retailers have a fear of turning off straight-size customers by welcoming customers who wear extended sizes, but that's not true from what we've seen."
blog.modcloth.com

"There's an outdated notion that the plus consumer won't spend money on herself, and when she does, it won't be trendy or stylish," she says. "I'm sure certain retailers have a fear of turning off straight-size customers by welcoming customers who wear extended sizes, but that's not true from what we've seen."

As such, Koger says ModCloth is helping other brands they work with to serve a wider range of customers. Their in-house team collaborates with small vendors to discuss the logistics of making well-fitting clothing for women size 16 and above.

"We want to spark a change in the industry," Koger says, "and teaching vendors those skills is good for their business, and women who wear extended sizes, too."
blog.modcloth.com

"We want to spark a change in the industry," Koger says, "and teaching vendors those skills is good for their business, and women who wear extended sizes, too."

"Shopping is an experience that tears a lot of people down, but we want to make it an uplifting one," she says. "It makes us wonder, why aren't more people in the industry doing this?"

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  1. What do you think of ModCloth removing "plus" language from their website?

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    It's great! The more inclusive they can be, the better.
    Correct
    Incorrect
    It's a nice gesture, but it might just confuse people.
    Correct
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    I get the idea, but not the execution. I'll tell you in the comments what they should do instead.
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    I don't like it at all. It was fine before.
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What do you think of ModCloth removing "plus" language from their website?
  1.  
    vote votes
    It's great! The more inclusive they can be, the better.
  2.  
    vote votes
    It's a nice gesture, but it might just confuse people.
  3.  
    vote votes
    I get the idea, but not the execution. I'll tell you in the comments what they should do instead.
  4.  
    vote votes
    I don't like it at all. It was fine before.
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