A memo to any companies selling “plus-sized” garments: this is a task best undertaken with sensitivity and common sense. Or, if that’s too tricky to figure out, just do the opposite of everything Wish.com did and you should be fine.
Wish, a clothing retail app notorious for slow shipping speeds and shoddy materials, caught the wrath of the Internet recently when Twitter users noticed something odd about the way it was marketing plus-sized tights. Instead of showing a plus-sized model wearing the tights, like a normal company would, Wish decided to go in a different direction: showing how big and roomy the tights are by putting them on thinner models.
Photo Credit: Wish.com
To make matters worse and/or weirder, it appears Wish didn’t take the photos themselves, but actually stole them from an entirely different ad campaign. The photos originate from an ad campaign for “Magical Tights,” an entirely different line of hosiery that feature extreme flexibility and stretchiness–and, worst of all, are not marketed as plus-sized. So apparently, the fine folks over at Wish heard about Magical Tights, and thought, “Hey! I bet we could also sell these as plus-sized clothes!”
The people of Twitter weren’t impressed. This person pointed out the absurdity of the whole situation.
I love figuring out my size by conceptualizing how many skinny people will fit in my clothes https://t.co/671yBwB1Sq
— molly (@mollyxflanagan) December 10, 2017
This Twitter user explained why the ads aren’t just offensive, they also make no sense.
it would have been so much easier to hire plus size models for this. it’s an unrealistic advertisement as well because there is no indicator of how it looks on a plus size body. it’s inefficient as well as distasteful.
— emily angelica (@existentiaIly) December 9, 2017
And this person imagined how the Wish executives came up with their ad campaign.
“instead of showing what the tights will look like on plus size bodies, let’s put them on size two women in an entirely unhelpful way.”
“you’re a goddamn genius Jim. Have a promotion.” https://t.co/daWynjJtSl
— nick carragay (@local_mistake) December 10, 2017
So far, Wish has not responded to the criticism, and the photos remain on their website.
Society still has a long way to go when it comes to inclusivity. At the very least, let’s hope Wish’s screwup serves as a cautionary tale of how NOT to approach body-positivity.