One Size Fits Small

Brandy Melville’s lack of inclusion is harming the youth


SOPA images

Brandy Melville storefront located in the city. The photo features its branding.

Tall and thin, tan and blonde, she poses in her trendy clothes for her thousands of Instagram followers. She is glowing. She is idolized. She is who our society has deemed the image of perfection. She is the Brandy Melville girl.

Brandy Melville is a clothing brand founded in Italy that moved to the United States in 2009 and now has 27 locations across America and Canada, according to The company has utilized social media to spread its brand worldwide, but its use of social media is not the only strategy giving this new brand publicity. Brandy Melville only stocks one size: extra small. Their constricting sizing policies pique the interest of many young girls. The reason that Brandy Melville’s “one size fits most” theory is working is because they have made their brand feel private.

“It’s an exclusivity thing: Congratulations, you fit in the clothes! Join the club,” fashion blogger Justina Sharp said, according to “There will always be the girls who will try to squeeze into it. They’ll do whatever they can to fit in Brandy Melville.”

When teenagers are surrounded by pictures of unattainable looks, their view of themselves becomes skewed. They start to think that they have to change themselves to look like “the Brandy Melville girl” in order to be accepted. Brandy Melville is motivating girls to lose weight in order to sell clothes. That is not a responsible business practice. Every 62 minutes a person dies from an eating disorder, according to Brandy Melville should be motivating girls to accept themselves how they are and love others no matter their size.

“Brandy, I am pleased to announce that because of you I have lost eight pounds in only two weeks,” Instagram user @madilynperkins said. “I was motivated by Brandy.”

In 2020, girls are finally starting to gain more confidence and feel more comfortable with the bodies they have. However, brands like Brandy Melville are limiting that progress. Responsible clothing brands should be using the platform that they have to help girls and boys be proud of who they are. Such a popular clothing brand should not deliberately target an impressionable demographic in order to turn a profit.

“[Teens are] getting a really toxic message of what makes them worthy,” co-founder of the Girls Leadership Institute Rachel Simmons said, according to “All that matters is your body type.”

According to a YouTube video by Lily Chee, Brandy Melville stores hire girls 14 through 25 that are able to fit in the clothes. This makes sense because brands want their employees to represent their company while hired. However, before hiring an employee, an interviewer will look at a prospective employee’s Instagram and take a picture of her outfits in order to see what styles teenagers are drawn to. Only if she has enough followers and she is stylish enough will she be hired. Once hired, the employees will get pictures taken of their outfits every time they come into work. Many speculate the corporation takes pictures to get ideas of what teenagers like to wear and what is popular so they can recreate it. Brandy Melville also takes time out of the day to let workers go out and have photoshoots in their clothes. Employees are able to choose whatever they want to wear, have their picture taken, then take all the clothes they wore home for free. Girls are being bribed to work at Brandy Melville, buy their clothes and lose weight.

“Brandy Melville defines one kind of beauty as the only kind of beauty,” senior Kate Boyd said. “They push for young girls to buy their clothes in hopes to be the ‘chill, laid back girl that everyone likes’ that is portrayed in their ads. This toxic store has girls questioning their body types and feeling like they need to change themselves to fit a certain standard that they define as beautiful.”

To add to the exclusivity, Brandy Melville has a complete lack of diversity. On the Brandy Melville Instagram, 96 posts were made since the beginning of the year and only three included a person of color. That is 3.1% of the pictures. They are deliberately discriminating and just advertising to a niche market. Yet, this brand is still growing. They are still making clothes.

“Brandy Melville is money hungry and takes advantage of the low costs by only producing one size,” Boyd said. “They don’t care about their customers. Brandy Melville chooses to stay exclusive and not open up to all sizes because currently, they are a niche company that realizes they cannot compete with other stores who are truly inclusive to all types of beauty.”

While the clothes make Brandy Melville look trendy and new, the fact is this is an old fashioned brand with old fashioned ideals, only finding beauty in girls that are skinny and white. Brandy Melville should not be thriving. They should not be making money. But somehow, 2020 accepts this treatment of girls and accepts the lack of inclusivity and love.