J. Crew recently introduced a new size, 000 or XXXS.
The extra-extra-extra-small size is for customers with a 23-inch waist. The company said the line was designed for smaller petite women, and was introduced in response to growing demand from customers in Asia. It's available in Hong Kong and also online.
Just to give you an idea, a 23-inch waist is about 11 inches smaller than that of the average American woman, and is about the same circumference as a basketball.
The company has denied its new XXXS triple-zero line has anything to do with vanity sizing.
I find that hard to believe.
For those not familiar with the concept, vanity sizing is when brands increase the measurements of their clothing without changing their size guide so that eights become sixes, sixes become fours, etc. It's a process that's out of whack with reality, but makes the customer feel good about the size they're buying.
Vanity sizing is based on the misguided notion that you need to lie to women in order to sell clothing. It promulgates the damaging concept that self-worth is directly proportional to clothing size.
Despite the average woman becoming heavier over recent decades, most are wearing a smaller size. It defies logic, yet internally it feeds our egos so we continue to purchase the "smaller" size with a smile.
At the rate J Crew's tag sizes are shrinking, I can eat ice cream and french fries on a daily basis and I'll still be a size XXXS by the end of this decade.