An online retailer of plus-size women’s clothing has been accused of “mocking” its customer base with a series of product images advertising underwear, in which thin models sport plus-size panties, pulling the lingerie away from their bodies to apparently highlight the sizing discrepancy.
On May 1, Kristin Russell of Falls City, Neb. took to Facebook to voice her grievances with Plus Size Baby after being “deeply offended” by the site’s advertising images for underwear, The Sun reports.
“Plus size friends DO NOT order from Plus Size Baby ... this is their idea of advertising plus size clothing,” the mom of one wrote in a post that has since gone viral with over 25,000 shares and 15,000 likes. “You want our business but you do not want to actually represent our bodies. This is pathetic and embarrassing.”
Though she was simply speaking her mind, Russell has since admitted she never expected her message to go as far and wide as it did.
“I had never actually heard of the company before, but I came across their website one day after one of their advertisements popped up on Twitter,” the 31-year-old said.
“I was looking to buy some nice lingerie, and I do prefer buying online as it can be difficult to find nice plus-sized underwear in stores,” Russell, who wears a size 24, continued. “I thought it must have been a mistake. I didn’t think anyone would advertise that way. But the website was full of them and they just got more offensive as you keep looking.”
“It just made me feel bad about myself,” she acknowledged. “I honestly have no idea why they’ve chosen to advertise in this way. I don’t know if perhaps they were just embarrassed to have someone of a bigger size wearing their clothes. It’s not helpful at all.”
Twitter users, too, were largely outraged with Plus Size Baby’s peculiar product images.
“So y’all couldn’t find a plus size model [?]” one user wondered.
“You literally had an XS girl STRETCH THE MATERIAL TO SHOW HOW BIG IT IS ON HER. ARE YOU SERIOUS?” another shouted. “This CANNOT be real right now.”
“Y’all HAVE to be joking right? no one thought this was a bad idea? not ONE SINGLE PERSON was like why don’t we just use a plus sized model??” another sounded off.
“Went to the site out of curiosity and found this lovely listing,” another eagle-eyed user pointed out, sharing an unbelievable ad of a model with both of her legs tucked into one pant leg on a pair of leggings. “It's not just lingerie they do it on. Speaks volumes about what they truly think about their customer base.”
“Seems very insulting and almost like they're mocking the size instead of making them look flattering and sexy,” another agreed.
Reps for Plus Size Baby did not immediately return Fox News’ request for comment on the backlash to the photos.
Moving forward, Russell says that she hopes the now-viral tale teaches officials at the brand a lesson in inclusivity.
“I really just hope that the company take these comments seriously and consider changing their website,” the Nebraska woman stated. “You want to feel sexy when buying lingerie, regardless of what size you are.”