Torrid – Hot or Not?
I hate to admit it, but lately, I’ve been feeling a little chilled by Torrid.
Believe me, I love the store. I really do. It has revolutionized plus-size fashion in just six short years, making age-appropriate fashions accessible to teenagers and young adults in a way that had never been done before. It’s been my haven since freshman year of high school, right before it went from goth to glam and got really well-known for offering cutting-edge styles.
No longer did I need to stuff myself into elastic waistband jeans, over-sized (and ugly) tees/tops, and hideous flowered stretch pants. I could now buy real jeans that actually fit me nicely, cool screen tees and fashion tops, and even cute dresses that actually showed off my curvy figure. Half my wardrobe consists of their clothes (the rest an assortment vintage stuff I stole from my mom and grandma and a handful of items from Target, Avenue, and Lane Bryant) and I don’t even own a single pair of jeans that didn’t come from the store.
So why am I feeling so dissatisfied with Torrid lately?
Well, let’s start with the fact that even when I comb through the site every few weeks (since the closest store is a bit far from my college), I can barely find anything worth while anymore. It’s not that the fashions are necessarily ugly – in fact, most items are usually stunning and edgy (did I just use edgy unironically?) – they’re just not practical. While I always want to be stylish and attractive, a plaid corset top or a pink foil halter just isn’t going to cut it on my campus.
I’m no longer in high school. I need to convey a certain level sophistication, a certain looks that says, “I’m both smart and fashionable, but neither too nerdy or too gaudy.”
Sure this stuff is always cute and looks great on the models, but most of what I see these days just doesn’t work for me. I need something wearable, especially in the cold New England winters. But just look at these sweaters! Not ONE of them is practical for the every day. Sure, I want to stand out, but come on! I really just can’t picture myself in something like this:
(Sorry, I’d rather not wear something that looks like it has Charlie Brown’s upset mouth all over it)
(“Booger” doesn’t really go with my coloring. Have anything in “Amethyst”?)
(I have light eyes. I need something a little less…bright. And skanky.)
Of course they also sell great normal clothes, but I am not about to spend $35 on a short-sleeve top like that. Heck, I’m barely willing to spend that much on a long-sleeve sweater! I’m a college student. Mommy and daddy don’t chip in for my wardrobe anymore. I just can’t afford $40 a top.
This black pique short sleeve jacket is gorgeous and wearable. I could just picture myself donning it, especially over a long colorful shirt like the one picured. It would look great with my hourglass figure. The problem is Torrid is charging $50 for it.
That’s right, $50! For that tiny little thing. Sure, these are well-made products that last for years, but that kind of pricing is just outrageous. Torrid attracts younger customers who probably aren’t the professional women that a store like Lane Bryant appeals to. Most teenagers/young adults just don’t make that kind of money, and if they do, they’re probably not looking to spend it all on clothes. That jacket and the shirt under it or a pair of jeans would run me $100 alone and that’s just not feasible.
This past weekend, I did end up spending $100 on clothing. At New York & Company (sizes up to 18) I was able to buy seven items for the same price as I would have been able to buy two items at Torrid. An example of two my new tops:
Practical, wearable, fashionable. Sophistated, yet fun. Just enough of conservative without being boring, and just enough of cuteness without the cloying.
Maybe I’ve just outgrown my beloved Torrid. While I’ll always love the store and see myself continuing to buy things from there in the future, I just don’t know if I’ll be able to find most of what I need from there anymore. I’m starting to realize that I can be more of a lady and less of a “look at me!” I’ve mellowed, I’ve matured. I don’t need the attention the way I used to. I want people to look at me and be impressed, not wonder who I’m trying to impress.
Don’t feel bad, Torrid. It’s not you, it’s me.