How to Survive Fitting Room Burnout

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How To Survive Fitting Room Burnout

                              By Sadiyah Bashir

Image from Aisha M-Williams vsco.co/maedre

If you work in retail you know that getting someone in the fitting room is half a step to gaining a purchase. Everyday I see people go in and out of fitting rooms satisfied, excited or, completely burned out. A few signs that tell you someone has just burned out in the fitting room: They took in a bunch of clothes but weren’t in the fitting room long enough to try them on or, the disappointment on their face is leveled with distant and indirect body language.

Burnout can come in many different ways, depending on your identity. I’ve seen masculine presenting femme people trying on “women's clothes” who receive burnout from people staring at their clothing choices, young women whose clothing choices are being dictated by others and the most common, people who have recently gained weight. I have been a part of the spectrum of people who burnout in the fitting room due to weight. You come in with the sizes you thought you were, put on a pair of pants you thought could fit, once it doesn’t fit the way you wanted it to the five other pieces in the closet become obsolete.

The four steps I’ve acquired for fitting room burnout are:

1. Take a deep breath and try to stay positive

It’s okay, everyone’s weight changes. Step one of walking into the store is all about mindset! Create an environment mentally that tells yourself you got this.

2. Have a playlist going!

As you’re shopping listen to whatever makes you happy and keeps that positive mindset. I love to listen to music that makes me feel fabulous. Anything Beyonce-esque you can’t go wrong.

3. Pick multiple sizes (especially in pants or dresses)

Honestly, in one store I can wear a 12 in some Black denim jeans and then grab a 16 in light denim jeans. If you’re at a store that buys from multiple different clothing lines their sizes are going to be different. That’s okay! That doesn’t reflect anything being wrong with you or your body.

4. Look in multiple mirrors.

One time I was in the fitting room with my sister as she tried on clothes. In the mirror of the fitting room she was in, she looked rather wide especially in the hips. I asked her to step out so I could see, when she stepped out and looked at the big mirror in the hallway she said she looked different, went back into her fitting room and we both saw the difference in the mirrors. One looked normal whereas the other made her look shorter and wider. So make sure to look at multiple mirrors to get a variety of views which can give you a more accurate perspective.

If you’re a fitting room attendant make sure to be as reassuring and real as possible. If something doesn’t look like what the person who is wearing it wants find constructive ways to say so. Sometimes they really trust your judgement so be honest, it’s better to be honest with someone so they come back instead of lying. If someone is uncomfortable with their choices and don’t want others to see, take their clothing in the room for them. Remember, you create the environment that helps choose whether or not someone will buy the piece.

For more from Sadiyah check her out on Instagram @grandmaster.fleek

Pray, Say & Slay Team