NEW Look has come under fire after allegedly imposing a ‘fat tax’ on its plus-sized customers.
The claims come after a shopper noticed a pair of trousers from the high street fashion brand’s Curve range was being sold for 15 per cent more than an identical pair in the store’s main collection.
Mercury Press These trousers in the brand’s Curves range are more expensive than their regular sized counterparts
Now Maria Wassell, a retail supervisor from Kent, has decided to boycott the chain after spotting the differently priced items at her local Ashford branch.
She said she was “absolutely disgusted” after finding a pair of green stripped trousers were being sold for £22.99 in the Curves range, but just £19.99 in their standard range.
Mum-of-two Maria stormed out of the store in outrage and took to the retailer’s online site to check for any more disparities in pricing.
She claims she found a size 18 striped T-shirt with the slogan ‘tres jolie’ which she paid £12.99 for the previous weekend was being sold for just £9.99 in the standard range – a 30 per cent difference.
Mercury Press Maria noticed the smaller sized striped trousers were cheaper than the same item in bigger sizes
Maria, who has worked in retail for 26 years, said: “It’s like I’m being discriminated against for being plus size when I’m only slightly bigger than average.
“The average size for a British woman is now a size 16.
“Plus size purchases are on the increase. If you look at the statistics, there’s more money being spent on plus size clothing now then there was even three years ago.
“Why should we be penalised for being slightly bigger? A lot of retailers do this.
“Some retailers have claimed that plus size clothes need more fabric and that’s why it costs more. That’s basically rubbish.
“I used to work for a plus size brand so I do understand a lot about how it works.”
Mercury Press Maria was outraged to discover this T-shirt was more expensive in a bigger size
Mercury Press Maria’s T-shirt is being sold at a much cheaper price in the store’s regular size range
The 43-year-old says she feels the retailer is alienating itself from vast swathes of shoppers by having price disparities on apparently identical items of clothing.
She added: “It’s discriminating against those customers who are larger.
“Even the trousers in their tall range, which would also require more fabric, are the same price as the normal ones. I’m annoyed.
“Retail at the moment is a really hard business to be in and they’re not doing themselves any favours. New Look are already closing stores down.”
Mercury Press Other items differently priced across New Look’s ranges include this red dress
Mercury Press The exact same item still costs £6 more on sale – the dresses were priced £8 apart before going on sale
Maria contacted New Look and claimed she was told ‘some products appear similar but may be slightly different’.
New Look added that they are in the process of reviewing the pricing structure of its plus size collection.
Despite this, fashion lover Maria has vowed to boycott its stores until the pricing disparity issue is resolved.