On TV, Danielle Brooks is a brutally honest woman constantly fighting for justice.
In real life: same.
Brooks, who plays Taystee on Netflix’s hit show “Orange Is The New Black,” is pregnant with her first child. And the body-positive star has a question: where are all the maternity clothes for plus-size women?
“It’s so hard to find cute plus size maternity fashion while pregnant, but ima push through,” Brooks wrote on Instagram alongside a video of her lamenting the lack of options (Also, someone please get her a recording contract).
In the video, Brooks shows off her vocal range while relaying her message to the tune of the Boyz II Men classic, “It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday.”
Maternity fashion is lacking
It’s a real problem.
The global maternity apparel market is expected to become a $7-billion industry by 2023, according to Report Buyer. But, the options are still limited, with Metro News reporting that plus-size maternity clothes are hard to find.
“Maybe someone in an office somewhere has forgotten that plus-size women have babies, but a cursory look at most standard maternity ranges will tell you that if you’re bigger than a size 18, you’re going to struggle,” Metro UK writes.
A quick search of popular maternity lines in Canada shows this to be true. Gap Maternity appears to only carry sizes up to XL and XXL. Old Navy’s maternity options only go up to XXL or size 18. H&M’s maternity site only has options available in up to XXL (which they call 2XL). These are some of the more affordable clothing lines.
There are more options at specialty maternity stores, where prices run a little steeper. Thyme Maternity’s website offers some extended sizes up to 4X (although many of the clothing options are not in stock or available online).
Motherhood Maternity also has a plus-size page, currently offering 37 clothing options in sizes 3X, and this site at least uses actual plus-size models, but a single top will cost you around 40 bucks (and ... you might need more than one).
Never mind that pregnancy tends to be uncomfortable, many maternity clothes are fitted, and lots of women choose to buy a size up, no matter their size.
Less of that. More of Brooks being awesome.
Earlier in August, the star graced the digital cover of Shape. In an interview, she says she embraces being a role model for loving your body.
“As I met people along the way, I began to understand the importance of not shying away from being an advocate for body positivity, but running toward it full throttle,” Brooks said in Shape.
But, she added that accepting her pregnant body has been a little more challenging.
“I’m really having to practice what I preach, about loving yourself at whatever stage you’re at, because my body has been going through quite the transition,” she said.
“There’s so much beauty in my body taking new shape every week, and it’s been quite a joy to know that I get to bring another life into this world.”