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Big men becoming the new fashion victims.

LONDON Dec 7th: - Curvy women rejoice. The next time you are in the changing room and your man asks, "Does my bum look big in this?", take a deep breath, be honest and offer to grab an XXL for him instead.
Men are finally having to get to grips with their expanding waistlines and the trials of shopping for plus-size clothing.
But while the fairer sex have embraced their Rubenesque figures, the boys are having to face some harsh facts. Yes, those tight-fitting trousers really are too small and Lycra is never a good look when you're trying to cover up a beer belly.
Research released yesterday reveals that after years of pressure to conform to the size zero, 18% of British women now wear size 18 and up. The market for women's plus-sized clothing is now worth 3.8bn, with a 26% growth in sales over the past five years
But across the fitting room floor, the ever-growing male population have helped sales in the plus-size male clothing industry increase by 40% in the same period. Today, the market for men's clothes sized XL or larger is worth 1.7bn, up from 1.2bn in 2003.
Such is the expansion, that researchers are predicting that boys will overtake the girls, with the plus-size menswear market projected to increase by 26% between 2008 and 2013, according to researchers Mintel.
But the men also have a lot of catching up to do in the sheer range of fashionable clothes now available for larger women. While women are relishing their newfound confidence as "curvy and chic", for men all too often it's a case of "fat and fashion-free".
Celebrities such as Nigella Lawson, Charlotte Church, Chris Moyles and Peter Kay have promoted the fuller figure on both sides of the gender divide.
The Mintel research also revealed that despite retailers' efforts to improve the fit of clothes, many shoppers are dissatisfied about fit and sizing.
Figures show that as many as one in three adults "sometimes or regularly have problems finding clothes that fit".
On top of this, 20% believe "shops assume that people are all the same shape", while more than one in 10 say that "clothing fit problems have made them feel that they are the wrong shape".
Katrin Magnussen, senior fashion analyst at Mintel, said: "Obviously, some men simply prefer wearing baggy clothes, but for a vast majority, these ranges are their only option."
Douglas Hearn, marketing manager for Rochester Big and Small a leading specialist retailer for large and tall men, said: "We have come to the UK because customers are frustrated that they can't get fashionable clothes from our competitors, but I don't think there is a stigma attached to bigger men.
"Our clothes make large men feel comfortable, in what we have realised is a rapidly growing market, and we want them to have the same variety of fashion choice as everyone else."

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