If Your Work Clothes Don’t Fit After A Year Of The Pandemic, You’re Not Alone

Lots of people experienced physical changes to their body over the pandemic—so if you have to head back to the office and your work clothing no longer fits you—you’re not alone. According to the Psychological Association’s latest “Stress in America” report, more than 42 percent of surveyed adults said they gained more weight than they intended to over the past 12 months, gaining an average of 29 pounds.

Personal stylist Melicia Marx says as people get called back to the office she’s hearing new and longtime clients say they’re concerned about fitting into their old clothes. Marx says, “As it is, heading back to the office can feel like going from zero to 100 with little support. When you feel critical of your body, that just adds to that stress. It can make folks dread going back to work rather than seeing the positive aspects like reuniting with co-workers in real life, visiting a favorite lunch spot or meeting friends for happy hour.”

She also says she likes to remind her clients of one of her favorite style mantras: You don’t need to change your body, you just need to change your clothes. The experts say if you’re purchasing new clothing be sure to take your measurements first, and compare them to the size charts for each brand you’re buying from, as size measurements vary across brands.