Melissa McCarthy blasts malls for segregating plus-size clothing for women

McCarthy speaks candidly with MORE Magazine: "[My] store is upstairs hidden by the tire section"

Published May 28, 2015 8:42PM (EDT)

Melissa McCarthy       (Reuters/Mario Anzuoni)
Melissa McCarthy (Reuters/Mario Anzuoni)

Three years ago, Melissa McCarthy couldn't find anyone to design a dress for her to wear to her big night at the Oscars. She asked six designers — "very high-level ones who make lots of dresses for people" — and each said no. At the time, the incredibly disheartening news brought some fleeting attention to the struggles plus-size women face -- even wealthy, successful, Oscar-nominated ones -- and provided McCarthy the momentum to start working away at her very own clothing line.

Now, in anticipation of her clothing-line launch slated for August, McCarthy spoke candidly with MORE Magazine about how the shopping experience for a plus-size woman hasn't seen dramatic improvements in the years since that 2012 debacle.

McCarthy singles out one easily remedied issue, in particular, that she still faces while shopping: the segregation of plus-size clothing in department stores.

“People don’t stop at size 12," she tells MORE. "I feel like there’s a big thing missing where you can’t dress to your mood above a certain number. [Malls] segregate plus-size [women]. It’s an odd thing that you can’t go shopping with your friends because your store is upstairs hidden by the tire section. ‘We’ll put you gals over there because we don’t want to see you and you probably don’t want to be seen.'”

She continues: "There is just this weird thing about how we perceive women in this country. I would love to be a part of breaking that down.”

According to MORE, McCarthy's clothing line will contain upwards of "80 pieces in sizes 4 to 28" marked from $59 to $159 and will be available at Nordstrom, Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s -- as well as her personal website

McCarthy has been the subject of much media attention this month; her empowering body-positive interview with Ellen rehashing her run-in with a reporter who called her hideous in a review of "Tammy" went viral last week.

Read McCarthy's full interview with MORE here.

By Colin Gorenstein

Colin Gorenstein is Salon's assistant editor of internet and viral content. Follow @colingorenstein or email

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