Why the older adults face clothing problems? What are the possible solutions?

January 24, 2019

It is a well-known fact that the average age of the global population is increasing rapidly as the years pass by. This is because the proportion of the old population in countries like China, United States, some European Countries, Japan, etc. is increasing rapidly. Even in India, though the percentage of young people is more, then too the percentage of older adults is still sufficient to surpass the percentage existing in the countries mentioned above. And all these countries account for most of the population of the world. Therefore, it can be inferred that the average age of the global population is more of above 60 or 65 as the case may be. The reason behind the longevity in human life is the ground-breaking achievements in the field of medicine resulting in an overall increase in life expectancy.

Old People’s Body Structure Issues – How it affects their clothing?

Now you know that people are living longer lives, but even if it is a positive fact, there are many difficulties faced by the elderly population too. And one major issue is their clothing problem. As people become older, there are obvious changes to their physical structure. Most of the old people experience a forward bend aka hunchback, their limbs become quite thin, but their hands appear longer than their legs. They get a natural flabby abdomen, their bust area moves a bit lower, and if they have any medical issues like arthritis, osteoporosis, etc. then their body is bound to be out of proportion.

Finding clothes for such body types is extremely difficult because most of the companies have to design standard clothing sizes which have standard measures at the chest, waist, bust, ankles, sleeves, etc. Whereas older adults never have a body structure that can fit into standard measurements, due to the factors mentioned above. As a result, there arises a problem of clothing among elders and a need to design custom clothes for the elderly.

Existing Options Available for Elderly

Based on the type of clothes, the following options are currently available for the elderly in their clothing:

  • Ready Made Clothes: These are the standard sized, same for all, kind of clothes which can fit very less proportion of the elderly population which have the body type to fit in it. Most of the people have some or the other measurement unsuitable for such clothes, and therefore they can’t buy these clothes.
  • Clothes based on physical measurements: The other alternative available is going to a tailor to get measurements of various important body dimensions like waist, bust, hips, etc. And, then getting custom stitched clothes as per those measurements. But this option is quite expensive as it involves tailor costs, separate cloth costs and also the additional labor charges which add on to an unaffordable price.
  • Special Cloth Designers: The last option which the older adults use is hiring a special clothing designer. This designer does all his homework from measurements to cloth suitability. And then designs custom clothes perfectly suited to your body dimensions. But this is the most expensive alternative and is usually used by the rich class in the older population.

Why there’s no specific solution available in the market?

  1. Producer worries:  It’s quite an obvious fact that most of the clothing products are consumed by the younger generation of the population since their clothing requirements are more and recurring. Therefore, most of the clothes producing industry indulge in the production of youth-oriented clothes and apparels. Because they want maximum sales and also, they want to ensure that there’s no leftover stock.
  • Merchant Point of view: As stated above, youth-oriented clothes are sold more often than the apparels for the elderly. Moreover, the margin earned from selling western and youth-oriented clothes is much more as compared to the clothes for the elderly. Therefore, merchants too prefer clothes for the younger population than for the older ones.

As a result of these two aspects, the older generation has to wander from store to store, to find the ideal fitting clothes for them.

Solution to these Elderly People’s Clothing problems

As an inference to all the facts mentioned above, older people rarely find ideal clothes in one go at a shop. But what if this became true? There have been developments in this segment of clothing lately. As per a Chinese Research on the Body structures if elderly population, there are mainly three body types in elderly:

  • Endomorph: The Bust loosely falls a bit lower, there’s some abdominal fat which too appears hanging lower and there’s a hunchback posture. This body type is seen more at the later stages of old age like above 75 or 80 years of age. So what companies can do is create a standard pattern on the basis of these factors mentioned above and brand it as clothing for endomorphic body type elders.
  • Lean:  Under this category are the elders who are lean and slightly muscular without any loose flab around the abdomen or bust. These types of elders are difficult to find clothes for because their size is way too small. Fir such body type, companies can design custom smallest size and label it suitable for lean body type of elders.
  • Abdomen Heavy: The most commonly found busy type among elders is the one where the rest of the body appears normal, but they have a pot belly. For this issue, companies can specifically create a cloth line flexible in abdominal area and brand it suitable for such category of elders.

Several companies across the globe are doing all of these efforts and planning. All you need to do is find the ideal company engaged in finding clothing solutions for elderly. One such company which might help you find the ideal custom or adaptive clothing line for elderly is https://residentessentials.com/ .


Clothing for older adults is a major concern because of the varied body structures, complexions, postural variations, etc. Besides, the existing options in the clothing industry are way too limited and unsuitable for old people, causing them to helplessly wander around all over the shopping market trying to find themselves good clothes that fit. To solve these problems, companies need to concentrate on most common body structures among older people and develop clothing segments exclusively dedicated to such specific body types of the elderly.

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