Question for REI

I love the selection and convenience and good deeds of REI, but today I was moved to send them the following member comment.

Why does your Berkeley store not stock items in men’s size small?

In recent years, clothes have been getting larger, a medium from 10 years ago is the same size as many smalls today.  To compensate many vendors have added a size extra small (note Columbia).

This is the fattening of America and I guess I expect Walmart to cater to it, but REI?

Today I made another wasted trip to your Berkeley store–fully 80% of your men’s clothing starts with size medium and usually goes to xxl.  So instead of browsing for what I like, I am left to browse for what fits.  When I ask a store person if they have something in size small they tell me to go home and order it off the internet.

My question: if I don’t get to have the luxury of feeling the material or trying the item on, why should I not go to a budget website and buy the same item for 30-50% less?

I would much prefer to spend my money locally–but if you remove all the benefits of bricks and mortar–there is little incentive to do so.

I know it is not lack of sales that prevents you from stocking size small.  I go and browse the clearance sales and these have virtually no size small.  This indicates that the few smalls that you do stock usually sell.

I assume you have some formula for deciding how many of each size to order, are you using the same formula for Michigan as you are for Berkeley?  If this is the case, perhaps you would want to rethink it.

My apologies for the whiny nature of this comment/question.

I’ll edit this post with any response I might recieve.


They’ve decided to answer without answering, to wit:

Thank you for contacting REI regarding our sizing selection.

We appreciate you taking the time to provide your feedback on the clothing selection we offer. Every request we receive is forwarded to the appropriate department for consideration.

While our sizing selection may vary from store to store, we do offer a variety of sizes available in most items on  As I’m sure you are aware, we also free shipping to all of our REI stores.

I apologize for any inconvenience our sizing selection has caused you.

Thank you for your comments.