Nike introduces plus-size mannequins in London flagship store

LONDON -- The sales floor at Nike's London flagship store just got a little more diverse, welcoming plus-size and para-sport mannequins to the location for the first time.

Nike unveiled the new lineup of mannequins Wednesday after renovating the third floor of NikeTown London. As part of the renovation, Nike also expanded its offering of plus-size styles available in the store.

"With the incredible momentum in women's sport right now, the redesigned space is just another demonstration of Nike's commitment to inspiring and serving the female athlete," Sarah Hannah, Nike's general manager and vice president for women in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, said in a statement.

It's not immediately clear how widely Nike plans to use the plus-size and para-sport mannequins.

The activewear retailer, which launched its full plus-size line in 2017, joins Target, Old Navy, Nordstrom and other retailers that have opted to diversify their mannequins in recent years.

Nordstrom introduced its size-inclusive mannequins last year as part of a broader size-inclusivity initiative in dozens of stores. The department store also upped its in-store and online offerings for both plus-size and petite customers.

"Style and fashion apply to everyone. We don't view being size inclusive any differently that the need to be more inclusive across the board-whether it's ethnicity, size or body type. In our opinion, petite and plus sizes shouldn't be considered special categories. They're just sizes," Tricia Smith, Nordstrom's executive vice president and general merchandise manager for women's apparel, said at the time in a statement.

A 2017 study from the Universities of Liverpool and Oxford examined mannequins in 17 stores across two English shopping districts, finding that 100% of the female mannequins surveyed represented underweight body types.

Only 8% of male mannequins surveyed were underweight, but study authors pointed out that the male mannequins "appeared unrealistically muscular."
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