A stream of Forever 21 online customers have taken to Twitter to express their disappointment in the retailer after opening their packaging to find the clothing they ordered – and a diet bar that they definitely did not order.
The fast-fashion brand has started sending samples of lemon bars from diet company Atkins, who are known for their little-to-no-carb mantra for weight loss. And while it's not totally clear which orders have been receiving this unsolicited diet recommendation, it would appear that many of the impacted customers appear to have ordered from the plus-size range, according to a series of complaints on social media.
Users wrote that they felt 'triggered' by the inclusion of the product, accusing the brand of 'body-shaming' its plus-sized customers.
The inclusion of the products is definitely problematic – research has linked advertising that products dieting to body dissatisfaction – and it is especially unsettling when that advertising is included with clothing purchases.
However, Forever 21 has apologised to anyone they offended. "From time to time, Forever 21 surprises our customers with free test products from third parties in their e-commerce orders," read the statement.
"The freebie items in question were included in all online orders, across all sizes and categories, for a limited time and have since been removed. This was an oversight on our part and we sincerely apologise for any offence this may have caused to our customers, as this was not our intention in any way."