A couple of days ago, my sister sent me a text message that I immediately fielded to my coworkers: “Where am I supposed to buy crop tops now that American Apparel is gone forever?”
While I’m not as much as a midriff-barer as my sister — she had a belly-button piercing in high school and now has some Britney Spears-level abs, thanks to yoga — I too feel her pain. There are two or three cropped tank tops and tees from the late retailer that I count among my wardrobe staples; they’re perfect for layering under dresses or wearing with high-waisted shorts or skirts in summer, and when they finally wear out for good, I’m not sure what I’ll replace them with, especially considering the wallet-friendly price point I originally bought them for. So I went on the hunt for a few options, in case anyone else is in a similar predicament.
Since we’re talking about crop tops here, the most natural places to look are the big teen retailers. Of the ones I checked out, American Eagle and Brandy Melville seem to have the best offerings. If you search “crop top” at American Eagle, over 260 results pop up; ignore all the nonsense slogan tees for the more wearable highlights, which include this Tie-Back Crop Cami ($14), the very American Apparel-esque Aerie Super Crop Tank ($13), and this Ribbed Crop T-Shirt ($10). Take note, most shirts are under $15.
While the styles are great, the sizing at Brandy Melville is a little frustrating: For the most part it’s “one size fits all,” which means it either works for you or it doesn’t. (My younger cousins, straight and plus sizes, swear that they all shop at the store, they just pick out different things or expect the same shirts to look different on them.) Bottom line, Brandy Melville is best for petites. If that’s you, there are all kinds of cropped tees and tank tops that are just as…