If you struggle with knowing what size to order when shopping online. If you've ever ordered what you thought was your size only to have your clothes be too big or small, you may have made one mistake — not taking your measurements. We'll show you how to take your body measurements for shopping confidently and getting clothes that fit you a lot better. Every store has different size standards, so taking measurements is the only way to know your size for sure. We'll guide you through getting the most common measurements needed to find the best fit, whether you have a flexible measuring tape or not.
So how is it done? And what parts of your body do you need to measure? Below, we've outlined everything you need to know about taking measurements to find your perfect fit!
What do you need to take your measurements?
Before you measure your body to fit into clothes, gather what you need to take your measurements. Here's what you'll need:
A flexible measuring tape: Use a flexible measuring tape to take your measurements. This tool makes it easy to take accurate measurements around your body. It's also a fairly inexpensive item that you'll use a lot, and you may already have one in a sewing kit. If you can, avoid using a fabric measuring tape. Those tend to stretch over time, meaning you won't get an accurate number. If you must use a cloth tape, make sure it's a relatively new one or double-check it with a ruler.
Paper and pen: You'll need a way to write down your measurements. You may even keep them in a note on your phone or computer to reference as you're shopping online. No matter how you note your measurements, add the date so you know which numbers are the most recent.
Someone to help: The easiest way to get accurate measurements is to have someone help you. They can wrap the tape around you and read it for the right measurements. If you don't have a helper, it's still possible to take your own measurements.
A mirror: If you don't have someone to measure you, you'll need a mirror. You can then see that you're measuring the right parts of your body and that the measuring tape is flat and snug all around you.
Your usual undergarments: Wear what you normally wear when you take your measurements. A padded support bra adds to your bust measurement, for instance, so you'll want that addition included if you'll wear it with the garment you order.
Fitted clothes: If you don't want to take measurements against your body, make sure you wear fitted clothes. Wear thin fabrics instead of bulky items to hold the measuring tape as close to your skin as possible.
The right posture: As someone measures you, stand upright and relax your body. Put your feet together and breathe normally. If you're measuring yourself, it may be difficult to maintain this posture, but that's where a mirror comes in handy.
Why is it important to take body measurements before shopping?
Taking body measurements is a simple process with a big payoff. You should do this before shopping because:
You can't try on clothes online: Shopping in a store lets you find your perfect fit in person. But when you shop online, you don't have that convenience. Taking your body measurements is the only way to get an accurate fit other than ordering multiple sizes and returning what doesn't work.
You'll understand how the clothes will fit: Having your body measurements on hand lets you conceptualize how a clothing item will fit. Everyone's body is unique, and that means clothing may fit differently on you than standard sizes intend. Knowing your measurements will help you determine if a garment will be short or long on your specific size and shape.
You'll realize that every store is different: Sizes aren't universal. Clothes from certain stores may fit tighter while others have a looser fit, even in the same size. You risk not getting an accurate fit if you simply buy the same size from every clothing store you shop with.
You won't have to hassle with returns: If you don't order the right clothing size online, you'll have to go through the process of making returns. Even if a store has a simple and free return process, you'll still have to wait for the new piece in the right size after returning the wrong one.
You'll save money: You won't have to buy multiple sizes to see what will fit or pay return shipping with stores that charge that fee. Because you'll use your measurements for online shopping, you'll order the right thing the first time around.
You'll need little to no alterations: When you order the right size, you won't have to get clothes like dresses altered. Or, at the very least, you'll only need minor alterations, which again saves you money.
You want to look stylish: Clothes that fit poorly won't make you look or feel your best. The right fit gives you a boost to your style and confidence, making your body measurements essential to your overall look.
In this video Fernanda cover:
-How to measure your bust, waist, hip, center back length, and sleeve;
-Go over what an inseam is, a body length measurement, and a skirt length;
-Give you some extra tips to help you select the best fit when shopping online!
Let's watch the video!
Other tips for taking body measurements
As you take measurements to find your perfect fit, you want to be as accurate as possible. Use these extra tips to see how to take body measurements for online shopping:
Measure from the zero of the tape: Some tape measures have a gap between the start of the tool and the zero line. Ensure you match up the zero line with the numbers on your tape measure for an accurate reading.
Pick the larger size: If you find that your measurements across different areas of your body put you into different size categories, go for the larger size. It's easier to alter larger clothes to fit smaller than it is to make tight clothes bigger.
Compare with other clothes: If you have clothes that fit perfectly, use those for extra measurements. Some sites provide a size chart based on the size across an item of clothing. Use your garment and measure the length of the torso, the front width of the waist, the front width of the bust and other areas based on what clothes you want.
Remeasure if necessary: Feel free to retake your measurements to ensure you're getting the right numbers. Go through the list of body measurements once, then do it again to double-check. You could also have someone help you with your measurements once you've taken them yourself.
Avoid measuring too often: While you can double-check your measurements, you don't want to check them every week, especially if you're working to lower your weight. It may be weeks until your body changes, but if you do think your weight has changed, then remeasure after six or so weeks.
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