With a lack of sizing standards in the apparel industry, it can sometimes get really confusing to find a perfect fit for plus size clothing. The first step however, is to measure yourself ‘accurately’ to ensure you have your correct size. More often than not, women measure themselves using a cloth tape and simply figure out that the number on the tape is the size number they should be looking for. This just isn’t really the case.
The need to measure yourself correctly is even more when shopping online. Even though shopping online provides benefits like going through huge range of inventory designs in short periods of time (something which you can never do in the real world stores), it does have its pitfalls. Like not being able to try on the dress or piece of clothing before you actually order it and receive it. Hence, while shopping online, its a must that you know your correct size and know how different manufacturers use those numbers to size their clothes.
Hence we provide specific guidelines over here on how to measure yourself. These guidelines will help you find your ‘size number’. You can then use these numbers in conjunction with the details every store provides on their individual items page description.
Sidenote: When in doubt, make sure you call the customer service number of the online store to find specific details for your fit. These numbers are available on every store’s sites, or you can find them here in our plus size store reviews at PlusSizeView.
Lets Measure Your Size:
Use a cloth tape to measure your bust, waist and hips. Make sure you are standing straight and tall (if you can, ask a friend to measure for you) in front of a mirror. And no matter how much you want to, don’t pull the tape too tight. Just make it ‘comfortably‘ tight enough leaving enough room to breathe. Also, it’s important to remember to keep the tape straight across your body and parallel to the floor (a common problem if you are measuring yourself).
- Bust: Measure around and over the fullest part of your bust, under your armpits.
- Waist: Measure around your natural waistline.
- Hips: Stand with your feet together and measure around the fullest part of your lower body (usually around 7-9 inches below your natural waistline) including your hips and buttocks.
- Torso: Measure from your shoulders down your back, through your legs, and back up to the fullest part of your bust.
Measuring Your Bra Size:
To find out your bra size, you need to measure three things: band measurement, bust size and cup size.
- Band Measurement: This is the measurement of your rib cage just below the breast. Measure it using a cloth tape without a bra or while wearing a comfortable one. Add 3 inches to this number (round odd numbers up to an even number).
Sidenote: Don’t be confused if you’ve read somewhere that you need to add 5 inches instead of 3 as we suggested here. It’s common for sizes 33 and less to add 5 inches, and for sizes 33 above to add 3 inches.
- Bust Size: Measure your bust as above. Around and over the fullest part of your bust, under your armpits.
- Cup Size: Subtract the above two values (Bust Size – Band Measurement) to get your cup size value. For example, lets say your bust size is 44″ and your band measurement is 40″, then your cup size is 44-40 = 4inches. Use this table to convert your cup size:
Size (inches) 2 3 4 5 6 7 Cup Size B C D E or DD F or DDD G
Ready To Go:
Now that you know your measurements, you can easily find out which size to order while selecting and ordering your purchase. Plus sizes are often indicated with a succeeding ‘W’ such as 14W-24W. You can use the table below for general guidelines, but be sure to check out the size charts of individual stores or manufacturers for a perfect fit (individual store size charts can be found here at plus size view).
|Bust||41½ – 43||42½ – 45||44½ – 47||46½ – 49||48½ – 51||50½ – 53||52½ – 55||55½ – 57||57½ – 59|
|Waist||33½ – 35||34½ – 37||36½ – 39||38½ – 41½||40½ – 44||42½ – 46½||44½ – 49||49½ – 51½||52½ – 54|
|Hips||44 – 45½||45 – 47½||47 – 49½||49 – 51½||51 – 53½||53 – 55½||55 – 57½||58 – 59½||60 – 61½|
I hope this guide was helpful. Always remember, when in doubt, order a size up. Or better still, call the customer service number of the store to find specific details for your fit (these numbers can be found in our store reviews section or at individual store sites).