Key Body Measurements to Ensure the Right Clothing Fit for Women - dummies

Key Body Measurements to Ensure the Right Clothing Fit for Women

By Jill Martin, Pierre A. Lehu

Part of Fashion For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Every item of clothing a woman puts on — from the outerwear to underwear — should be a fabulous fit. That’s why it’s so important to know what your true sizes are. With this info in hand, you can shop efficiently and effectively and build a wardrobe that not only looks great but feels great, too.

  • Chest: Start at the fullest part of your bust with the tape and circle under your armpits, around your shoulder blades, and back to the front.

  • Waist: Without sucking in your stomach, circle your waist with the tape at your natural waist line. (If you bend to the side, the crease that forms is your natural waist line.)

  • Hips: Measure around the largest part of your buttocks (use a mirror to make sure you have the tape measure in the right place).

  • Inseam: Have a friend stretch a tape measure from your crotch (while you’re wearing pants) to the bottom of your ankle. Or, if you have a pair of pants that fit you perfectly, you can measure the inseam yourself: Just stretch the tape from crotch to hem. Remember that the proper inseam depends on the height of the heel you wear with the pants.

  • Thigh: Take your thigh measurement around the fullest part of your thigh.

  • Upper arm: Measure around at the widest part of your arm.

  • Sleeve length: Place your hand at your waist, bending your elbow 90 degrees. Have a friend measure from the middle of the back of your neck to your shoulder, down your arm to the elbow, and then on to the wrist.

To get the most accurate measurements, use a cloth tape measure, not a metal one, and measure yourself on your bare skin, not over clothes (except for your inseam). Also, make sure that when you circle your chest, waist. or hips the tape is level and not too tight or too loose.