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Article: The Ultimate Clothing Size Guide for Women

The Ultimate Clothing Size Guide for Women

The Ultimate Clothing Size Guide for Women

It can feel challenging or even downright overwhelming to try to find the right size for your clothing online. You don’t want to deal with the hassle of going to shop in person, but can you really find the right answer to “how should jeans fit” when you’re looking at them from the comfort of your couch? The good news is,you can get the perfect fit of jeans online, just like you find that cute sparkly blouse or pretty peacoat with any of these helpful online shopping tips. Keep reading our ultimate clothing size guide for women to find your perfect look online using these handy tips and tricks.

How Avara Measures Clothing

We all want a perfect pair of jeans that fits you just right. When you’re trying to figure out which women’s bottoms fit your style and your body type, it’s important to know not only your size but how other designers measure your clothing. Here’s how we measure clothing at Avara:

  • Tops — Tops at Avara are measured by both the bust and length of each garment. Everything from blouses to dresses is measured over the chest from one underarm seam to the other, and the number is then doubled. The length of the T-shirt or sweater, for example, is measured from the shoulder seam of your top to the bottom of your top or dress.
  • Bottoms — As for bottoms from Avara, we measure the waistband, length of the bottoms, and inseam as well. The waistband is measured for all bottoms, like jeans and skirts, from each side and then doubled. The length is measured from the top to the bottom of your garment. The inseam is measured for all of Avara’s jeans, shorts, and joggers, from the inner crotch seam to the bottom of the hem.

how we measure clothing

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How to Measure Your Body for Clothing Sizes

According to, whenever you’re buying clothes online because you’re not trying anything on, it’s important to know some key measurements. These measurements include your chest, waist, hips, and inseam. If you’ve never measured any of these by yourself before, don’t worry. Just use these easy tips to figure out your size for any clothing you get online:

  • How to Measure Your Chest — It’s important to know your chest or bust size, so you’ll know which tops and dresses will fit you best. In order to measure your chest, take a tape measure and place one end of the tape at the fullest part of your bust. Then, wrap the tape around your body to get the measurement, keeping the tape parallel to the floor, and the number of inches you get, such as 32 inches, refers to your bust size. For example, if you have a 32-inch bust, the tops you should get would be in the 30-32 inch or XS size.
  • How to Measure Your Waist — Waist measurements are used for bottoms and are particularly helpful for knowing which pair of jeans to get. Measure your waist by finding the narrowest part of your waist, right above your navel and below your rib cage. This part is known as your natural waist, and most jeans are designed with your natural waist in mind.
  • How to Measure Your Hips — You may also want to measure your hips, which are most commonly used for bottoms but may also sometimes be used for dresses. To measure your hips, you may want to ask for help from a friend or at least stand in front of a mirror to help guide you. First, stand with your legs (is that what this is supposed to say?) together, and then measure the fullest part of your hips.
  • How to Measure Your Inseam — Inseams are a measurement for jeans and other pants. It’s the distance from the upper part of your thigh to your ankle. The rule of thumb for inseams is that if you’re on the shorter end, you’ll want a shorter inseam. Women who are taller will want longer inseams. To measure your inseam, measure from your crotch to the cuff of your leg. The inseam length is the number of inches. It’s best to measure your inseam length with a pair of shoes on so you’ll know the hem that’s ideal based on what shoes you plan on wearing, all of which can change depending on whether you’re wearing flats or heels.

key body measurements

Tips for Finding Your Perfect Fit

We’re all built differently, and that means what may look great on someone else may not be as flattering on others. It comes down to what makes you feel confident and what helps enhance your natural shape. For example, if you have an apple-shaped body type, some cute outerwear options for you include an A-line coat or a bomber jacket. For ladies with an hourglass shape, consider a trench coat or belted wrap coat. Keep in mind any of these helpful tips for finding your perfect fit for dresses, skirts, and jeans, too!

  • Know Your Body Type — First things first, it’s important to know about the different general body types out there and what kind of body type you have. Depending on your body type, different pieces, from midi skirts to skinny jeans may suit you differently. Common body types include pear, rectangle, inverted triangle, hourglass, and round (also known as an apple) shapes. There are plenty of articles out there that can help style you depending on your body type, but here’s some general information to keep in mind. 
  • Finding the Perfect Dress — To pick the perfect dress for you, figure out what kind of waist you want, such as an empire waist just below your bust or a drop waist that sits at your hip. There are plenty of options for dress shapes as well — everything from a shift dress to a trapeze dress. Ladies with an inverted triangle shape can easily rock a v-neck dress. Wrap dresses are perfect for women with an hourglass shape. 
  • Finding the Perfect Skirt — When shopping for skirts online, figure out what skirt length and style suits you best. Plus size ladies look lovely in elongating prints like pinstripes and pleats along with knee-length skirts. If you have an inverted triangle shape or an apple or round shape, you’ll look fantastic with an A-line skirt to help balance out your look. Pencil skirts are a great option for women with an hourglass body type.
  • Finding the Perfect Jeans — Finding the perfect pair of jeans can be intimidating, but keep some basic tips in mind when shopping for jeans online. Try getting three different sizes: one that you think you are, one above that size, and one just below that size, because jeans can vary across different fits, styles, and brands. In general, skinny jeans are a great option for all different body types. Don’t be afraid to play around with different proportions, like different fits and rises, until you find what works best for you. For example, pear-shaped ladies look great with slim fit, dark wash jeans.

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Common Terms for Women’s Clothing Sizes

While each brand or designer may have their own standards for what they consider to be a medium, there are common terms across women’s clothing sizes that you should be familiar with. Understanding all these commonly used words will help you pick the best-fitting clothing for your body type and style. Some women prefer a fit that’s more snug against their body while others prefer a comfier and looser fit. It all depends on your style and comfort, so keep all of these terms in mind when shopping for clothing online.

Women’s Sizing Terms

  • Regular — While every body is beautiful and different, there is an average range that most women fall into, known as the “regular” size. These sizes cater to women between 5'4" to 5'7" with sizes normally ranging from Small to Extra Large.
  • Petite — Contrary to popular belief, petite sizes aren’t just for women who are below 5'4". Petite size can also be worn by taller women who have a smaller frame in general. Petite sizes are tailored with smaller shoulder widths and shorter sleeve lengths. You’ll see petite sizes designated with a P at the end such as 2P, meaning a size is size 2 petite.
  • Short — Short sizes are meant for women that need clothing in a shorter length, but they don’t necessarily mean that they have smaller proportions. You’ll find short sizes designated with an S at the end for tops and bottoms with shorter lengths.
  • Tall — For women taller than 5'8", there are tall sizes with torso and sleeve lengths that are longer for tops and inseam and trouser lengths that are longer for bottoms.
  • Plus Size — Plus sizes are perfect for women who normally wear clothing size 12 and up, and you’ll find plus sizes starting at XL instead of small, medium, and large. Plus size apparel is generally better for women who want a roomier fit and have a curvier frame.

t-shirt champagne bottle

Different Women’s Fits and Rises

  • Relaxed — Relaxed fit clothing will hang more loosely from your body. Think of the classic boyfriend-style jeans or any oversized sweater, deliberately oversized to allow for more room. You’ll find clothing in relaxed fits, such as relaxed tops or relaxed fit jeans.
  • Slim — For ladies who want tops or trousers with a closer fit, they can get slim fit tops or jeans. The typical slim fit jeans you’ll see include skinny jeans, which have a snugger fit at the ankles.
  • Rise — Different pants, particularly jeans, have different rises, meaning where they fall on your waist. Low rise jeans will sit below your hips, while high rise jeans will sit at or above your waist. Many pants are referred to as mid rise that are intended to sit at your natural waist.

General U.S. Women’s Size Guide

Whenever you’re shopping for clothing online, you’re very likely to come across a variety of size charts. However, if you’re like most people, size charts can be pretty confusing to read at times. Don’t worry: You’re not alone. We’ve put together some information to help you easily read any clothing size guide you come across online.

  • How to Read a Women’s Size Guide — To best figure out which size applies to you, you’ll want to know your measurements in advance. The most commonly used measurements you’ll want to know include your bust and waist measurements. In general, sizes at Avara run from XS to XL, with bust sizes ranging from 30 to 42 inches and waist sizes from 23 to 36 inches. For example, if you’re looking for a top that will fit you well and you normally wear a 35-37 bust size, chances are a size 6-8 top will fit you well. When you’re trying to get a pair of jeans that you normally wear in a large, try getting a 30-31 inch waist pair. At Avara, if you’re not sure which size is yours, we recommend going a size up, depending on your comfort.

the avaraista style size guide

  • The Avaraista Style Size Guide — Because Avara carries a wide variety of styles for so many different brands, including our own, the measurements we list on our boutique’s size chart are meant to be a guideline for fit. Styles from our different brands and designers can vary from one to another, so be sure to read each product’s description for additional information and tips. Keep in mind that boutique sizing tends to run smaller than most national retailers and department stores, so when in doubt, size up!

With all of these tips in mind, any Avaraista will be able to find the perfect size for any of our high-quality and on-trend pieces. From adorable women’s tops and blouses to jeans you’ll love wearing all year long, you’re sure to find pieces that will become your go-tos for a wide variety of occasions. It’s time to pick your look, find your size, and get ready for the compliments coming your way!


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