Online Shopping | How to Find Your Size



In a perfect world, my body fat would be placed evenly on my body. In this world, I carry the majority of my weight in my midsection. I don’t have the luck of having a tiny waist and proportionate hips.

This makes the plus size models online frustrating. These women don’t even appear to be plus size. How do I know what size to order? The size chart should be of some assistance, right?Not only is it hard to find clothes in the store, but ordering clothes online is like Russian roulette.


These are my “Beyond the Size Chart” tips:

Know your measurements

The first step in understanding the size chart is to know your measurements. If you don’t already, you should always have a tape measure on hand. You will need the circumference of your bust, waist, and hips. Be sure your measurements are taken at the largest point of your bust and hips. Your waist measurement should be taken at your “true waist”, which is the narrowest part of your torso. If you are on the hunt for pants, be sure have a friend help with your leg inseam.

For real size women, it is important to know you have a dominant measurement. No matter what the size chart says, always order according to the largest part of yourself. You can have an item taken in but you can never add more fabric. Off the rack items have a standard sizing rules; a regular inseam for pants is 32 inches, most dresses measure about 45-50 inches from back to bottom.

A few suggestions additional suggestions,  it’s good to know that if your leg inseam is longer than 32 inches you need pants with longer inseams 33 1/2-34 inches. The reverse would go for women with inseams shorter than 30-31 inches.

Ladies with short inseams check SimplyBe there pants run small. I found that even their regular inseam is 30-31 inches. Are you a long tall drink of water? Torrid is offering some of their selections in extra long. ASOS has a collection especially for tall women and a few plus size option in tall. Also, check out sites like Long Tall Sally and Long Elegant Legs.

Every Designer is a Cut From a Different Cloth…Literally!

Every brand is different, some will run small and some will run larger. A good rule of the thumb is the cheaper the clothes the smaller the fit.  Brands like Forever 21+, Charlotte Russe, and Wet Seal + are juniors plus which means they run a full size smaller. Straight sizing can also run large I have found that Old Navy runs very large.  More expensive brands with better fabric tend to run true to size in sportswear. Formal clothing runs small across the board I would recommend sizing up if you are unfamiliar with the brand.

Read the Reviews

I have a hard time buying anything that has not already been purchased and reviewed online. Some stores like ModCloth. Torrid, Forever 21, and IGIG have enabled the ability to add a picture in the review section.  Real clothes on real women score!!  Just be sure to check the reviews before you checkout. People tend to express their discontent quickly when an item runs small or is made from unforgiving fabric.

Eye and Buy

I do love online shopping but, I am not above checking out what is on the shelves. I love Torrid, Forever 21+, Nordstrom Rack,  and Ava & Viv for Target.  I can have an item on my wish list and see it in the store and be happy that I didn’t buy it. I can look online and test my hypothesis in store. Nothing will truly ever beat time spent in the dressing room, but a girl can try.

Doing Hard Time at Dressing Room Prison 

Online shopping can be a cop out because you hate trying on clothes at the store. My advice to that is get over it! There is no way around it and besides isn’t returning an item more of a hassle.  Pick up your true standby pieces and a few wild cards and don’t get discouraged. Stop taking it personally when something doesn’t fit. There are times when I try on everything and nothing works. I accept that the universe doesn’t want me to have a new outfit. If you want the fit you’ve got to try it on.

In all honesty, there are no perfect fits here ladies. We are shopping off the rack. If you want a custom fit, you will want to consider seeking a tailor. Brands make clothes on a fit model who have measurements that sell. I hope these tips lead you to consistently finding clothes you love!

Dress; Torrid, Shoes; Michael Antonio(old), Flowers; H&M, Earring ;Charming Charlie (in store clearance) 

I’m showing off my great online buy from Torrid. I love Torrid because the cut and the fit is consistent with my body type. What brands work best with you shape? Share your stories in the comments below. 

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6 responses to “Online Shopping | How to Find Your Size”

  1. So true! I’m also in the middle and I have the hardest time! Thanks for the tips. I will definitely put them to good use!!

  2. Great Tips! I rely want to purchase a dress from New Look but I’m not sure about their online sizing. I know they run smaller than ASOS but idk how much smaller…guess I’ll be pulling out my measuring tape!

    1. Yes, measuring tape is a must!! Especially when the fabric has little to no Lycra or stretch!! You have to know your measurements and know your body type.

  3. Great tips! Haven’t heard of Simply Be or the shops for taller women but these are great resources. Thx

    1. Thanks for reading Stephanie!! Yes the options for tall ladies are out there but you got to know where to look!!

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