A Basic Guide to Body Measurements

Have you ever ordered an item of clothing online only to realize when it arrives that it just doesn’t fit right? Us too! Unfortunately, because there is a lack of universal sizing, a size 4 in one brand might be worlds apart from size 4 in another. Knowing how to take your own measurements is a great way to ensure that you find the size that fits you best. Use this guide as a reference!

First thing’s first: Grab a tape measure. While you can use belts or ribbons, a soft tape measure really is the best tool for the job. If you have to improvise, avoid using string because it could have some elasticity that will compromise the accuracy of your measurements.

Your Waist

Make sure when taking your waist measurement that your tape measure is against your skin. This is necessary for the most accurate reading. But first, to measure your waist, you need to find your waist. As a general rule, your natural waistline is above your belly button, but below your ribcage. If this area just doesn’t seem right, try bending to the side. That crease is your natural waistline!

Now that you’ve located your waistline, wrap the tape measure around you, making sure your tape measure is secure – not too tight, and not too loose. Once you feel good about how the tape measure fits around you, jot down your number.

(image via nm state)

Your Hips

To properly measure your hips, start by placing the end of your tape measure on one of your hips, wrap it around your body, over your booty, past your second hip, and back to the starting point. To get the most accurate reading, make sure your tape measure has gone over the fullest part of your booty. A full-length mirror can help to ensure that you’ve got the tape measure completely wrapped around you (and is straight).

(image via cashmerette)

Your Bust

If you wear a bra, keep it on to ensure your measurement is accurate and true to how you’ll be wearing pieces. To measure your bust, wrap the tape measure around the area across both of your nipples and straight across your back.

(image via my green closet)

Now, it’s not unheard of that a piece of clothing will call for more obscure measurements such as neck or ribcage, but more often than not, these are the measurements you should know, especially if you’re an avid online shopper!

Sources: Clothing Patterns 101, Magic Linen, Size Charter

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