Courtesy of Lane BryantBecca Gross, Lucky magazine
Savvy plus-size shoppers know that the best, most modern looks are often found exclusively online. But once you've found THE dress you've been searching for, what size do you order? You want to believe the size charts, but can you?
To help you out, I've pulled some pieces from my own closet and compared them to each other, as well as to pieces from Lane Bryant, since I think most of us know what size we wear there. That should give you an idea of how each e-tailer's sizing runs, and will hopefully allow you to choose the correct size right away.
Read more: 8 Ways to Change Up Your Beauty Routing for Fall
First: skirts. I compared a size 18 trumpet skirt from Lane Bryant, a size 16 pencil skirt from ASOS and a 1x pencil skirt from Kiyonna.
The LB and ASOS skirts have exactly the same waist opening. The LB skirt is considerably more hippy, which works great on an hourglass figure. The ASOS skirt's knit fabric stretches pretty well, as does the Kiyonna skirt, though it looks a bit smaller than the others. Stretch = forgiving, so slap on a shaper and go with the smaller size.
If you're in doubt, remember that ASOS and Kiyonna have free shipping both ways (though Kiyonna's has some catches and ASOS has a time limit), so go ahead and order additional sizes.
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Next: tops. I've got a 2x shrug from Kiyonna ($40), a 14/16 top from Lane Bryant ($44.95) (see above image), and a size 16 blouse from ASOS.
The narrowest torso of the batch is the 2x shrug. It barely hooks over my chest, though I find their tops aren't usually that snug. I don't currently have any full tops from Kiyonna because I'm short-waisted-their tops are often too long for me, and can be difficult to alter. The shoulder seams are all pretty close, but the LB top has a little more room for a bust. The ASOS top is just fine if I stay still, but as soon as I move, it pulls a bit. Verdict: You're probably safe ordering your LB size from ASOS. However, Kiyonna tops run a bit small, so unless you're a perfect hourglass, you might want to size up.
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