The size label on an item of clothing is just a number that helps you to correctly identify the subset of clothes that you should take to the dressing room. It does not define who you are or make you stylish (or unstylish). What does project a great sense of style is flattering and attractive fit. So instead of the number on the label, focus on how a clothing item hangs on your body, and how it moves when you move. 

This sounds simple and obvious, but it is easier said than done. For many women, clothing size is a very emotional thing. Their identity is tied to a certain size, but it no longer fits them. This might be the result of changes in the size specifications for the brands they like, or it might be that their body has changed over time. Whatever the reason, sizing up can have a negative effect on their psyche and body image. But as I suggest to my clients, it is important to let go of the number and size up when you need to. More often than not the extra room in the garment actually makes the wearer look more slender than wearing an item that’s a dash too small. It’s a win-win situation because all goals are met — as long as you ignore the number on the size label.

Although we normally associate this issue with being attached to a smaller size, it does also go the other way. Some of my tall clients believe they need to wear an XL and have a hard time accepting that a smaller item is right for them even when they are drowning in the larger size. So sometimes I have to be quite assertive about the large or sometimes even the medium being the more flattering fit. Again, it’s a win-win situation if you focus on the fit and not the size.

Correctly fitting clothing goes a long way to achieving proportions and silhouettes that showcase your body in the best possible way. When something does not fit, it’s never your body that is wrong. It’s merely a question of finding a better fit, be that through a different size or a different item altogether. Feel empowered by the sizes that are available to you, and don’t get hung up on the number on the size label. You have the freedom to choose how an item should fit. Use it.