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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Am I crazy, or is leotard sizing gaining vanity sizing as well?


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Hi Everyone!


Just a quick question... I have noticed within the last year, it seems as though the sizing of leotards has adopted "vanity sizes"


For example, I have always been a small or medium in leotards, and now I routinely fit into a petite... am I crazy??


Anyone else had to size down recently?




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I've noticed that as well-- not so much in the width but in the girth. I am tall and would have to go up to a large usually for girth but have been more recently fitting into many more mediums (Natalie, Bal Togs, and Capezio). I am wondering if the stretchier materials they are now using may be part of it.

I know Gaynor Minden has recently tweaked the fit on many of their leotards-- in their case the leotards are not necessarily bigger, but just have an improved fit, especially for taller dancers.

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  • 1 month later...

ugh. yes. I've ordered a few leos in the recent past. I'm a bigger and older person now and the smalls (which used to be the *perfect* fit) are a little big. it's awful. I don't want to order petite b/c that's probably a little too small. ergh :/

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I kinda like being an xs or p again. :P Even if I know it's vanity sizing. Haha! I guess that's why it's called "Vanity Size"!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hmm! I only have two leos and they are both Body Wrappers. They are both larges, though, so if anything at least this brand is not vanity sizing. In their tights I bought a L/XL. I'm a pretty solid size 4 in regular U.S. clothing, and a 38 EUR, and just assumed the entire clothing market for ballet would be sized according to smaller norms so I just grabbed larges from the get-go.

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Agree with NoTwoSnowflakes--- my bodywrappers leo is a good 3 sizes bigger than what I wear in street clothes. I also have a Capezio leo, and that's only slightly larger than what I wear in street clothes. So I guess it depends on the brand!

Edited by finnedballerina
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  • 1 month later...

I've been waiting for some new leotards to arrive so I could report back to this thread!


I ordered three medium size leotards (Bloch, Natalie, and Wear Moi) and all of them 'should' have fit, given that I've been a medium size for the last 30 years and haven't suddenly shrunk! I'm 5'0' and about [ ] pounds but have a long torso so smalls are invariably too short.


I bought the same Bloch 3/4 sleeve leotard that I have had continuously since about 1990 and it is a little bit too big, but acceptably so. The Natalie 3/4 sleeve is bigger than I think it should be, but again being 3/4 sleeve it holds itself up. However, the Wear Moi camisole is massive! It just bags all over the place, and the torso is too long. Unfortunately I'm not going to send it back because the seller is in the US and I'm in Australia so it's just too much of a pain. I have a feeling that the Wear Moi are more geared towards longer torsos so I should have ordered down one size.


The difficulty is that according to the size charts of all three, I'm still a medium. Which means that they haven't updated their size charts in a while.


I think from now on I will assume that I'm a size smaller and go with that. :)

Edited by dancemaven
Removed weight per Bt4D policy.
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I've not seen evidence of this!!! In street clothing I wear a size 4 /small even an ex small in BEBE brand but in Wear Moi ballet wear I have to order a large ballet dress or it just isn't long enough in the torso!

Maybe you are just getting smaller??

I wish there was some vanity sizing in ballet wear....I hate having to order large tights and large leos, dresses and unitards when I am a size 4 most of the time in street wear ;(

What on earth do actually large people do!!!!!????

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Interesting BlleFille! There must be a massive difference in how leotards are cut, even within the same brand. I was panicking because the review on the particular Natalie leotard I bought said to buy two sizes smaller and that it was ridiculously huge, but it actually fit relatively close to the sizing chart.


With the Wear Moi leotard it may have a lot to do with the fabric my leotard is made from. It is that really soft material that is somewhere between cotton and lycra and seems to have masses of stretch to it. Maybe the dresses are cut differently?


I have to say that this is why I would prefer to buy my leotards locally but, in Australia at least, a Bloch leotard will cost me at least 50% more than if I get it sent over from the States! It would be a lot easier if we could actually try them on first!


ETA: as for people who don't fit into ballet gear, there are some 'plus size' (how I hate that term) leotards out, or you do what I did when I was pregnant and go for the leggings and singlet (tank top) option with a wrap skirt.

Edited by NotDoneDancing
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I think "vanity sizing" is all relative-- meaning what we are used to seeing in ballet clothes, because the sizes do nothing for my vanity! Like some of the others in this thread, I am a size 2 or 4 in "regular" clothes, but a medium/large in ballet clothes. I don't really care about what the label says (at least I pretend not to care!), but it is annoying trying to figure out the fit, the sizing charts can be waaay off. In Bloch I am always a large, but I can't even wear Wear Moi-- the larges are too large (too wide on top) the mediums too short. Same with Mirella. Yumikos are very stretchy and larges are true to "ballet size"-- but you have to be careful as certain styles can emphasize "armpit fat".

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