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Online Shopping Tips

Don’t you hate it when you get something in the mail that you ordered online and it doesn’t fit right?  Or it just isn’t what it appeared to be?  I am no expert at making purchases online.  But I do have a few tricks that I am giving away so our online purchases will make us delighted instead of frustrated.  Below you’ll find my secrets for finding better fits for clothing purchased online, without trying it on.  Because most of us can’t tell how something is going to fit our body on the hanger.

My face when I get the mail. :)

My face when I get the mail. 🙂

Woman Being Shocked By Delivery by franky242 via

5)  Look carefully at how the clothes fit the model. Duh, right?  But I think what I’m trying to say here is to look CAREFULLY.  Here’s some examples.

One of my pet peeves is where shoulder seams hit.  There’s a trend right now to have shoulder seams hit about mid-bicep.  This isn’t what I’m referring to (although you should probably note that, if that’s not the look you’re going for).  I’m talking about if the shoulder seam sits right at the top of the shoulder or if it hits slightly off.  For me, having them hit slightly off makes my already broad shoulders appear much broader.  Lots of cheap clothing isn’t tailored well and one thing I look for first.

See how this shirt’s shoulder seams are past the end of her shoulders.  This is a great look for ladies who need to broaden their shoulders but a terrible look for those of us with muscular shoulders.  🙂  That small little shirring at the shoulder (did you notice that?  if not, you didn’t look close enough!) is also going to make my shoulders look even bigger!

Thumbnail Image of Color Swatch 0473 Image of Gingham Henley Tunic

Loft Gingham Henley

Do you see how this one is better?  The shoulder seams are just a bit higher, hitting more on the start of the shoulder blade?

Primary Image of Utility Blouse

Loft Utility Blouse

Other examples are-  is the shirt fitted all the way down or does it fall away from the body?  Pants are very difficult to buy without trying on but pay attention to what KIND of pant you’re looking for.  If you have a curvy body, straight fits might not work well on you.

The best advice I can give you here is this- if it doesn’t fit the model well, stay away!  There’s no hope for the piece if it doesn’t fit the “desirable” body type!

4) That leads me into the next part of shopping online.  Pay attention to the description and check out all the photos.  Again, if skinny jeans aren’t your favorite, then don’t be looking at pants that are described as skinny!  Or body skimming.  Or fitted through the leg.  Most good clothing companies are going to give you all the important details of the piece in the description.  If you don’t want back flap pockets then you better be reading the description. Another big tip, never buy a pant online without seeing the backview.  If there’s no back view picture, forget it.  WALK AWAY.  How can you tell if the pockets hit high or low?  (If you’ve forgotten, never buy jeans with high, small back pockets!) So what I’m saying here, if there isn’t a good description, be weary.  Like buying a swimsuit that says shelf bra in top.  Do you need cups?  Do you need shaping?  If you can’t see more, you might end up with a trainer bra that wouldn’t have worked for you in junior high!

I’m just going to make a big generalization here, but I find it true.  The cheaper the piece, the less description there will be!  If they are leaving out important details like the fabric or there’s only a front shot, keep in mind there might be some surprises when you get it in the mail.

3)  Know your body.  This one goes for shopping anywhere.  Do you have a long torso?  Do you have long legs?  A small waist?  Or broad shoulders?  A big bust?  Some of these things need to be taken into consideration.  A bigger hipped lady needs a curvy fit.  If you have long legs, you might need a tall length.  A big bust, be careful that the button top you’re eyeing will close over the girls.  The more you know about your body, the easier it is to narrow down what will work on you and what won’t.

2)  Again, I’m telling you a picture is worth a thousand words.  Look very carefully at the picture. Zoom in.  Do you know the differences between fabrics?  Is this garment 100% cotton, be careful that it might shrink.  Does it have more than 2% spandex, it might fit more like workout gear.  Does the fabric wrinkling strangely?  Does it lay right?  How about the color.  Don’t go by what it looks like on your phone.  Check on your computer if color is an issue.  Here’s another big tip- what’s the coloring of the model who’s wearing the piece?  Is she blonde and fair?  Or olive skinned and brunette?  That

1)  Read reviews, especially on swimwear and shoes.  Do they fit true to size or are they running narrow?  Are some girls complaining about the torso length?  If you’re buying boots, remember the calf width.  Some fabulous boots won’t go over my thicker legs.

Clearly there are no guarantees.  But with these tips, hopefully you’ll get better at the shot in the dark buying clothing online can be.  I say, practice makes perfect.  😉


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