How To Measure Your Torso for a Swimsuit

In the past, we had to trek down to the mall or our local department store to purchase a swimsuit. This is no longer the case. Online shopping was already gaining popularity in pre-pandemic times, but now the online shopping craze has hit an all-time high.

It’s great to be able to purchase what you need in the comfort of your own home, but there are downfalls to online shopping. One of the biggest obstacles is sizing. 

Unfortunately, not all brands size their swimsuits or clothing the same way, so shopping can feel like a guessing game. The only way to be sure your online purchases will fit well is to take your measurements and follow a sizing chart.

How Do Sizing Charts Work?

When shopping online, it’s important to read the fine print. Although they are not always featured in a bold font or as a clickable icon, most online clothing retailers will have size charts for each of their products.

Though it is not the same for every company, there are a few places where you might find this sizing chart. When you are looking at that tempting “Add to Cart” button, check in the vicinity for a small link to a size chart. When you click on that link, it should take you to a chart that gives more specific details about sizing.

The best ones will give actual measurements so you can determine it down to the centimeter. Some only have the equivalent dress size, but even that will provide a starting point. 

What Do I Need To Do To Measure My Torso?

This is one measurement that can be a little tricky, but with a bit of practice, you’ll be able to get it right! 

  1. Using a cloth (or sometimes soft plastic/rubber) measuring tape, start at the highest point of the shoulder. 
  2. Hold the end of the measuring tape at your shoulder point, then let the rest of the tape drop between your legs. 
  3. Run the tape through the legs and back up around the other side of your body, coming up your back. 
  4. Bring the tape to meet the shoulder where you started, and that’s it!

Why Does Torso Size Matter?

You might be wondering why torso length is important when selecting a swimsuit. It matters not only for sizing purposes but also for the type of suit that you choose. 

Getting the Perfect Fit

When it comes to the ideal fit of a one-piece swimsuit, the torso measurement is crucial. Having a suit that is the right length is essential for a decent fit at the shoulder, hip, and leg opening.

What happens if a suit is too short? The inner thighs can be squeezed tight and pinched, and you might also feel some pulling in the shoulder area. What about if a swimsuit is too long? Let’s just say that no one wants any extra fabric hanging down in the crotch area. Enough said!

In general, a suit is the right length for you if you can fit one to two fingers beneath the shoulder strap without it being too tight. A tiny bit of wiggle room is a good thing! Luckily, you can often find bathing suits in petite or tall versions if your measurements aren’t considered “standard.” 

Choosing the Right Style

When selecting the swimwear you are going to be donning all summer, it’s important to make sure that you feel sexy, confident, and comfortable. A vital part of that is understanding the styles that are best for your body type

For a Long Torso

Long-torsoed ladies can rejoice: though it may be a struggle to find a one-piece that is long enough, you have the versatility to select pretty much any style you want and look great in it.

Some styles that look particularly fetching on women with long torsos include high-waisted bikinis, one-shoulder one-pieces, bandeau tops, and tankinis that have a print on the top and a solid color on the bottom.

For a Short Torso

The key to flattering a short torso is to accentuate the waist, but avoid any styles with harsh lines that cut off in the middle. Monochromatic suits look great on short torsos because they elongate the frame.

The same can be said for bathing suits with a higher-cut leg opening. This does lengthen the leg, but it can also lengthen the body as a whole, including the torso. 

What Else Do I Need To Know About Choosing the Right Suit for My Body Type?

Your torso isn’t the only measurement you need to think about, but it is probably the most important when it comes to swimsuit shopping. There are also other measurements to consider, such as waist circumference, bust size, hips, and overall height.

If you are thinking about the best suits to flatter your body type, we have a few tips. There are three main body types: ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph.


Ectomorphs tend to be tall, long, and lean with limited amounts of body fat. Suits that flatter the ectomorph nicely will have details like ruffles or ruching that add emphasis and feminine detail to certain areas to create the illusion of curves.


Mesomorphs are commonly pear-shaped (though not always). They tend to be athletic and strong but not long and lean. A mesomorph might be described as “solid.” Since pear shapes are common for this body type, consider a printed top with a solid bottom to emphasize the upper body while minimizing the lower body. 


Endomorphs are sometimes also called apple-shaped. They have more body fat, tend to hold weight in the waist area, and gain weight easily. 

Endomorphs will benefit from ruching or a side tie bathing suit. Solid color one-piece suits are also a classic and flattering choice. 


When measuring yourself to get the right bathing suit fit, don’t neglect your torso! It’s not a commonly used measurement for other purposes such as fitness, but it is vital when getting the proper bathing suit measurements. Your body type can also impact the size and type of bathing suit you might choose. Happy shopping! 


What Are the Most Common Body Shapes? | Healthline

Average Waist Size for Women: Measurements, Ratios, and More | Healthline

THE 3 SOMATOTYPES | University of Houston