Measuring Tips

Tips for Measuring Prom and Formal Dresses

You want to be sure that your prom dress or formal gown fits like a glove, so we've created an easy-to-follow measuring guide to help you achieve the perfect fit for comfortable wear throughout the night. Reference this guide and take accurate measurements before you order your prom dress to minimize the amount of alterations needed between the moment you receive your prom gown and prom night. Make sure to follow each step carefully so that you don't need to exchange your dress or make repeated trips to the tailor in order to make your new prom dress fit properly.

The formal dress market is unique in that dresses sell very quickly and the production time is longer than a regular clothing item, due to beading, fabrics and other details that need to be done by hand. Because of this, it's very important that you get your order in early and accurately. Our specialists take every precaution to ensure that we will be shipping the best size for you before alterations.

We're sure with these tips you'll get a perfect-fitting dress that will turn heads on your big night out. If you have any questions or concerns, our team is standing by to assist in any way to ensure you are completely satisfied with your dress.
Prom Dress Measuring Tips

  • Formal dresses typically run smaller than regular-sized clothing. It is not unusual to have to go up one or two sizes, depending on style, cut and fabric. Because of this, it's important to order your dress based on your measurements, not the numbered clothing size that you normally wear.
  • Use a ribbon-style, clothing tape measure to ensure that you can accurately measure each and every curve.
  • Stand comfortably, with equal weight on both feet to find a grounded, steady stance. Let your arms rest easily at your sides and relax your stomach muscles. If you take your measurements while you're standing in an unnatural posture, be prepared to spend your entire prom night standing in the same uncomfortable position just to get your dress to fit you properly.
  • Enlist the help of others. Ask someone else to measure you because measuring yourself will distort your shape.
  • Measure very carefully to avoid causing unnecessary need for alterations.
  • Bust: Make sure to remember that your bust measurements are not related in any way to your bra size. Measure around the fullest part of your bust.
  • Waist: Measure your natural waistline, about 1.5 inches above your belly button. This should be a snug measurement, with the tape measure held taut. The waist is the most fitted part of most formal gowns.
  • Hips: Measure the fullest part of your hips to get an accurate waist measurement for a prom dress or formal gown. This is a very important measurement for fitted mermaid prom gowns.

There are size charts with instructions included on each and every prom dress product page on the Prom Headquarters website. These will help you translate your measurements into a dress size before you place your order. Every designer uses a different sizing chart, so be sure to use the one that is included on page of the specific dress that you are planning to order. If you use a chart from the wrong designer you could end up with a dress that doesn't fit you at all.

If you have any problems with your measurements or sizing, please feel free to call our talented customer service team toll-free at 866-866-0968. We'll do our best to help you determine which size is best for you. However, please keep in mind that we can only do so much over the phone and that the final decision is yours to make.

Once you've placed your order, someone from our Fashion Consultant team will confirm that you have ordered the correct size based on your measurements. Do keep in mind that our dresses come in standard sizes. We can't offer alterations on online orders, but we do recommend that you find a tailor with eveningwear experience if you find that you need to have your dress altered.