top of page
  • Writer's pictureNikki

B Belly Tips: What is a fit model?

Have you ever wondered why a particular clothing brand doesn't seem to fit you properly, despite being in your usual size range? The answer lies in the concept of fit models, individuals whose body measurements and proportions serve as a basis for designing and fitting clothes. A brand will take that person's measurements and then scale them up or down to fulfill their desired size range. Understanding the role of fit models can help us appreciate the diversity of bodies and recognize that if a brand doesn't fit us, it's more about them and less about us! Not to be confused with editorial models, the models you see on websites for clothing retailers, in catalogs, and on commercials, these models wear the clothing and show it off, but they are not the fit model of the brand. Fit models are usually regular people like you and me. They don't appear in advertisements, you don't see them on commercials or the covers of websites. In fact, most brands are very hush hush when it comes to who their fit models are! So now that we know the difference, let's dive deeper into the world of fit models!

The Purpose and Role of Fit Models:

Fit models play a crucial role in the fashion industry, helping designers and brands create garments that align with a specific size range and aesthetic. They serve as a physical representation of a brand's target customer, embodying the measurements and proportions that the brand aims to fit. Fit models work closely with designers and pattern makers to ensure that garments are well-fitted and comfortable for their designated size range.

Why Fit Models Matter:

Fit models serve as a reference point for brands, enabling them to create clothing that accommodates the measurements and proportions of a specific group of people. However, it's essential to acknowledge that fit models represent a limited range of body types - similar to when plus size brands only show models with flat stomachs, and may not accurately reflect the vast diversity of real bodies. This discrepancy between fit model measurements and individual body types can lead to challenges when finding clothes that fit perfectly, especially if you have a B Belly! It also serves as the reason why straight size clothing (sizes XL and XXL) fit different than plus size clothing in its equivalent (1X and 2X).

Understanding Body Diversity:

It's crucial to recognize that the fashion industry has traditionally favored a narrow range of body types, often promoting unrealistic beauty standards, even in the plus size world. However, in recent years, there has been a growing movement towards inclusivity. We are witnessing brands embracing diverse models, offering extended size ranges, and redefining beauty norms.

Let's take a look at a few brand's fit models (which are usually VERY hush hush, so it's hard to find!!) and see if they are shaped like you!

Old Navy:

This is Lisa, and she is one of Old Navy's extended size fit model. She is a size 18. Does her body look like yours?


This is Mia, and she is one of the fit models for the plus size swim line at Target. She does not list her size.

This is Tricia, she is a fit model for Target as well as a professional commercial model. She does not list her current size.


This is Margarita and she is one of Torrid's fit models, her current size is not listed.

Lane bryant:

This is Ashlei and she is one of Lane Bryant's fit models, her size is also not available.

If a Brand Doesn't Fit You:

If you find that a particular brand's clothing doesn't fit you well, it's important to remember that it is not a reflection of your body or your worth. Instead, it could simply be due to the fact that the brand's fit model measurements do not align with yours. Bodies come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, and no one fit model can represent them all. It's essential to celebrate your unique body and seek out brands that cater to your specific measurements and proportions.

Tips for Finding the Right Fit:

  1. Know your measurements: Understanding your own body measurements is a key step in finding clothes that fit well. Take accurate measurements of your bust, waist, hips, and other relevant areas to help you choose the right size and fit. If you need help, I wrote a blog post all about how, you can read it here.

  2. Explore diverse brands: Look for brands that prioritize inclusivity and offer extended size ranges. These brands are more likely to have fit models that represent a broader range of body types, increasing your chances of finding a better fit.

  3. Read customer reviews: Customer reviews can provide valuable insights into how a brand's clothing fits different body types. Reading reviews can help you make more informed decisions when shopping online or in-store.

  4. Try different styles: Remember that even within a brand, different styles and cuts may fit differently. Experiment with different styles, silhouettes, and fabric types to find what fits your body the most.

Understanding the role of fit models in the fashion industry helps us realize that clothing not fitting well is not a personal failing. Instead, it highlights the need for greater representation and inclusivity in the industry. Embrace the diversity of bodies and seek out brands that prioritize inclusivity and cater to your specific measurements. Remember, your body is unique, beautiful, and deserving of clothing that fits you perfectly and makes you feel confident.



bottom of page