If you've ever tried to buy clothes online from Asia, then you know that sizing can be confusing.

Figuring out your Asian size and how it corresponds with sizes in the US, UK, and EU can be a real puzzle—especially if you haven't done it before.

China, the largest exporter of the clothing industry, gained a market value of $146 billion in 2021.

Top textile exporting countries wordlwide - Data Infographic

So, knowing how to convert Asian sizes into US, UK, and EU sizes is a must if you want to participate in the international trade of apparel.

In this article, we'll help decode the mystery of Asian sizing so that you're able to match up your measurements correctly!

What does Asian size mean?

Asian size refers to the standard sizing system used for clothing and shoes designed to fit the typical body measurements of people in Asian countries.

This includes measurements for the bust, waist, and hips for clothing, as well as length and width for shoes.

Asian size conversion means the sizing guideline that is considered standard for Asians and is used for measuring the differences with other countries. 

A size conversion chart helps importers understand the differences when those products are produced for global clients. 

Asian Size to US, UK, and EU Sizes for men

Let's simplify this process for men's clothing and shoes, so you can shop with confidence.

Men's clothing

Purchase clothing products from Asia
Source

When it comes to men's clothing, size differences can be significant, which is why size conversion is so important.

That said, no matter the size difference, having the essential body parts measured can save you a lot of hassle.

Globally, sizes like S, M, and L differ, but the measuring process is the same. The body measurements remain consistent even though body stature varies.

Here are the key measurements for men's clothing:

  • Neck. Around the base of the neck, allowing for a loose fit.
  • Sleeve. From the middle of the back of the neck to the wrist bone. 
  • Chest. The circumference of the chest from under the armpits.
  • Waist. Around the narrow part of the waistline. 
  • Inside leg measurement (Inseam). From where the leg starts to the ankle.

Analyzing this information helps you understand the physical differences among different countries. This way, you can determine which sizes will fit your target audience when importing from Asia.

Still, it's often wise to purchase larger sizes from Asia to ensure a proper fit.

For example, here’s a comparison of a size L male top (shirt, t-shirt, etc.) between Asian and American measurements, based on the Nike size chart:

MeasurementAsiaUS
Chest (in.)38 - 40.541 - 44
Waist (in.)33.5 - 3635 - 38
Hip (in.)38 - 4041 - 44

Note: Clothing measurement will vary depending on the type. For example, undergarments require additional measurements.

Now, here is the conversion chart of male clothes from Asian sizes to US, UK, and EU sizes:

AsiaUSUKEU
XS34/27342XS
44
S38/28-2936XS
46
M39/30-3138S
48
L40/32-3340M
50
XL42/34-3542L
52
2XL44/36-3744XL
54

Men's shoes

To convert shoe sizes accurately, you need to know your users' foot measurements. Here's how to measure feet for the correct shoe size:

  • Take a piece of paper larger than your foot and place your foot on it.
  • Using a ruler or measuring tape, measure the length from the heel to the tip of the longest toe.
  • Add 0.5 inches to the length to ensure a comfortable fit.
Take notice when converting sizes for shoes
Source: Dugarco

It's also recommended to take foot measurements at night when your foot is at its largest size.

Here's the shoe size conversion list for men:

AsiaLength
(Heel to Toe)
USUKEU
ChinaVietnamIndiaJapanS. Korea----
3421.52.52121021 cm3N/A34.5
34.522321.521521.5 cm3.5335
3522.53.52222022 cm43.535.5
35.523422.522522.5 cm4.5436
3623.54.52323023 cm54.537
36.524523.523523.5 cm5.5537.5
3724.55.52424024 cm65.538
37.525624.524524.5 cm6.5638.5
3825.55.52525025 cm76.539
38.526725.525525.5 cm7.5740
3926.57.52626026 cm87.541
39.527826.526526.5 cm8.5842
4027.58.52727027 cm98.543
40.528927.527527.5 cm9.5943.5
4128.59.52828028 cm109.544
41.5291028.528528.5 cm10.51044.5
4229.510.52929029 cm1110.545
42.5301129.529529.5 cm11.51145.5
4330.511.53030030 cm1211.546

Asian Size to US, UK, and EU sizes for women

In this section, we'll break down how to convert Asian sizes for women's clothing and shoes, making your shopping experience seamless and stress-free.

Women's clothes

There are four main body parts to measure for women's clothing:

  • Bust. Under the arms, the circumference of the full bust. 
  • Waist. The narrow part of the waist.
  • Hip. The fullest part of the hip.
  • Leg. From the top of the leg to the angle.

Here’s an example of an M-size women's top (shirt, t-shirt, etc.) measurement difference between Asian and American sizes, based on the Nike size chart:

MeasurementAsiaUS
Bust (in.)33.5-3535.5-38
Waist (in.)28-29.529-31.5
Hip (in.)36.5-3838.5-41

However, the conversion size of women's clothing can be puzzling depending on the country of your target audience.

Your target customer

For example, while letter systems like S, M, L, and XL are universal, the EU uses a number system relating to actual measurements (e.g., 30, 32, 34, etc.).

In the US, women's clothing sizes are based on various body proportions:

  • Misses. Sizes start from zero and go up to 16, ranging from extra small to large; designed for American women with hourglass-shaped bodies.
  • Junior. Sizes are in odd numbers (e.g., 1, 3, 5) and are slightly smaller than Misses; for women with a smaller bust.
  • Petite and Tall. These terms relate to height rather than body shape. Petite is for women up to 5'4", and Tall is for women over 5'7".
  • Plus size/Women's size. For larger sizes, typically 18 and above. The definition of plus size can vary.

To avoid confusion, it’s best to check with suppliers about clothing conversions.

On that note, here is the women's clothing size conversion chart:

AsiaUSUKEU
XS242XS
32
S46XS
34
M68S
36
L810M
38
XL1012L
40
2XL1214XL
42

Women's shoes

Like women's clothing, women's foot to has size differences, such as women's shoe measurement in the US is five to 10.5; in the UK is between three to eight, and in Europe, 5.5 to 42. 

Women's shoe sizes in the US
Source

Here's the shoe size conversion chart of Asian women to the US, the UK, and EU women:

AsiaLength
(Heel to Toe)
USUKEU
ChinaVietnamIndiaJapanS. Korea----
352122222022 cm43.536.5
35.521.52.522.522522.5 cm4.5437
362232323023 cm54.537.5
36.522.53.523.523523.5 cm5.5538
372342424024 cm65.539
37.523.54.524.524524.5 cm6.5640
382452525025 cm76.540.5
38.524.55.525.525525.5 cm7.5741
392562626026 cm87.541.5
39.525.56.526.526526.5 cm8.5842
402672727027 cm98.542.5

Asian Size to US, UK, and EU Sizes for children

Let's find out US, UK, and EU sizes for children's clothing and shoes below:

Children's clothes

Measuring baby clothes is relatively simple, as babies don't develop much physically until a certain age.

Hence, the UK and US measure clothing based on children's age, while in Europe, the clothes are measured based on the child's height in centimeters.

In the US, the clothing size of newborns and toddlers is measured by weight in pounds and height in inches.

Clothing size of newborns
Source

Here's a chart for converting baby clothing sizes. The letter 'T' in the US means 'Toddler.' 

AsiaUS
(month)
UK
(month)
EU
(cm)
China
(cm)
Japan
(cm)
Korea
(Ibs)
---
10510074T3-498-104
115110954-5104-110
115110965-6110-116
125120116X-76-7116-122
125120137 to 87-8122-128
135130139 to 108-9128-134
14514015109-10134-140
155150171110-11140-146 cm
165160171411-12146-152 cm

Clothing measurements become more specific for older children as they develop distinct physical attributes, requiring separate measurements for boys and girls. These measurements include chest, waist, hips, inseam, and height.

In the US and UK, girls' clothing sizes are typically based on age, whereas in Europe, sizes are based on height in centimeters.

AgeUS (age)UK (age)EU (cm)
-BoyGirlBoyGirlBoyGirl
4-5554-54-5104-110104-110
5-6665-65-6110-116110-116
6-76X-76X-76-76-7116-122116-122
7-87 to 87 to 87-87-8122-128122-128
8-99 to 109 to 108-98-9128-134128-134
9-1010109-109-10134-140134-140
10-11111110-1110-11140-146140-146
11-12141411-1211-12146-152146-152

Children’s shoes

When it comes to converting kids' shoe sizes, there's generally no difference based on gender or size. However, most countries categorize baby shoes based on age groups, such as newborns and toddlers.

In the US, babies' shoe sizes range from 0C to 10C (newborn to 4 years old), and youth shoe sizes range from 1Y to 7Y (one year to seven years old).

Babies' shoe size
Source

Here's a baby shoe size chart based on the baby's foot in inches and centimeters:

Foot length in inchesFoot length in CMUSUKEU
5"12.7 cm5C4.520.5
5 1/4"13.3 cm6C5.521.5
5 5/8"14.2 cm7C6.523
6"15.0 cm8C7.524.5
6 1/4"15.7 cm9C8.525.5
6 5/8"16.6 cm10C9.527
6 7/8"17.3 cm11C10.528
7 1/8"17.9 cm12C11.529
7 3/8"18.8 cm13C12.530.5
7 5/8"19.5 cm1Y13.531.5
8"20.4 cm2Y1.533
8 3/8"21.3 cm3Y2.534.5

Children's shoe sizes start to differ slightly as they grow older. Here is the shoe conversion chart for children aged 12 and up:

Foot length in inchesFoot length in CMUSUKEU
6.625"16.810.59.527
6.75"17.1111028
7"17.811.510.529
7.125"18.1121130
7.25"18.412.511.530
7.5"19.1131231
7.625"19.413.512.531
7.75"19.711332
8"20.31.51433
8.125"20.62133
8.25"212.51.534
8.5"21.63234
8.625"21.93.52.535
8.75"22.24336
9"22.94.53.536
9.125"23.25437
9.25"23.55.54.537
9.5"24.16538
9.625"24.46.55.538
9.75"24.87639

How do you pick the right conversion size, Asian to the US, UK, and EU size?

Selecting the correct conversion size ensures you have the right products, can meet clients' expectations, and cut down the number of returns. 

Here's how you can effectively pick the right conversion size:

1. Get a size conversion chart from your suppliers

As Asian clothes and shoes tend to be smaller than those of the US, the UK, and the EU, the best thing to do is ask your shoe and clothing product suppliers for the conversion chart. 

2. Use a size chart app

If you’re dropshipping or running an online store, size chart apps like the Shopify size chart app can be incredibly useful for size conversion.

These apps often come with features that help automate and simplify the process.

3. Make sure your charts are clear and comprehensive

In addition to providing a detailed size chart, make the chart user-friendly, especially if you have an international audience.

Consider including:

  • Actual measurements. Include the exact measurements of garments or shoes instead of relying solely on general size classifications. This allows customers to compare the chart with their own measurements and select the correct size.
  • Multiple conversions. If you have an international audience, including size options like Japanese, Indian, European, and UK sizes can help reduce confusion and improve customer satisfaction.

Summary

Before we go to the conclusion, we've created a quick summary of this article for you, so you can easily remember it:

  • Knowing standards is good, but knowing a specific country's standard is a better approach when importing from any Asian country. So, before getting started, study the sizing of the items carefully. 
  • Know the body proportion differences if you are creating your own conversion chart. 
  • To avoid unforeseen trouble in calculating, it is always better to check your supplier and ask for the conversion chart. 
  • Take advantage of chart conversion apps available online. 
  • Refrain from buying Asian free-size clothing or shoes.

Final thoughts

There you have it: a guide to converting Asian sizes to US, UK, and EU sizes!

Clothing and shoe size conversion can be really tricky. And even though you know the measurement, mistakes can occur. 

To avoid issues, always check with your supplier and ask for a detailed conversion chart. If one supplier doesn't provide it, another likely will.

Good luck with your sizing conversions and happy shopping!

Want to learn more about ecommerce?

Ready to move your online store to the next level? Check out the articles below:

Plus, don't forget to check out our in-depth how to start an online store guide here.

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