From shoes … to jeans … to little black dresses, there's no substitute for trying on clothes before you buy. But if you want to skip cramped dressing rooms and crowds and shop online, Jody Rohlena of Consumer Reports ShopSmart says some brand new tools retailers offer can help you pick the right size.
"Our favorite tool was True Fit. It's easy to use. You don't have to do any measuring. You answer a couple of questions, and it recommends a size for you. And it also gives you fit tips about how the garment will fit your body," said Rohlena.
True Fit is available on 15 retailers' sites, including Nordstrom and Lord and Taylor. Some other online retailers are also trying out fitting tools.
"We felt like it was time to really kind of take a look at this emerging technology to see what was out there. And we think there's a lot of promise here, so we hope it will only continue to grow," she said.
Dressipi is a useful tool Consumer Reports ShopSmart looked at that works on Apple devices. You plug in the size you wear in your favorite brand, and the app will tell you the best size in more than 500 other brands.
As for shoes? The tool Shoefitr … helps you compare sizes among hundreds of brands and styles.
"We like that it does a scan of pairs of shoes, so it has a really good, almost like a 3D replica of the shoe. So it can tell you if you wear a size 8 in this particular shoe, maybe you need a 7½ in that shoe," she said.
When it comes to jeans, Levi's' website offers a quiz, so you can ID your curve and find the best fit.
That might be easier than trying on multiple pairs in the store.
And there's also a space-age tool available in a few Bloomingdale's stores. A scanner - like those used in airport security - takes precise measurements of your body and then gives you the right sizes and best fits in dozens of brands. It's like an instant custom fitting and personal buyer all in one.
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