Children outgrowing their clothes is inevitable. It seems that as soon as parents figure out infant sizes, their child has moved on to toddler clothes. The switch from toddler sizes to kids sizes can be even more confusing.
There is no standard size guide for retailers or manufacturers when it comes to clothing. This can cause frustration for parents whose children fit into different sizes at different stores.
In the United States, Great Britain, and Australia, kids sizes are typically measured by age. Other parts of the world use height and weight to determine sizes, which can be an easier system to navigate.
If your toddler is reaching the top of the T sizing scale, you may be wondering what size comes after 5T? Below is our comprehensive guide that breaks down the transition from toddler to children’s sizes.
What is Size 5T?
For most retailers, size 5T is the largest toddler size available. For toddler clothing, the number of the size represents the average age that size fits. The “T” represents toddler since there is some overlap with the kid’s size. Size 5T is the size that an average 5-year-old would wear.
Since toddler and kids sizes are not standard across retailers, it is important to know your child’s measurements to determine their size in each store.
Size 5T at Different Brands
|Brand||Height (inches)||Weight (pounds)|
|Cat & Jack (Target)||43.5-44.5||37.5-42|
|Little Co. (Kohl’s)||41-42.5||N/A|
What Size Comes After 5T?
For a majority of brands, size 6 comes after 5T. However, since each brand uses different measurements for their sizes, you might find that another size is better suited for your child’s body. Some parents also choose to transition their children to kids sizes before they outgrow toddler sizes.
When transitioning your child from toddler sizes to kids sizes, it is helpful to know your child’s measurements to determine the correct size for each brand. Additionally, once your child outgrows size 6, the sizes will start to differ between girls and boys. Around this age, girls and boys begin to grow at different rates, and their body structure becomes more differentiated.
Differences Between Size 5T and 4
Size 4 is actually smaller than size 5T, even though it is a kids size and not a toddler size. It is the size for an average 4-year-old. Size 4 usually fits between 4T and 5T.
There is no reason your child needs to remain in toddler sizes once they begin to fit in kids sizes. Many parents start using kids sizes when their child reaches size 4.
Differences Between Size 5T and 5
Just like with size 4, size 5 is a kids size, and size 5T is a toddler size. The measurements are usually nearly identical. Size 5 will be slightly longer and slimmer to fit an older child’s body. Size 5T will be more square, as toddler clothing tends to be.
Some brands have a size 4/5, which also fits similarly to a size 5T. Usually, the tops will fit a little slimmer than size 5T, and the bottoms are slightly shorter.
Differences Between Size 5T and 6
Since 5T is the largest toddler size for most brands, it is the largest size available that has room for a diaper or pull-ups in the bottoms. Once a child moves up to a size 6, parents may find that the hips are slimmer and the bottoms no longer taper off. Children also tend to grow taller as opposed to wider at this age, so tops are longer in length.
Size 6 is the next size up from 5T for most brands. This is the most common size that children will transition into when making the switch to kids sizes. A few clothing brands do offer size 6T, which fits between size 5 and size 6.
How to Measure Your Child for Clothing
While children at this age seem to be extra squirmy, getting accurate measurements of your child’s body can assure that you find the right size the first time. As much as they hate standing still for measurements, they will probably hate having to try on multiple sizes more.
Sizing guides for many popular brands are included later in this post, so have these numbers handy to see which size(s) your child fits in.
To measure your child’s chest, have them stand up straight and relax. They should not breathe in or out excessively; have them continue breathing normally. With a tape measure, measure around their chest at the fullest part, which is located under the armpit.
To measure your child’s waist, once again have them stand up straight, relax, and breathe normally. Measure around their abdomen at the natural waist (thinnest section), located near the belly button.
While standing, have your child relax their arms down by their size to measure arm length. Measure from the shoulder to just below the wrist bone.
To find your child’s hip measurement, have them stand up straight and relaxed. Measure around the widest part of their hips and bottom.
To measure your child’s inseam, have them stand barefoot with their feet slightly apart. Measure from the top of the inner thigh to the floor with a tape measure.
Most children’s clothing brands do not include an inseam in their sizing guide. However, parents with especially short or tall children can find this helpful when shopping for pants.
Height is a common measurement found in a company’s sizing chart. It is important to be aware of your child’s height when shopping for clothes. You will want to keep in mind length of pants and shirts to ensure they fit properly.
The Difference Between Toddler Clothing and Kids Clothing
You might assume that there is no difference between toddler clothing and kid’s clothing, that the sizes just keep going up. Most brands cut their clothing differently for toddlers and kids because their body shapes tend to be different. Toddlers are usually boxy and plumper. Around age 5, children tend to become taller and “grow into their bodies.”
Toddler clothing reflects the usual toddler shape. The shirts are typically wider and shorter than kid’s sizes. Pants will usually taper in at the ankles.
Additionally, toddler sizes reflect the average age of the child in that size. Kid’s numerical sizes work the same way, but many parents find their child is rarely at the same age and size.
The Difference Between Number Sizes and Letter Sizes in Kid’s Clothing
Every brand will have different sizing. Typically a letter size (XS, S, M, etc.) will encompass multiple number sizes. Due to this, letter sizes can have wider ranges between brands.
Frequently Asked Questions
Final Thoughts on What Size Comes After 5T
While children’s clothing sizes can be confusing, a little research into size guides and measurements can make shopping easier. When most children outgrow their size 5T clothing, they will transition into size 6. Or they may even need a larger size because children never stop growing.
We hope this guide helps you to navigate the transition from baby clothes to children’s clothes as you shop for your little one.
Looking for more tips for your little one? Head over to our Ages and Phases Section to see more topics.
Krissy lives in California with her family of three that make up “The Hadicks.” With a passion for research and helping others, The Hadicks was developed as a resource for other parents and parents-to-be!