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Tips for Choosing a Leotard

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If you are shopping for a leotard, you may be surprised by the variety of styles available today. Be prepared to spend some time looking, as a leotard is meant to fit the body like a glove and may involve some trial and error. The following tips will help you find the perfect leotard.
  • Check with the teacher.
    Many ballet teachers enforce strict dress codes, even for their youngest dancers. Some teachers assign particular colors for leotards, others prefer a certain style. Ask before you start shopping.

  • Choose a style.
    Leotards are available in a variety of styles, including long-sleeved, short-sleeved, sleeveless tanks, halters and camisoles. Popular brands include Capezio, Bloch, M. Stevens and Natalie.

  • Choose the right material.
    Many materials are used in making leotards, some having advantages over others. For instance, a blend of washable cotton and lycra offers support with stretchability. However, certain blends, including the new microfibers, are soft and light but require hand-washing.

  • Try it on.
    Be aware that your regular clothes size will differ from her dancewear size. Many of the major dancewear companies have their own sizing charts, so check to be sure. But the best way to get the right fit is to try the leotard on. Do a few stretches with your arms raised, noting any gaps in material or slipping of shoulder straps. Squat down, as in a plie', and check for pinching or gaping around the legs. Try several styles to find the style that best fits your body.
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