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What Clothing Size Comes After 4T – Differences Explained!

When buying clothes for your four or five-year-old, you’ll notice sizing such as 4T, 4, 5T, and 5. Does 4T and 5T mean you’re shopping in the toddler’s section? And, what size comes after 4T if these measurements don’t fit your kid nearing five-year-olds and definitely no longer a toddler? Here’s everything you need to know.

Meaning of 4T Size

Children’s clothing sizing can start to get confusing when you look at different retail stores especially if you’re shopping online. If you’re still checking out the toddler range of clothes, you’ll notice some clothing stores are including the size 4T. This means the item fits the average-sized four-year-old toddler. 

Size 4T: Average Measurements

The size 4T varies depending on the clothing store and the brand. But, on average, the measurement of 4T fits a four-year-old who weighs between 33 and 37.5 lbs. This size also refers to the average height of between 39 and 41 inches. 

What Size Comes After 4T? 

After size 4T comes 5T, 4 or 5 and higher. Size 5T is the last sizing available in the toddler’s section. It fits most five-year-old toddlers. Size 4 is found in the boys’ and girls’ sections. This may also be referred to as the youth or kids’ section. Size 5 is for five-year-olds and can also be an S or M

Size 4 generally fits children between three and four years old. Size 4 falls between 4T and 5T. When looking at 4 vs. 4T sizes note that the difference in clothing measurements do matter even if they’re very slight!

Size 5T fits kids between four and five years old. However, Size 5 is more suitable for five-year-olds with clothing being longer and bigger than 5T. However, you may need to go up or down a size depending on your child’s height and weight as well as their build.

In Underwear

When buying underwear beyond 4T, you need to take a few factors into consideration for ultimate comfort. This includes the weight of your child as well as the measurement of their waist, low-rise, and thighs

Some brands also use different measurements for boys and girls in size 4 or 5 so always check out the brand’s size chart before settling on underwear for your kid. 

Most underwear for toddlers is labeled 2T/3T and 4T/5T, giving you the flexibility to go slightly smaller or larger depending on your child’s own measurements. This table gives average measurements of undies from size 4T to 5. 

Size4T5T
Weight31-37lb34-40lb34-43lb44-68lb
Waist19-26in20-28in22in23-24in
Low Rise13.5in14inN/AN/A
Thigh10-16in11-17inN/AN/A

Fruit of the Loom Toddler Girls Underwear size 4T/5T are designed to fit four to five-year-old toddlers with a weight of between 33 to 40lb and a waist measuring 21 to 21.5in. Note the slight difference in measurements for the Fruit of the Loom Boys Cotton Briefs for 4T/5T size meant for the weight of 34 to 38lb and waist of 22in. 

In Pajamas

When buying pajamas for your child older than four years old, it’s recommended to go up one size for optimal comfort. 

Size 4T pajamas are suitable for children weighing between 33 and 36 pounds with a height of 38 to 40 inches. Size 5T pajamas are for toddlers who are 40 to 42 inches tall and weigh 36 to 40 pounds. Consider the average measurements for size 5 pajamas in the table below.

Size Height ChestWaistHip 
5/6< 46.25in24in22in25in

Simple Joys by Carter’s Girls Pajamas size 5T have the following measurements:

  • Height: 41.5 – 44in
  • Weight: 37.5 – 42lb

The same measurements apply for boys’ pajamas such as the  Simple Joys for Carter’s Boys Pajamas

In Pants 

When buying pants for both boys and girls beyond size 4T, the measurements are going to change. Size 5T resembles very similar measurements to size 5 to 6 pants. However, size 5T is often roomier to compensate for toddlers still wearing diapers. 

The rule of thumb here is toddler pants are smaller and with less length compared to size 5 or 6 which are longer. When going beyond 4T, pick pants size 5/6 for a better fit. The typical measurements of these pants are:

  • Height: 47 – 51in
  • Weight: 42 – 50lb
  • Waist: 22 – 23in

 If you want to dress your child in jeans, consider getting 5T if they’re still wearing diapers for more comfortable wear. However, switch over to size 5 or 6 when you want a proper fit in jeans. 

The Children’s Place Boy’s Basic Bootcut Jeans size 5 Slim have the following measurements:

  • Height: 41 – 44in
  • Waist: 20 – 21.5in
  • Hip: 21-22in
  • Inseam: 17.5 – 18.5in

In Shirts 

When comparing shirt sizes from 4T to 4 and then 5T and 5, you need to take into consideration the height and weight as well as chest and waist measurements. Use this table to help you compare the sizes. 

Size4T45T5
Height38 – 41in39 – 41in42 -43in42 – 44in
Weight34 – 38lb32 – 37lb38 – 42lb37 – 42lb
Chest23 – 24in22 – 23in24 – 25in23 – 24in
Waist24 – 25in21 – 21.5in25 – 26in21.5 – 22in

Watch this video which shows how to take measurements for your child’s clothing.

4T and Beyond in Toddler vs. Kids (Youth) Section When Shopping

Let’s look at the pros and cons of opting for 5T and staying in the toddler section for a while longer.

Pros of Toddler Section

  • Convenience: If your child is still in diapers then buying toddler clothing is better for convenience. They come with snaps or poppers making it easier to undress your toddler.
  • Cost: Toddler clothing is often cheaper than kids’ clothing which is a big plus when your child is growing all the time.
  • Smaller sizes: If your child has a petite frame then staying in the toddler section for a while longer makes sense.
  • Comfort: Toddler pants often come with an elastic or stretchy waist which is more comfortable for smaller bodies. 

Cons of Toddler Section

  • Less variety: Toddler clothing comes in fewer styles and designs compared to what you would find in the youth’s section.
  • Less durability: Materials used to construct toddler clothing are often not as durable as those clothes made for older children. 
  • Not suitable for taller children: If your toddler is a tall infant, they’re going to outgrow the shorter styles found in this department far quicker. 

Consider these advantages when shopping in the kids’ section::

  • “Big Kid” styles: Transitioning to the “big kid” stage is a little easier for your child when they get to wear clothes designed for their age group. It helps them to fit in better too when they start going to preschool.
  • Adjustable pants: Pants for older children are designed to have zippers and buttons with elastic waistbands. This means you can adjust the pants to fit your child’s bigger or smaller waist while not going up another size. 
  • More options: While your child may be a fan of wearing Marvel characters on their clothing, others may prefer to have solid colors. A boys and girls section gives you more options when looking for maturer styles.  

How to Know When Your Child Needs to Wear Size 4T and Larger

Look out for the following signs to know when your child needs to wear size 4T or move onto the next size:

  • Diaper stage: Once your toddler stops wearing diapers you can move onto size 4 or 5. You can move to a 5T if your infant is still using diapers but has outgrown size 4T clothing. 
  • Change in body measurements: Moving from 3T to 4T is necessary when your child has grown bigger. The same applies when transitioning from 4T to a bigger size because of growth spurts. 
  • Age group: A five-year old is going to feel more comfortable wearing size 5 clothing compared to toddler styles when they become more self-conscious. 
  • Fit: When clothing becomes too tight, it’s time to move to a larger size. 

What Comes After 4T in Retail Stores

Carter’s

Carter’s size 4 is slightly bigger than their 4T. The size is meant to fit a toddler with a height of 39 to 41.5 inches tall and weighing between 34 and 37.5 pounds. The size 4 fits a kid measuring a height of 40 to 42.5 inches and weighing between 34 to 38.5 pounds. 

Carter’s 5T is sized for toddlers’ height of between 41.5 to 43.5 inches and weighing between 38 and 42 pounds. Their size 5 clothing is designed for kids 42.5 to 45 inches tall and weighing between 39 to 44 pounds. They have simple sizing charts for different groups and clothing such as gowns and shoes. 

Walmart

Walmart separates toddler and kids’ clothing according to the following size groups:

  • Toddler: 12M to 5T
  • Little girls: 4 – 6X
  • Little boys: 4 – 7
  • Big girls: 7 – 18
  • Big boys: 8 – 20

Walmart’s size 5T measures 42 to 44.5 inches in height and 38.5 to 42 pounds. From size 4 Walmart has different clothing sizes for girls and boys based on height, chest, waist, and hip measurements. 

Target

Target put size 5T and 4 together using a height measurement of 43.5 to 44.5 inches and weight of 37.5 to 42 pounds. 

Target size 5 uses the height measurement of 43 to 45 inches while the weight is between 39 and 43 pounds. They also include chest, waist, and hip measurements on their size charts

Old Navy

Old Navy’s toddler range includes 5T and 6T on their size charts. Check out the differences in height and weight for these two sizes:

  • 5T: Height of 42 to 45 inches and weight of 40 to 46 pounds.
  • 6T: Height of 45 to 49 inches and weight of 46 to 53 pounds

When you hit the kids’ section, the sizes go from 5 to 18. The regular size 5 height measurement is 42 to 45 inches with a waist of 22.5 inches. Slim and husky sizes are also available. 

Wrap Up

Whether you’re still in the toddler stage and comparing 2T vs 3T or heading off to the kids’ section for your older child, differences in clothing sizes do matter. Being aware that size charts differ between retail outlets and brands will also give you the heads up to buying the right clothes for your kids. And, how often you change your baby’s clothes depends not only on age but the height and weight of your child.

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