As a model, your statistics (aka "stats") will be asked for and referred to often, so it's essential for you to understand what they are and be able to provide them at a moment's notice.
So, what are your model stats, and why are they so important?
Your model stats are your body measurements that you provide to agents and clients, and they are also displayed on your comp cards, modeling resume, and agency profile. The most common measurements requested are of your bust/chest, waist, and hips (in inches if in the US and centimeters if outside US). Usually, they are listed as a series of numbers like this: 34-26-36, and will always be interpreted in the bust-waist-hip order. Sometimes your height, dress size (for women), jacket size (for men), and shoe size are also included in your stats, so that information is also important for you to know.
Knowing your stats and keeping them up to date is crucial for models because your career revolves around clothing. When a designer or client needs a model, they must know their stats to select the right model to fit the clothing they intend to use.
Since you will be asked to check your measurements fairly often, you must know how to do them correctly. Using a soft measuring tape is the best way to get accurate measurements.
When taking your bust/chest measurements, it's important that you keep the measuring tape level around your back and go across the fullest part of your chest. Don't pull the tape tight, but make sure it sits snugly against your body and that there aren't any gaps.
You want to do your waist measurement at your natural waistline, which is usually the spot just below your last rib bone. Again, you want to ensure the measuring tape is level around your back and that you pull it snugly to your body but not too tight! Also, when doing your waist measurement, don't suck in! This will give an inaccurate measurement.
When measuring your hips, just like when measuring your bust/chest, you want to make sure you go around the fullest part of your bum. Put your feet together, and keep the measuring tape level as you go around your hips. Again, take care not to pull too tight but make sure there are no gaps between your body and the tape.
Do not lie about the measurement when taking your measurements or providing them to your agent or a client! Not even ½ an inch. This could result in you being booked for a job and not having any of the wardrobe fit correctly, which will irritate the client and your agent and give you the reputation of being dishonest.
Due to life and normal fluctuations of the human body, it's a good idea to check your measurements at least every three months to ensure your stats are accurate. Sometimes, agencies will require you to stay within a specific size range, which can cause some stress when it's time to update your stats. There is often a lot of pressure in the industry to adhere to measurements that may not be a healthy fit for your body type, so you mustn't let that pressure you into pushing your body past its limits and taking on unhealthy habits to stay within a particular size window. The industry needs many diverse body types to appeal to different audiences, so there is no need to stay in a certain size category for your entire modeling career. Making sure you're healthy and happy is what matters, not the numbers on the measuring tape!