2T vs 3T Clothing Sizes

mother folding 3T clothing

It’s time to buy some new clothes for your toddler but what does the sizing on the label actually mean? Let’s have a look at what sizes toddler clothing comes in, to help you figure out which one you need. This article focuses on 2T versus 3T clothing sizes and will explain what they represent and what you might need for your child. 

What is 2T?

2T is for children aged between 2 and 3 years old. It stands for 2 Toddler and this size is where baby clothes transition into more child-like clothing. This size is when kids clothes change a bit in style and you’ll see the poppers in pants disappear (as these help to change diapers). It’s also when you will stop shopping in the baby section of the store because sizes 2T and beyond are usually found in the children’s section instead. 

Is size 2 the same as 2T?

For all intents and purposes size 2 is the same as 2T. Sometimes you will find that a 2T pant may be roomier to better fit around a diaper. The only real way to tell is to look and try them on your child. If you buy clothing from outside of the US it is likely that you will only see a size 2 or 2-3 on the label. The 2T sizing is common in the USA but not so much elsewhere in the world. They toddler sizes come in 2T, 3T, 4T and 5T before the ‘T’ label is dropped altogether.

Is size 3 bigger than 2T?

Yes, a size 3 is the next size up from a 2T. Size 3 is designed for children aged over 3 years old. Of course, each brand is different, as is each child and so your 3 year old may not fit into size 3 clothing. It doesn’t hurt to try size 3 or 3T clothing on your 2 year old, especially when you need a coat or other expensive item. Sometimes there is not a huge difference in size and your child will get more wear out if it.  

What is the difference between 24 months and 2T sizes?

Clothing labelled 24 months is designed to fit children aged up to 24 months old. Whereas clothing labelled 2T is designed to fit children aged over 2 years old up to 3 years old. 

Usually 24 months sized clothes are found in the baby section of the store and you’ll find onesies and pants with poppers to easily change diapers. 2T size clothes are likely to be found in the kids section and pants won’t have poppers for easy diaper changes. You will also see the styles start to change from baby focused designs to designs suited to young children.  

What is 3T?

3T clothing size is designed to fit children aged 3 up until around age 4. It stands for 3 Toddler and it is usually the next size your child will need once they grow out of 2T clothing. You will find 3T clothes in the children’s section of the store and they have designs for children rather than babies. 

Is size 3 the same as 3T?

Yes, generally speaking clothing labelled as a size 3 is the same as clothing labelled as 3T. There are differences from brand to brand and of course not every child aged 3 will fit into all age 3 sized clothing. When you buy clothes from another country look for age 3 or 3-4 sized clothing since the 3T label is only used in the US. This way you are more likely to get the size that you want. 

Is size 4 bigger than 3T?

A size 4 is bigger than 3T because they are designed for children aged over 4 years old up until they are 5 years old. This is the age when the “T” is often dropped from the sizing on the label (although you can find 5T on some labels). Since your 4 year old is no longer a toddler you may see it less often, although it does depend on the brand. You will still find size 4 in the children’s section of the store and the designs are similar or the same as 2T and 3T. 

What is the size difference between 2t and 3t?

We know that a 2T will generally fit a 2 year old and a 3T will generally fit a 3 year old. However, it is useful to know what that actually means in terms of weight and height. 

According to this size chart, here’s how toddler clothing sizes generally break down according to a child’s height and weight:

  • 2T is for toddlers 24-28 lbs in weight and 33–35” in height.
  • 3T is for toddlers who weigh between 28.5–32 lbs and 36–38.5” in height.

This is helpful to know when you buy clothes for your child because each brand is different just like each child. The number on the label does not translate into reality every time. You’ll see below that various retailers don’t stick to these guidelines at all.

What size should a 2 year old wear?

A 2 year old is likely to transition into 2T clothes around their 2nd birthday. That being said some children will still wear their 18-24 month or 24 month clothes for a while after they turn 2. Other children will jump straight into 3T clothing. Most children will have a mix of sizes in their closets, simply because each brand’s designs come up different and therefore will fit each child differently. There is not one answer to this question, it comes down to trial and error at the end of the day. However, the sizes on the label are a good guide for you to use. 

What size should a 3 year old wear?

A 3 year old will often transition into 3T clothes around or after their 3rd birthday. However it is normal for your 3 year old to still wear their 2T clothing beyond this milestone or even to jump into age 4 sized clothing before their 4th birthday. Remember every brand fits differently and the size on the label is a guide but not the rule. 

How does 2T and 3T compare to sizes in other countries?

2T and 3T compare generally to age 2 and 3 in other countries. You may find that a 2T in the US comes up smaller than an age 2 or 2-3 labelled item from another country. The same goes for 3T versus age 3 or 3-4. Be prepared to try different sizes than you may buy in the US when you purchase clothes from other countries.

Furthermore, you typically find that other countries and regions only have one size for the equivalent for 2T and 3T. For example, in the UK, 2T and 3T is the same as size 2-3, 92-98cm for Europe and size 3 for Australia.

What is size 2T in different retailers?

Let’s look at 4 popular retailers and their sizing for 2T clothes. There a few little differences here and there. You see why you have to really try clothes on before you buy them for your toddler!


2T in Walmart is for 26.5–30 lbs and 32–33.5”. While the height is slightly shorter, the weight is slightly above the standard size.


2T in Carters is for a weight of 29-31 lbs (bigger than the standard size) and 34.5–36.5” in height (which is a bit longer)


At Nordstrom, 2T is for 28-30 lbs and 33.5–35.5”. Like Walmart, it’s slightly above the standard weight for 2T, but the height is longer.


Finally a quick look at Target reveals that 2T is for 25-27 lbs and 33–35.5”. This is the closest to the standard recommendation for height and weight.

What is 3T in different retailers?

Let’s look at 4 popular retailers and their measurements for 3T clothes. 


3T in Walmart is 30.5–34 lbs and 34–37.5”, which is slightly above the standard size for weight, but below the height.


At Carters, 3T is for 31-34 lbs and 36.5–38.5”, which is bang on for height but slightly above the average weight.


3T is for 30-33 lbs and 36–38” at Nordstrom.


Target have 28-32 lbs and 36-38.5” for their 3T sizes, which are very close to the standard size.

2t vs 3t clothing size


You’ve probably noticed that each size range is broad and what fits one 2 or 3 year old will not fit another. It’s just like when you buy clothes for yourself and a medium size is different in every store! There is no one-fits-all size at any age. 

As you can see from the sizes above, every brand is very different. Most people find a brand or two they like best for each age range. It is nice to know what to expect and have a good idea of what will fit your child. Shop around, try things on your child and use the labels as a guide but not a rule. Choose comfort, practicality and fit, over the number on the label. Now it’s time to go shopping!