A 32-inch waist equates to a size 32 in women's jean sizes. In regular women's US dress sizes, however, a 32-inch waist is usually somewhere around a size 14 or XL, depending on the manufacturer and cut of the clothing.
It is important to consider more than just waist size when determining clothes size. The inseam length, hip and thigh measurements are important considerations for jeans and pants, due to a person's height. Someone with a 32-inch waist may have to size up or down for dresses, depending on a woman's cup size. Size charts are just guidelines; nothing compares to actually trying on an item to see if it fits.