Pants Size Tips

Pants come in all different styles, finding the right size for a particular style can be difficult. From high-rise jeans to low-rise jeans, tips and advice on finding the perfect size for you. Browse through our tips to measure the waist, the outseam, the break, etc. Our tip center is here to help you find the best fitting pants for you.

Buying Based on What you Already Have in your Closet

Buying Based on What you Already Have in your Closet

If you are planning to buy a pair of pants online, keep your measurements in handy. Having accurate measurements will not only make your task of buying the pants easier, it will also ensure that the trousers that you buy fit you well. Thus you reduce the chances of having to feel upset when the low rise jeans or the Izod pants that you fancied so much, does not fit you properly.

So how do you know your measurements? The best way is to take a pair of pants that fit you well and measure the following (in inches):

  • Pant size: If you were buying from the same brand or manufacturer, it would help if you know your pant size. Check the tag to know your pant size. However, US sizes differ from the UK and Asian sizes. Even different manufacturers in the US have different sizing norms.
  • Inseam: This is the length between the crotch or the split of the pants and the hem.
  • Outseam: This is the distance between the waistband and the hem.
  • Waist size: Take this measurement from the inside of the pants, as the measurement taken from the outside would include the thickness of the waistband.
  • Rise: The rise is the distance between the waistband and the crotch. In women’s high-rise jeans, this would generally be about 12 inches. The rise of a natural waist would be around the navel, approximately around 11 inches from the split of the crotch. In a “just below waist” rise the waistband will rest just below the navel at a distance of about 10 inches from the crotch. A low-rise pant would have approximately 8 to 10 inches from the split of the pants. For men’s low rise pants, the waistband would be approximately 9 to 11 inches from the crotch. Once you measure the rise of your favorite pants, you will get an idea of how much rise you would prefer in the pants that you would like to purchase.

Once you have your measurements in hand, you are set to explore the world of pants online!

Measuring the Break

Measuring the Break

An important factor to consider when you get your new pair of pants is its break. The break refers to how the pant falls on your shoes, thus creating a crease at the front of your shoe. The break is a result of the length of the pant. If your pant is too short, it will not have a distinct break. When you are getting the hem of your pants tailored, you should take into consideration the type of break you want to incorporate in your trousers.

A pant with a short break has little or no crease in the pant leg. For a short break look, you should hem the pant at a length where your pants are just below the top of your shoe. This gives your pant a clean and tailored look.

The medium break is the classic look adopted by most people. For your pants to have a medium break, ensure that the hem of the pant falls halfway between the top of your shoes and the top of your shoe sole. This look is suited for men of average height. It gives a very professional look.

The full break is a more modern look. For a full break, your pant should fall till the top of your shoe sole. Tall men look good in pants with a full break.

Thus when you get your pant tailored, along with your fitting at the waist, you should also consider the length of the pant and incorporate the style of break that you prefer.

Measuring the Hem

Measuring the Hem

Whenever you buy a pair of pants, chances are that they will not be hemmed. If you make the purchase from a clothing store that has an in house tailor, they will take your measurements and get the pants hemmed to fit you. However if you buy the pants online, like a pair of gaucho capri pants or Theory pants, you would need to get the hem done by a tailor or do it yourself.

It is quite simple to hem pants. For this you would first need to measure the hem. Take a pair of perfectly fitting pants, turn it inside out and lay it flat on the bed or table. Measure the inseam of the right leg, that is the distance from the crotch to the hem, and record it. Next measure the outseam, that is the distance from the waistband to the hem and record it. Repeat the process for the left leg. Now lay the unhemmed pant, inside out on a flat surface. Measure and mark the inseam and outseam measurements on both legs. Fold the rest of the hem at the marked place and iron it. Leave enough material for hemming inside the pants or for creating a cuff and cut the extra material. Thereafter hem the pants by hand using hemstitch. You could also hem it with the help of a sewing machine.

Alternatively, you could wear the pants you want hemmed. Wear shoes with the heel size that you normally wear and stand up straight. Ask a friend to mark the place you want the hem to fall, at least at four places, with the help of pins or chalk. Take the trousers off. Fold in at the marked places and iron. Now place the pins to secure the hem and carefully wear the pants. Check if the hem is falling properly. If not make the necessary alterations. Once you have got the hem pinned correctly, hem the pants by hand or by using the sewing machine.

Measuring your Waist

Measuring your Waist

When you buy pants online or from a store, you will be asked for your inseam and waist measurement. These two parameters will determine which pant will be of a good fit for you. The waist size also determines the pants size.

You could know your waist measurement with the help of one of your pants that fits you perfectly. Ensure that the pant is zipped or buttoned. Then lay it flat on a table. Measure the waistband from inside to get an accurate measurement

You could also know your waist size by using a cloth tape measure to measure yourself. When you do so, preferably wear just your inners or light clothing. This will ensure that the measurement is correct. Now stand up straight and measure yourself around that part of your waist, where you usually wear your pants. Make sure that the measuring tape is not held too tight. Preferably keep it slightly loose with about a finger’s breadth between the tape and your body.

Your waist size determines your pants size. For example, women with a waist measurement of 24 inches would be of size 0; 25 inches of size 2, 26 inches of size 4, 27 inches of size 6, and so on. For men the pant size is usually mentioned in inches with the waist and inseam measurement as the parameters. For example, if a man has a waist size of 34” and an inseam of 36”, his pants size will be mentioned as 34 x 36”. His pant size could also be mentioned in sizes such as XS, S, M, L, XL and so on. Here 28-30 inches would be XS size, 30-32 would be S size, 32-34 would be M, 34-36 would be L and 36-38 would be XL size.

Whenever you are buying pants and you know that you cannot try the pant on, be ready with your measurements. Many popular pants such as Levi’s 510 jeans will offer their size chart online. This would enhance your chances of getting a pair of pants that fits well even though you haven’t tried it on.

Measuring Outseam

Measuring Outseam

The Outseam refers to the length between the waistline and the bottom of the ankle. In other words, it is the pant length. Outseam measurements are usually made in inches. Most stores require the inseam measurement along with the pant size to determine the correct fit for your pant. However, the outseam measurement is actually a better parameter. The reason for this is that the inseam measures the distance between the split of the crotch of the pant and the hem of the pant. This measurement varies on different styles of pants. For example, in your loose fitting Theory pants the split of the crotch is lower than in your tight fitting high rise jeans. The outseam measurement in both remains more or less constant for all pants where the hem falls at the same place.

It is quite simple to measure your outseam. Wear a pant such that it is placed comfortably on your waist. Also wear shoes with heels of the size that you normally wear or plan to wear with the pants. Stand straight looking forward. Ask your friend to measure on your right side, from that part of your waistline where you normally wear your pant, to the point where you would like the hem of your pants to fall. Usually the hem would be approximately half an inch above the floor. Thereafter ask your friend to take a similar measurement on the left side. Many times the measurements on the two sides would differ, sometimes by half an inch or more!

If you do not have a person to assist you, take a pant that is of a perfect fit and place it flat on a table. Then measure from the top of the pant line to the hem. This will give you the outseam measurement.

Measuring Inseam

Measuring Inseam

When you are buying a pair of pants or altering its length, it is essential to know your inseam measurement. The inseam comprises of the inner seam of the pants that extends from the crotch to the ankles. The inner seam of the right and left legs of the pant join to form the seat of the pant. This part usually has two rows of stitching to make it more durable.

It is necessary to know your inseam measurement, as two people buying the same pant size may have legs of differing lengths. Thus their inseam measurement would vary. For example, if there are two women, one is 5’ and the other is 5’5” tall, both wear pants of size 10. However it is quite obvious that their inseam measurement will vary. Similarly the inseam of a pant would vary depending on the style of the pant. For example, the inseam for a tight fitting high-rise jeans for a lady would be more than the inseam measurement of her loose ladie’s cargo pants.

There are two ways of measuring the inseam- with the help of another person or by using a pair of comfortable pants. You could measure the inseam of a pant that fits you perfectly and is of the same style as the pants you are planning to buy. Just lay your pant flat and measure from the crotch of the pant to the hem.

To measure your inseam with the help of another person, firstly wear a comfortable pant. Ensure that the footwear you are wearing has heels of the size that you normally will wear. Now ask your helper to measure your right leg from the crotch of the pants to the point where you would like the hem of the pant to fall. Usually most people prefer the hem to fall till the ankle. Then ask your helper to take the same measurement for the left leg. At times the inseam measurement for the two legs may not be the same. So you could use the separate measurements to ensure that the hem of your pants fall at the same place on both your legs.

With the inseam measurement in hand, you can now buy a pant that is of perfect fit for you. If you are planning to buy a pant of a material that could shrink, add about half an inch to your inseam measurement.

How to Choose Petite Jeans

How to Choose Petite Jeans

Women’s jeans come in a wide variety of styles. There are dark or light washes, short or long hemlines and trendy or casual styles. Different jean styles can create different looks. No matter what style you favor, it is very important to have a pair of jeans that fits your body type well because well-fitting jeans create a proportional look. Your body type plays a very important role in ultimately deciding the jean style for you. Each jean style, such as boot cut, low rise, straight cut and slim fit is designed to suit specific body types.

The average American woman is 5 feet 4 inches. A woman that is 5 feet 3 inches or shorter is generally considered petite in the United States. If you are petite, it may be a bit challenging to find jeans that fit you properly. Petite women may find that many jean cuts are simply too long for them.

It is a bit easier to find jeans for tall women. Petite women may have to have these longer jeans hemmed to fit them properly. Here are some tips that may help the petite woman select the right petite jeans:

  • Try not to focus on finding jeans that are the perfect length. Try to focus instead on finding jeans that fit your hips and waist. If the jeans are a bit long, they can fairly easily be hemmed by a seamstress.
  • Low rise jeans are very fashionable. However, petite women may look best wearing mid-rise waists. They will make your legs look longer and more proportional with the rest of your body.
  • Skinny jeans, tapered cuts and boot cut jeans are optimal cuts for the petite women. Also avoid rolling up your jeans at the hem because a rolled up hem may make your legs look shorter.
  • Wearing dark blue or black denim will make you look taller and slimmer.

Whatever your size, there is a perfect jean for you out there. Check it out at www.become.com.