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How Your Jeans Should Fit. The Ultimate Guide for Short Men
This is an in-depth tutorial about wearing jeans for short men. It’s packed with useful images and examples, and it’s divided into parts for your convenience.
Jeans are one of the most vital wardrobe staples a man will ever wear, regardless of his height (5’2″ or 6’4″). Every man’s wardrobe should have at least one (or three) pairs of high-quality, go-to jeans.
They’re ideal for casual and smart casual clothes, as well as business casual settings.
Jeans can also make a man appear to be an unruly adolescent or a father who has completely given up on his appearance! We’re joking, but there’s some truth to this, especially for short men.
Of course, this does not imply that your jeans should be painted on your body. Jeans should be close to the body but not too tight. Comfort comes first, and believe it or not, thinner cut jeans might be more comfortable.
For example, if your waist is too large, you must tighten your belt, causing thick folds of fabric to form around your stomach. It’s not a good look, and it’s really uncomfortable, especially when sitting.
Teeanime’s guide to wearing jeans covers all you need to know, with an emphasis on comfort and style.
How Jeans Should Fit
We believe that most men look terrific in slim straight or slim tapered (often known as “skinny”) jeans.
This is determined by personal preferences and body type. Choose narrow stretch jeans if you’re a thinner guy or prefer a closer fit.
Victor, our model, prefers a slimmer, more tapered pant. Choose slim straight if you’re a larger man or prefer a more classic silhouette.
Stay away from baggy jeans at all costs. They don’t suit any body type, especially smaller or shorter men.
Let’s start at the top and work our way down to how your jeans should fit.
Your jeans should be tight enough around the waist that you don’t need a belt to keep them in place. Of course, if you need a belt to obtain that extra 14 to 12 inch snug, go ahead, but don’t tighten it so tightly that it forms folds of cloth around the waistband.
However, the waist should not be so tight that the top of the waistband digs into your stomach when you sit. You shouldn’t have to unbutton your jeans after dinner (but we won’t criticize you if you do).
Your jeans should fit snugly around your hips, which are the broadest area of your lower body (where your butt and hips protrude the most).
They should not be sloppy. If you have a lot of extra material around your hips, it might make your hips look wider and your butt look saggier, for lack of a better phrase.
Erick demonstrates how our Travel Jeans should fit around the waist.
They should be fitted instead. If you prefer slimmer fit jeans, you may notice some constriction around your hips and buttocks.
Walking or sitting should not be difficult if the hips are too tight. In other words, you shouldn’t feel any uncomfortable pulling when you take a step, climb a flight of stairs, or squat down. You should be able to bend over, squat, or perform your favorite dance move without causing tears or blowouts.
The rise is commonly separated into two measurements: front and back. The front rise measures the distance between the top of the waistband and the crotch seam. The back rise is the same, however it begins at the back waistline.
Low rise trousers have a shorter rise (about 8 inches) than high rise pants (about 10-12 inches).
The rise of a pair of pants determines where they sit on your body (i.e., where the waistband ends). Low rise jeans are designed to sit lower on your hip bones. Higher rise pants are intended to be worn above the natural waist, closer to the navel.
Pants rise, like many other aspects of fashion, is susceptible to change. Men wore high-waisted, loose-fitting Zoot suits in the 1940s. Low-riding “hip huggers” were all the rage by the 1960s. Pants were on the rise again in the 1980s. Then, in the late 1990s, an unparalleled age of very low rise jeans began.
Higher waisted jeans have clearly made a resurgence in recent years, but fashions move faster now than ever before.
The point is, regardless of what’s popular, a “regular” rise always looks good. While an extremely low or high rise flatters specific body shapes, a typical (or medium) rise flatters everyone. It evens out your build, which is especially crucial for shorter men.
How your jeans fit through the leg, like the hips and rise, is subject to fashion and personal preference. We believe that most men look terrific in jeans with minimal additional fabric through the leg. To put it another way, narrow straight or “skinny” fit jeans.
This isn’t to say your jeans should look like they’ve been painted on, and we’re certainly not in favor of so-called jeggings. We’re only stating that the curve of your jeans’ legs should be similar to the shape of your own legs.
This indicates that there should be a delicate, progressive taper from the top of the thigh to the ankle and leg opening.
It makes sense: your thighs are larger than your calves, which are larger than your ankles. If your jeans follow this shape, it provides a natural, eye-catching silhouette.
Fitted jeans, as opposed to loose fit jeans, which are baggy through the leg and have no taper, make men appear taller and thinner.
The Leg Opening
The leg opening of a pair of jeans is the size (diameter or circumference) of the pant leg’s bottom (i.e., the ankle).
This is sometimes measured as circumference, but it is more commonly calculated as the distance across the bottom of the trouser leg when laid flat.
A smaller leg opening indicates a greater taper from the knee down. Straight fit jeans, for example, may have the same width at the knee and ankle.
Tapered jeans have a narrower ankle than a wide knee.
We believe that all jeans should have a slight taper through the leg. Small, skinny men look particularly good in jeans with narrower leg openings.
Unless you’re a cowboy, avoid big leg openings (e.g., bootcut jeans).
Pants “break” refers to what occurs to excess fabric around your ankle and shin when your pants are worn over your shoe.
Longer pants will have more break, or folding and stacking beneath the knee and above the foot. Shorter pants will have less break, if any at all.
Let’s have a look at the various degrees of break:
Cropped > Stacking > Full Break > Half/Partial Break > Slight Break > No Break
Of course, there are numerous words used to describe various degrees of pants break, but it’s more of a continuum.
Break, like everything else, is subject to fashion and taste, but we believe that most men (especially those of modest stature) would be wise to avoid full break.
Because short men have a difficult time finding pants that are short enough to wear without being hemmed, they frequently settle for full break by default. This additional folding and stacking (excess break) makes their legs appear shorter, making them appear shorter.
It’s as if you’re broadcasting to everyone who sees you, “Pants are always too long for me.” Consider a teenager wearing his elder brother’s hand-me-downs or a small child who gained access to his father’s closet. Their pants would be rather long, wouldn’t they? We want shorter men to avoid this look at all costs!
The sweet spot is partial break, especially for casual pants like jeans and chinos.
If you’re younger or want to look more “on style,” go with no break. This is a fashionable appearance that also makes your legs appear longer.
If you prefer to wear straight-leg jeans, make sure the leg opening isn’t too large. Skinny jeans are likely to be a better option than straight fit jeans.
To Cuff or Not to Cuff?
Cuffing your jeans or rolling up the bottom 1-3 times has come and gone over the years. We don’t recommend cuffing if you’re wearing jeans in a more formal context because it’s a decidedly casual look (like with a blazer).
However, cuffing your jeans is quite acceptable in casual contexts. Contrary to popular opinion, this is also true for shorter men. Just make sure the cuffs are small and proportionate to your height.
We despise seeing shorter men cuff their jeans because they have to because their jeans are too long. Perhaps they could only locate a 30″ inseam when they really needed a 28″, so they cuffed them rather of having them hemmed.
If you cuff your jeans, make sure they’re nice and tapered with a smaller leg opening, just like when you wear them without a break.
Common Jeans Fit Problems for Shorter Men
Because the vast majority of big clothing labels disregard men 5’8″, “and under, shorter gentlemen face a slew of fit issues when purchasing jeans off the rack, which is why they frequently settle for ill-fitting jeans or pay what we call the tailor price.
Here are some of the most typical fit issues that men of average height face when wearing jeans, as well as some suggested solutions:
Fit Problem #1: Jeans are too long
This is by far the most prevalent issue that guys under 5’9″ face “encounter with jeans. Because most jeans manufacturers do not make jeans shorter than 30 inches, practically all off-the-rack jeans are overly long.
There are three options for dealing with this vexing issue:
- Cuff your jeans (quick and easy)
- Get your jeans hemmed (not as quick or easy)
- Buy shorter length jeans
Cuffing is the “quick and dirty” answer, but it is not for everyone. Having your jeans hemmed is a viable option, but it is both costly and time consuming.
Purchasing jeans that are the correct length from the start is the ideal approach, and Peter Manning NYC is the finest location to get jeans created exclusively for men 5’8″ and lower.
Fit Problem #2: Rise is too low
While low rise jeans have been “in style” for years, they aren’t always the most flattering fit for everyone, especially shorter men.
Men frequently purchase low rise jeans and pull them up to sit on their natural waist. This causes crotch discomfort, and the jeans eventually fall down to the hips throughout the day.
A “normal” rise is the best option for the majority of men. This lengthens your legs and balances your figure. In our humble view, it’s also far more comfy.
Fit Problem #3: Jeans are too baggy
Depending on your age, you may recall a time when baggy jeans were popular. The more baggy, the better. Fortunately, those days are passed!
Baggy jeans, in our opinion, do not look good on anyone, and this is especially true for men of shorter stature.
When your jeans are too big, you get the “child playing dress up” appearance. It’s as if you’re wearing your older brother’s clothes. That’s not a good look!
Baggy jeans are too big everywhere. There’s just too much fabric all over the place, causing folding and stacking in all the wrong places. At best, this conceals your attractive shape. At worst, it makes you appear shorter and bulkier than you are.
Fit Problem #4: Details are wrong
This may be the most subtle and insidious issue that men face when trying to buy jeans that fit and flatter their figure. Even if you discover a pair of jeans with the correct inseam and a flattering style, they are still sized for a larger man.
Have you ever put on a pair of jeans that fit perfectly only to discover that the rear pockets were dangling down far too far? Have you ever worn distressed jeans and noticed that the fades around the knees are actually below your knees and over your shins? This is due to the jeans being designed for a larger, taller frame.
Unfortunately, this is not something that can be rectified at the tailor. It’s simply something that many men have had to accept. And these elements are a dead giveaway that the clothing was not designed specifically for you. When these facts are incorrect, they broadcast your size – and not in a good manner.