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You are currently viewing The Pant, Jean, Chino & Trouser Fit Guide (With Examples)

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So you have some queries regarding the fit of pants (trousers, if you’re English), jeans, or chinos – understandable; most people wear them, most days.

However, it’s difficult to concretely define ‘correct’ pant and jean fit, because there’s a lot of individual interpretation and misconceptions.

For the most complete and bespoke answer, I’d recommend checking out my awesome post on how clothes should fit (in general) alongside this article, which will help you evaluate if any piece of clothing you’re looking to pick up has the fit you’re looking for.

However, it’s still useful to have specific pointers for pant, jean, chino, and trouser fit.

Read on to discover:

  • How each element of pants should ideally fit for comfort and maximum aesthetics (trend independent), alongside pointers to help you know if they fit correctly, and aren’t too big or small.
  • How you might alter the above based on personal preference.
  • Elaborations on how this may differ between different pant styles, such as chinos and jeans.
  • Examples of good and bad trouser fits.




An Overview of How Pants, Jeans and Trousers Should Fit

Your pants or jeans should fit close to the body throughout, but not hug any contours. A comfortable fit with good aesthetics will allow easy insertion of fingers into the waistband, and feature 1″+ of room in the thigh, and  0.5″+ of room in the calf, with a gradual taper from the thigh to the hem.

To assist with this, I’ve prepared a helpful infographic:


Infographic for pant, jeans, chinos and trouser fit.


The next section will elaborate on each above detail further, from top to bottom (not anus, but pant hem).


Front, Sides, and Back (In General)

If you’ve read my other post on fit, congratulations, you’re ahead of the game.

But for those who haven’t (you really should, it could be life changing when it comes to your clothing), and to put the rules I outline in that post into the context of trousers, for a good pant fit ‘in general’, your trousers and jeans should:

  1. Look good; they should – at the very least – have a flattering silhouette. Ideally, all pants should also feature a clean drape, with uninterrupted lines, though this is more important and achievable on formal trousers. A large part of this is often having trousers with a ‘taper’, where the trouser circumference gradually reduces from a wider thigh, to a slimmer hem.
  2. Be comfortable; there should be no points of pressure anywhere on the garment, stood up, or sat down.
  3. Look like they should. You may desire different characteristics for different types of pants, such as the aforementioned ‘clean lines’ for dress trousers. Also, it’s of course down to your personal preference of if you feel your pants should be slimmer – more modern – or looser – more classic.




The ‘rise’ of a pair of pants is where the waistband sits in relation to your hip bones and ‘natural waist’ (natural waist: for simplicity, most people’s belly button/navel – but more generally, between your ribs and the top of your hips).

There’s three main pant rises, low, medium, and high rise, with ‘low’ rise hitting at the bottom of your hip bone, ‘medium’ rise hitting between the top and bottom of your hip bone, and ‘high’ rise hitting on or slightly above the top of your hip bone.

For further information, I wholly recommend you check out my awesome all inclusive post on trouser rises for pictures and more detailed descriptions of each trouser rise, and which you should wear.


An infographic outlining the three trouser rises.


Correct Fit

Stay with me when I say that there isn’t really a correct pant ‘rise’ – in almost all cases, it’s never wrong to wear a low, medium or high rise, in any style, with any body type.

However, they each have their advantages and disadvantages, and are more or less appropriate when paired with different types of pant styles, and body types – so, some work better than others.

In my opinion, getting these pairings spot on is not essential for a ‘correct’, perfect, fit, but a mismatch is okay for the average dresser.

For those looking to take their style and trouser fit to the next level, different rises and their appropriateness with different pant types are discussed later in this post, whereas which rise is best for your body type is, as aforementioned, covered in my super article on trouser rises.


Incorrect Fit

The only way a pant rise can be categorically ‘incorrect’ is if they fall abnormally high, or abnormally low; your pants shouldn’t hit much higher above your belly button or ribs, or much below the bottom of your hip bone. However, this isn’t really possible with off the rack pants, unless you buy 4+ sizes too big.

That said, as previously mentioned, certain body types and pant styles support different rises better than others, and may lead to a better aesthetic ‘fit’, with increased comfort. Though I don’t, some purists may consider ‘non-optimum’ rises for your body type or trouser style to give the pants an incorrect fit. Again, to avoid this, check out my post.




The trouser ‘waist’ is, simply, the waistband of the pant.

In pant sizing, this is usually represented in inches, that represent the circumference of the waist when buttoned. For example, a trouser with a 32″ waist will provide 32″ of fabric when buttoned.


Luke with two fingers poking into his trouser waistband.
My jean waistband, which I’m comfortable able to fit the height of one finger in. Though, you should be able to feel a bit of resistance.


Correct Fit

At any rise, when fully buttoned, your pant waist should sit snug enough to your body to ensure that the garment doesn’t fall down when you’re not wearing a belt, but not too tight that it digs into your stomach or hip bone. It should feel comfortable enough to wear all day from the get go.

Ideally, you should be able to comfortably slip a height of one finger – not much more, and not much less – between your body and the pants without trouble.


Incorrect Fit

TOO SMALL: Your waistband fit is too small if it’s unquestionably digging into your stomach uncomfortably when standing up, or sitting down.

A good test to check for this is to sit down, and evaluate if you can feel the waistband excessively pressing into your front. If you can, painfully or not, then they are definitely to tight.

Another giveaway sign – and this should be very obvious – is if you have to artificially ‘pull in’ your stomach to get the pants on.

TOO BIG: Conversely, the waist is too big if you can see an excessive visible gap directly after you put your pants on, and if, after moving around for a short amount of time, they’ve already fallen down your waist dramatically.

Another sign is if there is excessive bunching of fabric when you use a belt.


Trouser Hips


The ‘hips’ of a pair of pants or jeans are the area of fabric above each thigh, up until the waistband, extending around the side to the buttocks.


Luke pinching 1" of fabric of his trouser hip.
My pant hips, with 1″ exactly of extra fabric.


Correct Fit

The fabric of your trouser and jean hips should lay flat, and allow for manoeuvrability by featuring at least 1″+ of pinchable room.

Your pocket outlines, and any flat items you place in your pocket, should not be excessively visible. With my jeans in the above example, a vague outline can be seen of my bulky phone.


Incorrect Fit

TOO SMALL: Some clear signs that your pant hips are too tight – and that you have too little extra fabric – is if your pant pockets (or pleats, if you have them) flare outwards or billow open, you can see the outline of your inside pockets, or thin items you’ve placed in them, or if you struggle to put items in your pockets.

Too tight hips will also result in unflattering pulling towards the centre front – the crotch – of your garment.

TOO BIG: Though uncommon, if there’s too much fabric in this area, it will just ‘look sloppy’™ – you can concretely test for this by putting your hands in your front pockets, and pulling forwards; anything more than about 1″ of room suggests there’s too much room in the hips or seat.


Pant Seat


The ‘seat’ of a pair of pants is the area of fabric under and around your buttocks.


Luke pinching 1" of fabric in his pant seat.
My pant seat, with 1″ exactly of extra fabric.


Correct Fit

The fabric of your pants and jeans in this area should lightly, but comfortably, hug your buttocks, without excess wrinkles.

Technically, you should be able to pinch 1″+ of fabric in this area. This will work with the extra fabric around your trouser hips to provide a full range of motion.


Incorrect Fit

TOO SMALL: If your pant seat is too tight, you’ll feel a pulling sensation, and it will visually appear wrinkled, with lines moving across your buttocks, and into your crotch area.

TOO BIG: If there’s too much fabric in the seat of your pants, it will sag downwards.




The ‘crotch’ of a trouser or jean is the area of fabric under and in front of your ‘package’, that connects the two trouser legs.


Man standing in ecru jeans showing the crotch area.
The crotch of these jeans are comfortable, and provide a suitable ‘allowance’.


Correct Fit

There should be enough room in your pant crotch so that… ‘your package’ … can operate without feeling like it’s been placed in a trash compactor. However, there shouldn’t be too much room so that that area sags down, and draws attention to itself – for this, you will want a relatively trim fit, with perhaps only an excess of 0.5″ of extra room.

An ideal fit should have the fabric lay flat.


Incorrect Fit

TOO SMALL: Trust me, you’ll be able to tell if this area is too tight.

TOO BIG: To tell if there’s too much fabric in the crotch, I’d recommend looking in a mirror, and checking if the waistband to crotch distance looks imbalanced, in favour of the ‘crotch’. This will likely only be the case in ‘drop crotch’ trousers, where the effect is purposeful.

Technically, the waistband to crotch distance determines the trouser ‘rise’, however that’s assuming the crotch is placed correctly, with only the waistband moving.




The ‘thigh’ is the part of the pants on either leg between your crotch and kneecaps.


Luke pinching 1.5" of fabric in the pant thigh.
The thighs of my jeans, with 1.5″ extra fabric.


Correct Fit

You should be able to pinch 1-2″ of pant fabric from each thigh, pulling away.

For those gifted with thick thighs, such as myself, it’s common that you think you have the right pant fit, as everything else – waist included – fits correctly, despite your thighs being way too tight – don’t be fooled.


Incorrect Fit

I know a lot about this, as it’s where I’ve historically had most problems with my trouser fit.

TOO SMALL: Your trouser thigh fits too tight if your trouser is hugging your leg, with no extra fabric available to pinch. If you can’t pinch your thigh fabric, or it’s very difficult, then you have too little fabric in the thigh area.

If you’re unsure, a sure fire way is to try sitting down, and evaluating how it feels – if you can feel pulling in the thigh, or you can visibly see the trouser seams pulling, then unfortunately your trouser thighs are too tight.

TOO BIG: Your pant thighs are generally ‘too big’ if you can pinch more than 1.5-2″ of fabric in the thigh area.




The ‘calf’ is the part of the pants on either leg between your kneecaps, and the hem (bottom of the leg).


Luke pinching 0.5" of fabric in the pant calf.
The calf midpoint of my jeans, with 0.5″ extra fabric. This produces a slim finishing to the look.


Correct Fit

You should be able to pinch 0.5-1.5″ of fabric at the mid point between the knee and the hem.

Due to the nature of anatomy, there will be less extra fabric available around your knee cap. This may feel uncomfortable for you when you kneel, or sit down.

It’s not incorrect to have the calf fit closer or further away to the limits of the 0.5-1.5″ range, and is completely dependent on the look you’re going for, and your body type, which is discussed later in the post.

This is a less ‘problematic’ fit point when it comes to comfort, compared to common areas of discomfort such as the thigh, but has more influence on the final aesthetic of the piece, as it largely determines the proportions and ‘tapering’ of the garment.


Incorrect Fit

TOO SMALL: Your pant’s calf fabric should not hug your calf muscles.

TOO BIG: Your pant’s calf fabric should – for best aesthetics – not exceed 2″ at the midpoint. However, this is relative to the body type of the wearer, and the look they’re going for.


Leg Opening


The pant’s ‘leg opening’ is the width of the ‘hem’ of a trouser, which is the hole you put your feet through, at the closest point to the floor.

A pants’s leg opening is rarely problematic when it comes to comfort, but has a large influence on the final aesthetic of the trousers. This is because the leg opening is often linked to your calf tapering, the fabric immediately before, which in turn determines the ‘taper’ of the leg (difference between the top and bottom circumference).

This means that, unless you have a specialty pant cut, such as ‘boot cut’, your leg opening will be the same as, or less then, your calf measurement. Consequently, if you want a specific leg opening, it will determine the calf tapering, so it’s important to get it right.


Tape measure showing a pant hem opening of 8".
An 8″ leg opening of my high rise dress pants.


Correct Fit

A leg opening should generally not be less than 6″, or more than 10″. This is quite a wide range, mainly to take into account all different tastes, statures, and body types.

More specifically, based on independent research (conducted by yours truly), I would say that, for men between 5″7 and 6″4:

  • For casual pants, jeans and chinos, a leg opening of 6.5″-7.75″ is appropriate.
  • For formal pants and trousers, a leg opening of  7.5-9″ is appropriate, with all the numbers pointing to 8″ as the ‘average’, and safest formal trouser leg opening.


But there are some things you should consider to help place yourself at the upper, or lower end of the above ranges:

  • If you want your pants to have more of a ‘modern’ fit, your leg opening and resulting calf tapering should generally be slimmer compared to if you want a more ‘classic’ look, which will require a larger leg opening, and resulting calf tapering.
  • If you are larger set, to look proportional, you’ll be best with a wider leg opening, and more generous calf measurement, compared to an average or slimmer gentleman who will look best with a smaller opening.
  • Ideally, you should choose the correct pant break for you, and adjust your hem width to a width that works best for that break.

For all the juicy numbers, and more detail into this, I’ve created the ultimate guide to trouser leg openings and hem widths, which will guide you to a leg opening that may be best for you.


Incorrect Fit

Anything outside of the above range of 6-10″ is generally considered an ‘incorrect’ leg opening in the modern era, unless you’re substantially outside average proportions. But, this takes into account all heights, weights, and preferences – your ‘ideal’ range will be much narrower, depending on what looks proportional on your height and weight, as discussed above.


Pant Length & Trouser ‘Break’


The pant ‘length’, or ‘inseam’ – as it’s technically referred to – of trousers, is the length from the crotch, to the leg opening (hem) of the trousers.

The pant ‘break’ is the way the pant fabric rests against the top of the shoe you’re wearing.

Both of these are related: as the trouser inseam increases, so does the trouser break.

Pants may also have a ‘cuff’, which is where the bottom of the trouser is turned up on itself.

To help outline your options, I’ve created a nifty infographic that outlines the 5 pant breaks:


An infographic detailing different pant lengths.


Correct Fit

Though the pant length allows for a degree of individual interpretation, a correct break should rest somewhere between a ‘full break’ – 1″ of fabric at the front of the shoe, for a very conservative look – and a ‘no break’ – the fabric just skimming the top of the shoe, for a very modern look.

You may even opt for a ‘cropped’ pant leg, which is where there is about 0.5″ gap between the shoe top, and trouser bottom, for an overly fashionable look.

That said, I feel the safest trouser break, for any person (and body type, and age, and occasion – and… anything else) is the ‘half break’, which involves about a 0.5″ overlap of fabric at the shoe at the front.

However, like with pant rise and the leg opening, a fully ‘correct’ and aesthetically maximised break will depend on your height, body type, style preferences, and type of trouser.

Sadly, this can get a bit in depth; you can check out which break is best for you, based on several personal factors, in my complete guide to trouser breaks.

But, as a quick summary of some of the main points:

  • A slimmer fitting pair of pants should have less of a break compared to wider trousers, which would look more correct with a slight or heavier break.
  • Those more classically inclined, who are perhaps taller, and may be heavier set, will usually find that they’re balanced out better with a slightly longer ‘full’ break, compared to those with more modern preferences, who may be shorter and slimmer, who will often find they’re balanced out by a slight quarter break, or no break.
  • Most of the time, your trouser break should be sloped, meaning it should have a shorter length at the front, such as 0.5″, compared to the back, of about 0.75″.


I discuss which break is best for certain types of pants later in this article.

Also, if you get your pants cuffed, the cuff should generally fall within a depth of 1.5″ (3.5) – 2.5″ (6cm).


Incorrect Fit

Though there’s a wide range of ‘acceptable’ pant lengths and breaks, there’s a point where your trousers can become too long, or too short.

Your pants should not be too long so that the amount of fabric resting on top of the shoe looks ‘sloppy’, or catches under your shoe, or be too short so that more than 0.75″ of sock shows when your standing up normally.

That said, again, some (not me) may consider a break that doesn’t perfectly compliment factors such as your body type, and the occasion you’re attention, as having a ‘bad’ fit.

However, unlike rise, which I feel is less important if not matched to body type, I do feel a trouser length and break that’s too far either side of the ‘perfect’ length constitutes an ‘incorrect’ fit.

In this case, an incorrect break for a shorter gentleman would likely be a full break, which isn’t technically outside the overall acceptable range, but will likely swamp them. Contrastingly, an incorrect break for a taller gentleman would likely be having no break at all, which again, can work depending on your circumstance, but will likely look off on taller statures.


Pant Fit and Personal Preference

Some of the points above that make up the fit of a pair of pants, such as the trouser rise, calf, leg opening and length, I feel can vary within acceptable boundaries to produce different stylistic looks that won’t compromise function or comfort, and are down to individual interpretation and bodily proportions.

However, other points, such the waist, trouser seat, crotch and thigh should remain within the discussed boundaries, as I feel that when it comes to comfort and ‘non style’ aesthetics, the ‘correct’ fit provides the best outcome.

If your pants have stretch, such as stretch jeans, you could potentially get away with having these fit points slightly tighter than the discussed acceptable ranges. However, this shouldn’t be encouraged, as there will be unflattering pulling, and over time, it creates a warped idea in your mind of how all trousers should fit. Trust me, I’m guilty of this.

Contrastingly, in most cases, you can choose to add 0.5″ on to the upper boundaries of the rules for a more relaxed fit, that doesn’t enter the territory of being ‘baggy’.


How Different Types of Pants Should Fit

Though the above proposed pant fit guide is general, and is perfect for all types of pants, from jeans to dress trousers, the advanced dresser may want to be aware of some traditional subtleties and allowances between styles, which could allow them to produce a perfect look.

For example, though there’s not a hard and fast rule, less formal types of pants, such as jeans, generally look more appropriate with a less formal rise (medium and low), and can be worn a bit tighter than recommended compared to more formal types of pants, such as dress trousers, which generally look more appropriate with a higher rise, and should stick to the fit guidance.


How Jeans Should Fit

Formality: Low

Fit: As described, or slightly tighter (with stretch)

Most Appropriate Rise: Low or Medium Rise

Most Appropriate Break: No break to medium break, potentially cuffed (rolled up, rather than sewn in). The hem should be cut straight.


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As the textured cotton denim fabric makes jeans low formality pants, they should ideally feature a low formality fit. This consists of a low to medium rise, with some sort of medium to slight break. To help aid in reducing the formality, I personally enjoy cuffing my denim at the hems.

Some feel high rise denim can look ‘old man-ish’. Though I think denim is, as I’ve mentioned, best worn in a low-medium rise capacity (as it’s much easier to obtain, and looks like what you’d expect from denim), I think a high rise pair of denim, perhaps with other details like side adjusters and cuffs, could be a really cool unique piece – but this is truly for the style connoisseur.

In terms of the actual fit of the piece, I personally like my denim fitting as described earlier in the post – that’s how pants should fit. However, these days most jeans are constructed of a cotton-stretch blend, which makes them wearable with a tighter fit. If this if your style, then go for it, however I will caution that it won’t be as comfortable as a ‘correct’ fit, and the fabric will not drape as nicely, with unbroken lines.


How Chinos Should Fit

Formality: Low to medium.

Fit: As described, or slightly tighter (with stretch)

Most Appropriate Rise: Any rise, from low to high – but will produce different aesthetics.

Most Appropriate Break: No to medium break for low to medium rise, potentially cuffed (rolled up, rather than sewn in). For more formal, high rise chinos, I’d say anywhere from a quarter to no break is appropriate, which may feature a sewn in cuff. Casual chinos should feature a straight hem, while more formal chinos can feature a slanted hem.


Unlike jeans, chino fabric is a tightly woven twill, with a smooth finish, making chinos inherently more formal. This means they can have a more formal or casual fit, which can consist of anywhere from a low to high rise, with a no to medium break.

Again, some feel high rise chinos look ‘old man-ish’. But to me, like with the aforementioned denim, I feel it’s really dependent on the details. For example, I feel this could easily look terrible if you’re wearing a belt, if your trousers are oversized (so don’t fit the fit guide!), or if you’re doing something like tucking in a polo shirt. For high rise chinos, I similarly enjoy the look of side adjusters, a light or no break, and potentially a pleat or two.

For the chino’s fit, I would again advise sticking to this post’s guidelines. But again, most chinos feature a cotton stretch fabric, allowing you to wear them tighter, without movement penalties, if you prefer – though, I still feel you incur a comfort and aesthetic penalty. Alternatively, you can wear them slightly looser for an acceptably more relaxed, or tailored look.


How Trousers and Dress Pants Should Fit

Formality: Medium to high.

Fit: As described, or slightly looser.

Most Appropriate Rise: Medium or High rise.

Most Appropriate Break: No break to full break, with a slanted hem.



As trousers (suit pants, or odd pants), usually feature more formal details, such as a permanent ironed crease at the front, and more formal fabrics and colours, they are inherently more formal, which, again, suggests they’d be best suited to a more formal fit, of a medium to high rise, and anywhere from no break to a full break, depending on factors outlined in my super duper trouser break guide.

In my opinion, though acceptable, low rise trousers should be avoided. Not only is there a mismatch between the formality of the trouser and a low rise, but when your jacket is buttoned, it’s more likely that the low rise will expose a triangle of your shirt between your jacket and trousers, which provides visual awkwardness. This is especially true for most jackets, which have open quarters, which is where the fabric either side of the button curves outwards.

Medium to high rise trousers will go a good way to reducing the possibility of this shirt exposure, and I feel just look more appropriate when worn more formally, or with a suit.

However, if you decided to opt for high rise trousers while wearing a tie, you’ll have to decide if you:

  1. Abide to the rule of having your tie tip hit your trouser waistband – in which case, you’ll have to tie you tie quite short, by using a thicker tie knot.
  2. Wear your tie longer, but inside you trouser waistband – can look odd to those who haven’t seen this before.
  3. Wear your tie longer than your trouser waist, but outside your trouser waistband – I feel this looks great. However, it gives a slightly more nonchalant vibe (called ‘sprezzatura’), and the tie could pop out from under your jacket when buttoned.

Additionally, again, as I’ve mentioned for both jeans and chinos, if you decide to opt for high rise trousers, I would personally opt to find ones with side adjusters instead of belt loops, as a high rise with a belt can look awful, and visually unevenly split you in half.


Examples of Good Pant Fit

To put all of the above into perspective, I’ve found it helpful to look at real world examples. So, in this section, we’ll quickly overview one successful, and one unsuccessful, jean, chino and trouser fit.




  • These jeans fit well, because it’s clear that they’re not too tight, or too loose, anywhere – you can see excess fabric in the thigh on the left leg, and the jeans aren’t hugging his calf.
  • That said, they are relatively tapered, and have a close cut to the calf. However, this is a stylistic choice, and does not compromise the fit of the piece, and fall within the acceptable ranges.
  • He’s finished the jeans with a turn up, which looks to produce a quarter break on his boots, which is acceptable for the style, and formality of the outfit.
  • On a completely unrelated note, Ryan looks fire in this picture; really good style.




  • Me now – these chinos fit well because, again, they leave a sensible amount of room in all areas.
  • They’re a ‘relaxed tapered’ cut, which means there’s plenty of room throughout the piece. Referring to the earlier section on personal preference and pant fit, this is an example of a fit that has slightly more fabric than the boundaries suggest. Though they don’t look slim, I still think these trousers looks great, and the extra room really goes a long way for comfort.
  • However, much more fabric than this, and these pants would start to look sloppy.
  • They are finished off with a no break/cropped look, which is perfectly acceptable for casual chinos. However, some of you may remember the rule that the less break you have, the narrower your trousers should be. The above example is really pushing the limits of this rule, as the no break has been paired with a proportionally wide leg opening. However, I think they still look good. Any wider than they are now, and I would have trouble, though.
  • These pants are a good example of how you can bend the rules, and still get away with it.




  • The above pants look to have a medium rise, which is formal enough for dress pants, and I feel looks good in this example.
  • This gentleman’s trousers look to have extra room in the thigh, and we can clearly see excess fabric in the calf, aiding comfort, and allowing the creation of clean lines.
  • When standing straight, I would estimate the trouser break to be a full break; this is perhaps one place where this outfit could improve, as elsewhere, it has a relatively trim and modern styling, which would potentially match better with a less conservative half break, and make the trousers drape better.
  • On top of this, though this is a good look, the trousers aren’t falling as cleanly as I’d expect dress pants to fall. It’s possible that the fabric is low quality, and doesn’t fall well. Alternatively, though it looks like he has extra room, he may benefit with a little bit more room in the thigh and hips, to help create more of a definite taper.


Examples of Bad Pant Fit



  • These pants are way too tight. I’m not going to go with the silly joke that they’re so tight, the knee caps have burst out, but it wouldn’t be a stretch to imagine that it takes 30 minutes for this guy to take these off.
  • We can tell these jeans are too tight because they follow the contour of his leg muscles.
  • This results in a leg opening that is too small, so has to be worn with a cropped break.
  • Baggier jeans would balance this guy’s proportions, and make him look more formidable, and someone to take serious.




  • To many, these above chinos may look like they fit correctly.
  • Though you may be able to get away with something like this, I’d caution that they’re, again, too tight. I can’t see any extra fabric in the thigh or calf. This very close cut consequently results in a small leg opening, which again has to be worn cropped, otherwise it wouldn’t break well into the shoe.
  • Though you might be able to get away with this if you’re super fashionable, most people would likely not be able to pull this off, so a more generous allowance of fabric in the thighs and calf would provide a greater hem opening, which would broaden the leg visually, and enhance comfort.




  • Not much to say here – in fact, these trousers fit so tight, they’ve only been able to get them on a mannequin. You might be able to get away with these if they were in a jean or chino style, as they are likely to have stretch in the fabric, but if these are 100% wool, you’d only be wearing pants for about 5 minutes before they split, and you’d be left exposed.
  • The fabric sits flush against the figure’s hips, thighs and calf muscles, which in real life, would be very stiff and painful.


How do You Know if Your Pants Fit Properly

So, you know ‘how’ your pants should fit properly, but how do you pull it all together without having to go through this post as a checklist?

Well, I’ve already sort of covered it at the top of this post, with my reference to my 3-step system. They should look good, be unequivocally comfortable, and look like they should.

However, it’s also important to ensure that this is also the case when you’re wearing the complete outfit, with shirt tucked in, belt and shoes on, and when you’re in every day movements. For example, it’s also a good idea to strike a few common poses, such as kneeling, bending over or sitting down, and evaluating if the trouser still look good, and are comfortable.

If you’re looking for more information on finding clothes that fit, and knowing if clothes fit when you’re trying them on in the store, I’d recommend checking out this article I’ve written on 16 top tips for getting the correct fit.


The Low Down…

Making sure your pants fit can honestly make or break an outfit.

They single handily make up around half of your visual composition, so if the fit is off kilter, and they don’t produce clean, aesthetic lines, there’s little you can do to salvage a ‘perfect’ look, even if everything elsewhere is perfected.

But now you’re equipped with the knowledge to be able to pick pants, jeans, chinos and trousers that fit you and your body type correctly, so you never have to worry about knowing if your pants fit correctly again.

But that’s only half the battle.

Luckily, I’ve written a post that goes over how to actually buy pants and jeans that fit you like they’re supposed to on you, which you can check out here (and I’d, of course, highly recommend).


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