Have you ever worn a pair of pants that fit like a glove?
Most men will answer in the affirmative. But over time, you notice the small differences: a pair of pants that doesn’t fit will slip over time without a belt. Or maybe it’s too tight and leaves a mark every time you put them on. Maybe the leg is too long and sometimes gets caught on the back of your boots.
There are a lot of ways in which a pair of pants can go wrong on its fit, leading to all sorts of problems with comfort and durability. But if you know your size and know where to find the right pants, you can change that equation entirely.
Step One: Know Your Numbers
If knowledge is power, then that’s the case with well-fitting pants, too. Knowing your numbers is important, but perhaps even more important would be to know which numbers to pay attention to.
- Waist: Put on your best-fitting pair of pants and read the waist number, typically the first number you’ll see on the tag. This is the size of the top of the pants when laid out flat.
- Inseam: Your inseam is the length of the pant leg down the inside. If you don’t know your inseam, you’ll either have a pair of pants that feels like shorts or a pair of pants that drags on the bottom of your shoe.
- Rise: The length of the rise is essentially the length of the top of the waist to the bottom of the crotch. This is why “low rise jeans” tend to hang low on the hips; there isn’t much room for them to move any higher.
Another variable to keep in mind: the bottom finish of your pant. Choosing between a simple hem (which is how most pants are cut) or a sewn cuff (in which the bottom is folded up) is a stylistic choice. If you tend to have shorter legs, keep the hem so you can always fold it up to suit your leg length as necessary.
Step Two: Picking Out Your Pants
Knowing these numbers can be as simple as measuring the best-fitting pair of pants you own or even visiting a tailor. But then you face another problem: finding a place that offers pants in exactly the size you need.
The Self Sizer collection at Berle is a good place to start, as we offer everything from denim flat front pants to worsted wool gabardine for suits. Pick a pair of pants you like and you’ll find that you can enter in all of the variables discussed above, making for a perfect-fitting pair of pants every single time.
Buying pants that you can essentially design yourself is the key to shopping for perfect-fitting pants online. Try to avoid the stores that only let you choose waist and length and look for something a little more specific. It may not fit like a glove, but it will feel like the next best thing.