If there is one aspect of a man’s wardrobe that seems to cause stress to almost all men, it is the humble short. Many men choose to avoid shorts entirely, and the rest seem to choose shorts styles that do not suit their size or shape. Too often, striving to look masculine, men opt for shorts that are too long, too baggy, too embellished or otherwise too ugly, holding back their summer style and depriving them of seasonal sophistication.

Shorts should make a man feel comfortable, not vulnerable. The key to feeling self-assured in shorts is choosing an inseam that suits a man’s unique body size and shape. Here are tips for measuring shorts inseams properly and shopping for men’s shorts that are fashion-forward.

What Is the Inseam?

The inseam is a pants measurement taken from where the legs and crotch meet to the bottom of the hem. It is merely one of several pants measurements that are essential for getting a good fit, but in shorts, it is perhaps the second most important measurement for a man to know — after the waist, of course. Unfortunately, choosing the right length inseam is not as straightforward as finding out a man’s waist measurement.

Just as an incorrect waist measurement results in trousers that are too tight (causing an unsightly swell above the waistband) or too loose (risking drooping), an incorrect inseam measurement has consequences in the look and feel of a pair of pants. An inseam that is too short may be too revealing, while an inseam could make a man appear shorter, stockier or simply woefully unfashionable.

Often, when men go shopping for men’s shorts they only consider the waist measurement and the total length of the short, but this is a mistake. The total length includes the space above the crotch, which means it provides no information about how far down the leg the shorts will fall. For style as well as comfort, it is imperative that every man understand the inseam measurement and use the inseam as a guide while shopping for shorts.

Measuring Shorts Inseams

The most accurate way to measure the inseam of any pair of trousers is standing up, but this method is a two-person job. One man wears the shorts in question and stands straight, looking ahead, while another person aligns a measuring tape with the inseam. The tape should begin at the crotch, below the fly where four seams meet, and it should run down one leg to the hem. The measuring tape should be relatively taught.

However, not all men have a helper to assist with inseam measurement. For men on their own, it is possible to measure the inseam of shorts laid on a flat surface. The method is roughly the same, though it can be more difficult to hold the measuring tape along the curve from the base of the crotch when the shorts are lying flat. It might be wise to take the measurement multiple times to ensure an accurate number.

Most men measure the inseam of shorts they feel comfortable in, as they can use that measurement to find shorts with similarly comfortable lengths. Yet, it might also be useful to measure shorts that look and feel wrong, so men do not make the same mistakes when continuing on their shorts shopping journey.

Choosing the Right Shorts

Many factors affect what inseam a man will prefer. A man’s height — to include both his torso length and his leg length — as well as his leg width are worth considering while shopping for men’s shorts. The general rule of thumb is to buy shorts that fall just above the knee, which is most often a 9- to 7-inch inseam. Though, men who never skip leg day might have the self-confidence to regularly wear shorts with a 5-inch inseam. Fashion experts often recommend huskier men to choose shorts that end at the knee, which can help elongate their frame, and this might mean opting for inseams of 10 inches or more. Ultimately, men should feel free to try on shorts with different inseam measurements to find exactly what works for them.

Every man should have the opportunity to wear shorts confidently and stylishly all summer long. By knowing more about the inseam, men will be able to find the perfect pair of shorts again and again.

How to Store and Protect Your 35mm Slides

Previous article

Long-Term Car Storage: Best Practices for Keeping Your Vehicle in Top Condition

Next article

You may also like