Note: This is a pretty old post that really needs to be updated. We’ll get to it soon!
In the meantime, if you really want to understand pants rise, I recommend reading this post I wrote for Primer Magazine instead:
It’s a much more accurate and helpful guide. Enjoy!
Are Low Rise Trousers the Only Option for Shorter Guys?
For us shorter guys, the biggest problem we often face is in finding trousers that fit us nicely, without having to spend a fortune taking them to the tailors to be adjusted so that they don’t look ridiculous.
While a trip to have your trousers altered may well turn out to be the inevitable endgame of a shopping trip, what other top tips will allow you to buy the best trousers to make the most of your modest height?
To Rise or Not to Rise?
Generally speaking, the advice given to shorter guys when it comes to trousers is to go for low rise options at all times. Why is it then, that so many short guys follow this advice yet still end up looking and feeling rather uncomfortable? The clue is to forget the legs for a moment, and take a look at your torso.
Getting Your Style in Proportion
What does your upper body look like in relation to your legs – is it in proportion, smaller, or does it appear bigger? By understanding this, you will be able to choose trousers much easier and ensure that any alterations you need will be minimal.
If your legs are short in proportion to your body, then choose a trouser that will sit a little higher. We are not talking about pulling them up to the point of looking like Simon Cowell, and you want to avoid looking too computer-geek, but it will make you look better.
On the other hand, should your legs be in proportion or appear longer than your body, then low rise is definitely the way to go. However, choosing low rise is only a part of finding the perfect trousers for your short frame.
As well as the rise, you also need to carefully consider the fit of your trousers. Hopefully you already know that you should be avoiding skinny trousers and denims – if not, then heed the warning now.
To elongate your legs you are best going for slim/tapered silhouettes. Should you take your trousers to the tailor, ensure that they fit in such a way that your trouser leg breaks a little over the shoe (or doesn’t break at all), this will make you look taller.
Our final tip is vital when it comes to formal trousers. Avoid trousers with cuffs at the bottom, at all costs.
Every inch that the trouser turns up is two inches off of your height in terms of perception, a style nightmare if ever there was one.