How to Find Pants that Fit

How to Find Pants that Fit

It’s all about the rise.  If you’re confused about long, medium or short rise, you’re not alone.  I didn’t understand about rise until I took image consulting classes.  And I struggled to find pants that fit well, as do many women.  If you’re interested in becoming a stylist, I recommend classes with the Academy of Professional Image and business coaching with Stylist Modi.  However, if you’re happy in your career and just want a better-fitting pair of pants, read on…

Long, Medium or Short Rise:  The Key to a Great Fit in Pants

The rise in a pair of pants is the distance in the front from the waistband to the crotch seam.  It is usually 7-12″ long.  However, in a pair of low-rise jeans it might be much less than that.  People don’t have the same rise, and knowing yours will make it easier to buy pants that fit.  Take a tape measure and measure the difference between where you want your pants to sit (at your waist, just below, or even lower than that…) and where you want the crotch to be.  Most women do not want extra space here, so measure carefully.  If your rise is closer to 7″ you might look for pants with a lower rise.  A medium (mid) rise is 8-9″ and more than that is a long rise.

Practical Application: Muffin Top, a Fuller Tummy or Short Legs?

Take a little tape measure along when shopping in the store, so you can measure the rise before you take a pair of pants to the dressing room.  Saves time and confusion!  If you’re shopping on line, they usually list the rise measurement in the description of the garment.  If you have love handles and muffin top is an issue,  low rise jeans may accentuate that.  Conversely, if you have a full tummy, high-waisted jeans (jeans with a higher rise) may increase the appearance of a tummy.  In either case, look for jeans listed as medium-rise.  If your legs are short in comparison to your torso, pants with a low rise will make them look shorter.  Pick pants with a medium to high rise to lengthen the appearance of your legs.

The Rear View

Pants are not made the same in the rear, either!  If your bum is flat, or full, you need to look for pants with either less or more room in the seat.  Again, use your tape measure and figure out how many inches you want to cover back there.  Use that measurement to help find pants that fit in the seat.  If you want additional help, I recommend FitCode.  It’s an on-line quiz that will ask questions about your favorite jeans and make recommendations for brands and styles that fit and flatter.  It’s how I learned about Kut from the Kloth Diana skinny jeans – a tried and true fit for me!

Please post a comment to let me know about your strategies to find a great-fitting pair of pants!  Visit my website at, follow me on Instagram @getrealimage and on Facebook.

Confidently yours,