Difference Between Male & Female Pants

Written by amy guettler
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Difference Between Male & Female Pants
The differences among trousers made for men and women are often subtle. (Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images)

Whether it's jeans, dress trousers or more casual designs, the differences between trousers designed for men and those designed for women are subtly varied. As most trousers are crafted in the same manner, it's often just little distinctions that separate a man's pant from those designed for a woman.

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Men's Sizing

Perhaps the largest distinction between men's and women's trousers is in the way they are sized. Men's trousers tend to be visibly wider and longer than those made for the opposite sex, and are marked with two numbers to label size --- one indicating the waist size and one signifying the inseam, or leg length --- in inches. For example, a pair of male trousers marked with the numbers "36-34" is designed for a man with a 36-inch waist and legs that are roughly 34 inches long from the inseam.

Women's Sizing

Trousers sized for women are marked with just one even number starting at zero. There is no industry-wide standard for sizing women's trousers, so a size 10 purchased from one designer could vary substantially from the same size of another manufacturer. Furthermore, rather than measuring the inseam to determine the trousers' length, there are just four common choices --- petite, short, regular and long.

The Rise

The rise of a pair of trousers determines how high up on the waist they sit. Although all types of rises are available both to men and women, women can often wear a low-rise pant and find it very flattering, whereas most men would shy away from wearing trousers that sit so low to the waist. Medium-rise trousers rest just below the navel --- a cut that flatters almost any body type, male or female.

Colour and Pattern

While a huge variety of colours are available to both sexes, women are far more likely to choose brighter coloured, patterned or decorated trousers. Men, on the other hand, tend either to stick to traditional men's patterns such as hounds tooth, pinstripe or plaid, or to solid, darker coloured trousers.

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