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How to measure boys and men for trousers

Wearing trousers that fit properly makes all the difference in how you look and feel. Trousers that are too big may look unprofessional and cause you to look larger then you are. Trousers that are too small can cause chafing, skin irritation and make it difficult to be comfortable when you sit. Measuring boys and men for the right trouser size is simple and will allow you to walk into most any store and successfully find a pair of trousers that looks good and feels comfortable.

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  1. Find the waist size of the man or boy using a measuring tape. Most men and boys trousers have a natural waistline about 7.5 or 10 cm (3 or 4 inches) above the hip bones. Lay the measuring tape against their skin and wrap it around their waistline until the end overlaps.

  2. Align the end of the measuring tape with the portion of tape that's wrapped around the waist. Find the number that lines up with the measuring tape end to determine waist measurement.

  3. Measure the boy or man's inseam by having him hold one end of the measuring tape at the inner portion of the upper thigh where it meets the crotch area. Bring the other end of the measuring tape down, along the leg, stopping about 5 cm (2 inches) below the ankle bone.

  4. Write both the waist and inseam measurements on an index card. Keep the card in your wallet to assist in finding the correct-sized pair of trousers. Most men's trousers are sized according to waist and inseam and boys trousers often have a size chart to coordinate waist and inseam with trouser size.

  5. Tip

    As boys grow, measure waist and inseam often to adjust trouser size.


    When a boy or man is in-between sizes, buy trousers that are too long, rather than too big in the waist. Hemming trousers is less time-consuming and cheaper then having the waist taken in.

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Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Index card
  • Pen

About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.

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