As more of us move back into working in the office, you may find that you need to refresh your dress pants collection. Sweatpants can’t cut it in the office, and if you spent the pandemic getting in shape, your old dress pants might not fit anymore. But you may find that you have trouble finding dress pants that fit your new athletic frame.
Getting athletic dress pants is a matter of picking the right style and adjusting how you measure. Read on to learn more about how to get these pants to fit you and where to find the best athletic dress pants on the market.
1. Learn How Pants Should Fit You
Before we dive into how to pick out the right pair of athletic fit pants, let’s talk some about how dress pants are supposed to fit. You want your pants to fit well across your seat – if there are horizontal lines where the pants are pulling across your seat and groin, you need to go up a size. But you also don’t want there to be so much sagging that you can’t see your rear in the pants.
Your pants should sit at the top of your shoes and drape just a little when you’re standing straight up. If your pants don’t touch your shoes, they’re too short; if they slouch onto the tops of your shoes, they’re too long. The way the pants fit down the rest of your leg is a matter of style, which we’ll discuss more later.
2. Know How to Measure for Pants
When you go to buy pants, the first thing you’ll need to know is your measurements. Men’s pants are sized with two different measurements: your waist measurement and your inseam measurement. The waist measurement comes first, followed by the inseam measurement – 38x32 pants will fit a man with a 38-inch waist and a 32-inch inseam.
To measure your waist size, wrap a tape measure around your waist, right around your belly button. Make sure you aren’t wrapping the tape measure around the pants you’re wearing over a belt, and make sure it’s snug but not tight. To measure your inseam, have a partner measure from the crotch seam of the pants you’re wearing to the spot where you’d like the pants to fall.
3. Learn the Different Pant Styles
There are a few different fits you can choose from when you’re shopping for dress pants. In general, these range from skinny fit to classic fit, and, as we’ll discuss more later, you probably want to land somewhere in the middle.
Skinny-fit pants fit closely to your body all the way down your legs, tapering close to your ankle and generally coming with a low-rise waist. Slim-fit pants tend to hug closely to your seat and thighs and also have a narrow taper down the leg, although they’re a little wider at the ankle than skinny fits.
Modern-fit pants have a little bit of a straighter leg and don’t fit as tightly on your seat and thighs. Classic-fit pants tend to go more or less straight down from your hips and offer a fuller fit across the seat and thighs. Both of these styles tend to sit closer to your natural waist than the slimmer styles.
4. Focus on the Seat Size
When you’re picking athletic clothes, you should actually focus on pants that fit you through the seat rather than at the waist. When you have more athletic legs, you’re more likely to have a larger rear, and your waist may tuck in a little more. It’s better to have pants that are slightly loose in the waist than too tight in the seat.
For most men, their seat is about six inches bigger around than their waist. Before you go shopping for pants, measure your seat size by placing the tape measure around the widest part of your hips and rear and measuring with the tape measure snug but not tight. Then simply subtract six inches to get your waist size – if your seat measures 42 inches, you’ll want to go for pants with a waist size of 36.
5. Avoid Skinny Fits
In most cases, the pant style you pick will depend entirely on how you want your pants to fit on your legs. But if you’re shopping for more athletic legs, it’s best to avoid the slimmer fits. In particular, try to avoid pants that are listed as being skinny or extra-slim fit.
Although having pants that show off your muscles may seem like a good thing, these pants can actually give you something of a muffin-top effect. This is especially true if you’re built up top, too; you may start to look top-heavy rather than as trim as you are. Instead, go for a slim or modern fit, depending on how thick your legs are and what fits you best.
6. Consider Tailoring
One of the best ways to get a pair of pants that fits you correctly is to get them tailored. If you’re buying pants off the rack, you might have to get the waist taken in to fit you appropriately. Buying pants designed for athletic bodies can help you to avoid this extra step.
In many cases, dress pants may not be exactly the length you need them to be, even if you get the proper inseam length. Getting your pants hemmed can provide that polished look you want from your dress pants. Many clothing companies will even offer this service, so your pants arrive tailored to perfection.
Find the Best Athletic Dress Pants
Buying athletic dress pants can seem challenging since your pants have to accommodate your wider legs. The first step is to know how to measure for your pants and then opt for wider fits. You should focus on getting pants that fit your seat and consider getting them tailored for that perfect fit.
If you’d like to find the best athletic dress pants around, check out the rest of our site at Bradley Allen. We are a men’s clothing company that specializes in dress apparel for muscular builds. Shop our dress pants today and discover apparel that’s stylish, professional, and designed to fit your build!