Low-Rise vs Short Rise?

I get this question (or some version of it) all the time: I bought low-rise jeans and they were HUGE on my waist- I measured them and they were INCHES bigger than the labeled size. What gives? and why should I consider short rise, then anyway?

I figured since I mentioned our new, true “short rise” jean in my last post, it would be as good a time as any to address the issue.

What is Short-Rise?
Many shorter men complain that when they were trousers, they experience bagginess and bunching in the crotch that is both uncomfortable and looks unprofessional. The problem is usually easily resolved by purchasing the proper rise. Rise refers to the measurement from crotch to waist. Most pants available off the rack are “regular rise” (11 inches or more, based on a size 34 waist pant). This can be too much for men under 5’9”, many of which are actually short rise (10 inches or less for a size 34 waist pant). The shorter rise is what eliminates all of the bagging and bunching at the crotch, front or back.

Below: Short -Rise Khaki Trousers

Short Rise Trouser

What is Low-Rise?
There are many pants in stores today labeled low rise. This is not to be confused with short rise. Low rise simply means that the pant sits below the natural waist. The rise on these pants would be the distance from the crotch to the imaginary waist (ie where the waist would be if not lobbed off so the pants sit lower than the waist). They are sized based on the imaginary waist, but the measurement at the band may be an inch or two larger. Therefore, if you have a short rise, the fit may be awkward, since the pants will likely rest at your natural waist and be an inch or two larger than the labeled waist size. One tip, try on a size or two smaller than you typically wear, or search for a manufacturer whose jeans are naturally cut shorter in the rise, such as Silver Jeans (pictured below).

“Grayson”Silver Jeans ” Relaxed-Fit, Low-Rise, Bootcut, Medium Dark Vintage Premium Denim by Silver Jeans.

That is whay we carry so many short-rise products. They are often the best solution for shorter men. In fact, it’s the best thing you didn’t know you needed (so say many of my customers when they by our khakis and find that for the first time ever- lo and behold they love the way they look and feel in their pants! Check out our testimonials).

The unfortunate part is that true short-rise pants are hard to find in regular department stores or mall stores (who do stock regular and long-rise !!!) and pants can’t be altered by a tailor to be short rise, either! The specialty retailer is one way to go. An online retailer specializing in short men’s apparel, like ForTheFit.com – will probably offer the best selection.


Consuelo Bova,
C.E.O. of ForTheFit.com,
“The Nation’s Premier Short Men’s Clothing Retailer”

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6 responses to “Low-Rise vs Short Rise?

  1. Pingback: guy clothing

  2. Pingback: The long & shirt of it: A primer on short men’s shirts « Short Memo: an Insider’s Guide to Short Men’s Clothes and Fashion

  3. Pingback: The Measure of a Man: A resource for the ladies… « Short Memo: an Insider’s Guide to Short Men’s Clothes and Fashion

  4. i have the same 😀

  5. 34x 34 Short rise pants and jeans. I need

    • Check out or full selection of short men’s pants and tall men’s jeans – we offer short and tall rise pants, trousers and jeans, as well as inseams from extra-short (26″) to extra tall (42″). We also carry many styles unhemmed, if you prefer to determine a more specific length with your tailor. We look forward to serving you

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