Chinos are in high fashion these days. They’re a perfect alternative to jeans due to their versatility and comfortability. You can wear them as pants or shorts, giving you even more outfit combos. However, if you’re going to rock this outfit right, you need to ensure that your chinos aren’t too tight.
So, how tight should men’s chinos be? As a general rule, men’s chinos should fit just right around your waist so there wouldn’t be any need for a belt. You should also be able to grab at least an inch of material around your thigh region. If you can’t do this, then it’s probably too tight.
Too tight chinos can not only be uncomfortable, but they can also be unflattering too. So to ensure that you don’t make the mistake of buying chinos that are too tight, we’ve highlighted 7 ways to know if your chinos are too tight.
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#1. The Seat Test
Take a seat, will you? Now, what do you observe?
Does it feel like those chinos are about to rip and expose where the sun don’t shine? It’s definitely too tight.
You should also try grabbing an inch of material off your thigh region. Can’t? Then it’s probably too tight.
In addition to that, check the waist area. If the chinos squeezes your waist in and are uncomfortable, then they’re too tight.
Ideally, you shouldn’t have to wear a belt when putting on chinos. It should be solely for cosmetic purposes. Nonetheless, it’s way better to wear a belt than have to be uncomfortable all day. Have it sit just right on your waist.
What to do: Your chinos waistline should be snug but not too tight. They should feel safe without the need to wear a belt. If you put on a belt and the waistline bunches up, you should take it in.
#2. Button Up
Can you button your chinos with ease, or do you have to breathe in and suck in your belly for the button to fit in? If it’s the latter, your chinos are definitely too tight.
But that’s not all for buttons. You also need to do another seat test. So, when you sit, do you feel an overwhelming need to unbutton your chinos?
Not because you’re about to eat a full dinner, but because your pants are cutting into your skin? If your answer is yes, then the chinos are too tight.
Sometimes if the button’s a bit too small, you’ll find that it slips out of the hole at the slightest movement if it’s too tight. Eventually, it could break. That’s when you know you have reached the limit.
What to do: Instead of buttons, you could go for chinos with a hook. So you don’t go popping buttons when those pairs of chinos become tight.
#3. Gaping pockets
Gaping pockets are a typical problem with plain-front trousers. Some call this “dog’s ears” because it causes the pockets to open and look like – well, dog ears. How unflattering is that?
These “dog ears” are a general pointer to the fact that the hips of the pants are probably too tight. And it’s never a good look.
If your chinos have gaping pockets, it will make your hips look wider. They’re a sign that your chinos are probably too tight.
So when choosing chinos, you should watch out for one with pockets that don’t remind others of dog ears.
They could have any of the three types of pockets – the vertical pockets, slanted front pockets, or western pockets.
Vertical pockets are common on dress pants. And when the pants don’t fit properly, they are the most prone to flaring out. If this happens, you can either get your chinos adjusted to fit you better, or you can go nuclear and sew the pockets shut.
Slanted front pockets, on the other hand, are typically found on some dress slacks. These are preferable to vertical pockets as they’re less likely to flare out even when the pants are too tight.
Finally, western pockets, also known as horizontal pockets, are commonly used on jeans and chinos. These types of pockets don’t flare out at all.
What to do: To avoid gaping pockets, you should go for chinos with western pockets. Apart from the fact that they don’t flare out, they’re also quite stylish.
#4. Stretched Out Seams
Another way to know if your chinos are too tight for you is to examine the seams. If you notice that they are stretched out, particularly at the hip region, then they’re too tight for you.
Sometimes you’d also notice the wearing of the inner thigh area because the seams are stretched out. This also shows that those pairs of chino pants are damn too tight.
What to do: Many times, manufacturers place allowances called darts on chinos pants. All you need to do is to loosen those darts out, and you would feel much better.
#5. Wrinkling Fabric
They’re several reasons why you could find wrinkles on your clothes. It could be that you’ve worn them for too long, or you just simply didn’t iron them before stepping out.
While this is true, chinos also get wrinkled when they’re too tight.
Of course, you can’t rely solely on this “wrinkle test” to tell you whether or not your chinos are too tight. You’d need to use other ways as well.
What to do: In cases like this, you can most probably make use of an iron to straighten out the wrinkled edges. Steam iron is more preferable as it works perfectly too.
#6. Folding Waistband
If you observe that the waistband of your chinos pants has begun to fold, it probably means that your chinos have become too tight for you.
You may notice that the waistband folds after you’ve been sitting for a while. While this may happen if you have a big belly, it can also be because the chinos are too tight.
What to do: You can make a v-cut at the back of the waistband and add another material. Taking out the darts is also another option.
#7. Zipper Slips Too Easily
A slipping zipper also shows that those chinos pants are too tight. It’s an issue when you can’t zip up easily or completely. This can cause your zipper to slip off easily.
If it gets so bad that the zipper breaks off, that’s the limit. Sometimes a folding waistband can also cause the zip to keep slipping easily.
What to do: Most times, to solve this, you may need to change the zipper. You can also adjust the dart or simply throw out those chinos.
Why You Should Stay Off Tight Chinos Pants
Many believe (wrongly, I might add) that tight pants look trendy and stylish. But, there is a thin line between a “classic-fit” and “too tight.” A pair of chinos that are too slim would choke the life (and style) off you.
Other possible effects of too tight chinos are:
- Studies show that tight chinos pants are harmful to fertility in men. Guys who wear too-tight pants are more likely to have lower sperm counts. This is because of the restriction in airflow around the thigh region. This can invariably affect the reproductive areas and result in infertility.
- Tight chinos also compress the testicles, pressing them up against the body or into pockets within the body. This can result in swollen, painful testicles. And there is evidence that suggests that this can result in an increased risk of testicular cancer.
- Tight chinos can also cause testicular torsion, also known as “twisted testicles.” You probably don’t know what that means, so we’re here to tell you.
Twisted testicles occur when the spermatic cord has its movement restricted. This is something that a tight pair of chinos could do. It could cause pain on its own, but it also gets worse.
Because the spermatic cord can no longer move freely, the testicles twist around it. And that is where the words “twisted testicles” come from. This twisting further restricts the flow of blood to your testicles, and this can be very uncomfortable as it is.
- Tight chinos can also cause urinary tract infections, especially when worn for a long time.
Now that you know the adverse side effects of wearing really tight chinos, it doesn’t mean that you should go for oversized ones. You can get the right size and slay in those chinos.
How To Wear Your Chinos Right
One of the easiest ways to wear your chinos right is by wearing them at the waist. Yup! While this might not be new to many, the “saggy waist” trendsetters might not agree with this one.
So, this is how we think you could wear yours. Wearing your chinos around the waist is also far more comfortable than wearing them at the hips.
Also, when you wear your chinos at the waist, the crotch of the pants is where it should be. This allows for greater movement and flexibility.
The ‘wear at the waist’ regulation is especially important for chubbier guys. Bigger men should wear their trousers around their waist and stomach. Paired with a well-fitted shirt, it is more appealing.
Also, your chinos will drape better if they are hung around the stomach rather than below the stomach.
Pairing Your Chinos
Chinos and A Blazer
For the perfect outdoor casual look, you can pair your chinos with a blazer. You have the luxury to go wild with your colors.
Navy blue, Ash, or Oxblood. Just anything cool for the mood would go. With the perfect blazers and watch, you don’t have to opt for tight chinos just to look trendy.
Chinos and a Bomber Jacket
If you want to go a little extra, then you should try a bomber jacket. Stay smooth and classy in one look. Paired with a nice pair of boots, you’ll be the center of attraction.
Chinos and a T-shirt
With the right combination of chinos pants and a T-shirt, you are ready to take on the world. The chinos and t-shirt combo is the most classic, as well as the simplest to achieve. You can also throw on a motorcycle jacket for a more “bad boy” look.
Choose any color of chinos and pair it with a black or white tee. For a much more defined look, you can also opt for a navy or striped tee.
Combine the look with white shoes, and voila! You’re ready for the summer.
Chinos and a Shirt
For a more formal look, you can pair chinos with a nice collared shirt. To tone up the look, you could throw on a tie. And maybe even a blazer.
With the right pair of shoes and a nice watch, you’ll be striding into the office with confidence.
Picking The Right Chinos Size
Because Chinos come in a wide range of designs, colors, and cuts, it can be tough to choose the right pair.
It can also be tempting to make a good guess when choosing your size. However, choosing the right size involves more than deciding whether you need a medium or large t-shirt.
To ensure you get the right fit, carefully measure the length of your legs and the width of your waist. You can then use those measurements when purchasing a pair of chinos.
When you get the right size for you, you can then pair it with any accessory or other clothing of your choice.
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