How to wear tight pants

T he right clothes can help you feel empowered and confident. Unfortunately, a common misconception is that wearing clothes one size too small can make your figure look slimmer and shapelier.

While form-fitting dresses and skinny jeans may look great on you, they may not be doing your body any favors. In fact, excessively tight clothes can cause a slew of potential health problems. So whether you’re looking to buy tights or other pieces of clothing, you’ll want to make sure you get them in the right sizes.

But just how can tight-fitting clothes harm your body, anyway? Read on to learn how they may make you feel sick or uncomfortable, as well as how you can pick better-fitting clothes each time you go shopping:

Acid Reflux

Acid reflux is one of the most common conditions caused by wearing tight clothing. More commonly known as heartburn, acid reflux occurs when stomach acid seeps up the lower esophageal junction, causing damage over time. This damage to your digestive tract can lead to aches and pains, all of which can make everyday activities such as eating, drinking, and even sleeping extremely uncomfortable.

What do your clothes have to do with this? Tight clothing that puts a lot of pressure on your abdomen (such as skinny jeans) can push stomach acid up your esophagus, triggering heartburn. Even people who are not usually prone to acid reflux can suffer from it after only two weeks of wearing tight pants or compression garments.

While you may not think this is a serious condition at first, it’s best to see a health professional so as to address the issue before it can worsen.

Poor Blood Circulation

In addition to your digestive tract, tight clothing can also negatively affect your circulatory system. Whenever your limbs are constricted by ill-fitting clothes, your veins struggle to pump blood throughout your body. As a result, your limb tissues fail to receive enough nutrients. This, in turn, can cause pain, swelling, and even nerve damage over time.

As with acid reflux, these are symptoms that should be taken seriously. If you’re experiencing them, it’s highly recommended to consult a medical professional for help.

Skin Irritation

Tight clothing is also a bad idea for people with sensitive skin, as having the fabric constantly rub against your body can cause lesions and rashes. What’s more, tight clothing can irritate existing wounds or rashes, preventing them from fully healing. To make matters worse, tight clothing can also trap excessive heat and moisture, becoming the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. This can lead to bacterial infections and further complications down the line.

How to Check If Your Clothes Still Fit You Properly

With all of the potential health conditions that tight clothing can cause, the importance of buying pieces that fit you perfectly cannot be understated. That said, you don’t have to throw out your entire wardrobe just yet. Figuring out which of the pieces you currently own actually fits you is a step in the right direction. Take some time to sort through your wardrobe and check each item carefully. Here are a few tips that can help:

Check If Your Tops Fit You Perfectly

Start by checking if the seams of the top’s shoulders are aligned with the edge of your own shoulders, right where your shoulders bend. A top’s hem should end around the mid-rift and the neckline should sufficiently cover your bust. This is especially important for oversized tops.

Check If Your Bottoms Fit You Perfectly

It’s all too easy to pick jeans that don’t fit quite right. When checking if any of your bottoms still fit, make sure they fit comfortably against your waist instead of hugging at your hips. Also, check if you can stick at least two fingers into the jean’s waistband. If so, it’s just the right size.

How to Avoid Buying Excessively Tight Clothes

Now that you’ve determined which clothes still fit you properly, you’ll want to replace the ill-fitting ones with better options. To ensure that you don’t mistakenly buy excessively tight pieces again, keep the following tips in mind:

Measure Yourself Correctly

When it comes to buying new pieces for your wardrobe, start by learning how to take your measurements accurately. For starters, it’s best to measure yourself while wearing only your undergarments. This is because wearing clothes might add some unnecessary bulk to your final measurements. If you don’t know how to measure yourself properly, look up online tools and videos that can guide you through the process.

Do Your Research

Most retailers publicly post size charts that provide accurate measurements of the items that they carry. Just to be safe, you should look these charts up so that you can compare them against your own measurements. Reading customer reviews is another great way to gauge the actual size of any garment. Just be sure to check what size they bought and what their concerns were, as no two people will ever have the exact same measurements.

Suffering for fashion is now a thing of the past. Fashion standards have changed over time, and women now know that looking good doesn’t have to come at a price. That said, celebrate your body by wearing items that fit you perfectly. With these tips and tricks, you can be on your way to having the perfect look that makes you look and feel great.

Anyone who has read our style section knows we’re big fans of wearing slim clothes. After all, there’s no sense looking bigger than you are, and a careful taper here and there can take a few kegs off your frame (even if you don’t deserve it).

But what about ‘tight clothes’… It’s easy to take it too far.

Maybe it’s a shirt that looks sprayed on and leaves nothing to the imagination. Maybe you’ve gone through three pairs of suit pants in as many months and wonder if the Friday knockoffs are beginning to show.

We want our readers to look sharp, not terrified of the prospect of splitting their pants in front of the CEO. The following read will help you avoid this fate by pointing out the signs that your clothes are too skinny and how to dress accordingly.

Your Kit Doesn’t Last

How to wear tight pantsIt’s okay, these are spray on pants

Can’t seem to find trousers that don’t cark it before three months? If you’re wearing through clothes too quickly, it might not be the quality of the garment. In fact, it might just be you.

Prolonged garment friction against your body can cause premature tears, splits, and pilling. If your clothes are too tight, this puts stress on the fabric and seams and before you know it, you’re showing your knickers off to the guys at the office.

While we’re not suggesting that you’ll never buy faulty clothes – it happens – these ongoing durability issues could simply relate to the fact that your kit is too skinny and it’s not agreeing with you.

You Get Scared Picking Up Loose Change

How to wear tight pantsInto the danger zone

Do you have a moment of panic when you drop something and realise you might not make it back up? Do you avoid taking the stairs because your suit trousers might not survive the journey? It’s normal to sacrifice a little bit of comfort to look slim, but come on, fellas. There’s a line.

Slim or not, clothes should give you a decent range of motion. You shouldn’t feel like picking up your wallet is going to leave you with a ripped crotch.

Suffocating in your clothes is not cool, and it’s not practical. If this sounds like your sartorial experience, it’s time to see a tailor. Or better yet, swallow your damn pride and start buying a larger size.

Button & Pocket Trouble

How to wear tight pantsAlvin loves a good heavage

When it comes to finding the right fit, there are a few red flags a switched-on clothes horse will notice in the changeroom. Shirt buttons should be vertical. They shouldn’t pull or gape to the sides in a manner that exposes the dodgy tats that you got at nineteen.

When you’re doing up the collar, it should feel firm, but not so tight that you’re pulling at your neck all day or loosening your tie. As for your pants, the pockets should be flat. If they flare out, it means the trousers are too firm on your thighs, and might split on your way up the stairs.

Your Mates Let You Know

How to wear tight pantsSon, you’re in too deep

Mates will rag on mates for almost anything. But if you feel like your boys are giving you a hard time just for your tight clothes and not the other terrible qualities you have, it might be time to listen.

It’s not unlike the times when you cop some unsolicited feedback on a flash new haircut, get told to brush your teeth, or to leave some of the suspect local talent alone. No one wants to see their mates suffer if they can help it (unless they’re not really your mates).

If your band of brothers keep reminding you that your pants are tighter than your girlfriend’s, it’s not because they’re dickheads (well, it might be). A simpler explanation is merely that yes, your clothes are too tight and yes, you deserve to know about it.

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How to wear tight pants

Tight pants are having a moment. Unfortunately they often take more than a moment to get them on!

Say what you will about flares or wide-leg pants making a comeback but skinny jeans, crops, leggings and everything in between are still filling store shelves. We’re going on more than a decade of this slim-legged trend. And honestly I’m not mad about it. Fashion’s greatest gift for girls with athletic thighs like mine are jeggings! (True story: I have “hulked” through no less than three pairs of denim with my killer quads.) Plus they tuck so much better into riding boots. But sometimes this fashion trend comes with a (hilarious) price.

How to wear tight pants

1. Doing the tight pants dance

Getting them on requires some special skills. Who hasn’t done their own version of wiggling, lunging, squatting, kicking and yanking to get on a pair that’s more denim than stretch? I call my personal move the Upside-Down Squid Being Electrocuted. Try it, you’ll love it!

2. Boys steal your pants

I once faced down an emo teen boy at a thrift store over the perfect pair of black, destroyed women’s skinnies. I won but only because he was temporarily disoriented by the bangs covering his eyes. Although my victory was tinged with sadness when I got home and had to confess they probably would have looked better on his skinny-thighed no-hips frame than my more womanly one. And I’m not the only girl to complain about a dude taking her pants. What does it say about us when women’s jeans look better on some men?

3. You get panty lines

Denim used to be the one fabric you never had to worry about panty lines with. Sadly those halcyon days of blissful granny panties are gone thanks to ultra-tight pants making sure your Victoria’s Secrets aren’t a secret. Now it’s a thong or commando.

4. Getting tight pants on your kids is the worst

Skinny jeans are one trend that doesn’t translate well to small children. Not only is it painful to wrestle their little spaghetti limbs into what are essentially Barbie clothes but they hate wearing anything that restricts their movement, even in the name of fashion. I don’t even know why they make toddler-sized skinny jeans. OK, yes I do: They’re adorable…if you can get your kid to wear them. (Exception to the rule: Cotton leggings, which my daughter lives in.)

5. Clown feet

If flares and bellbottoms do one thing really well, it’s make your feet look tiny. Not that I’m ashamed of my foot size or anything but when the ankle of your pants is super tight it does sometimes make your feet look giant. But worse than looks are when the ankles are so tight you need a shoe horn just to get your feet through the bottom of the pants! And heaven help you when it’s time to take them off again. There was a reason that skinnies in the ’80s had ankle zips, just saying.

6. Speaking of taking them off

If you thought the tight pants dance is entertaining to get them on then you’ll love the aerobic workout you’ll get taking them off again! I once had to have a friend come in the dressing room and yank the pants over my feet while I laid on my back. I bought the jeans anyhow. What? They make my butt look amazing! Besides, what are best friends for if not to save you from having to run into public half-naked?

7. Sheer… embarrassment

As a girl who lives in her gym leggings, I can tell you I’ve had to learn by experience to do the “squat test” in front of the mirror before buying. When your pants are tight, they have to stretch when you bend — not a problem when the material is thick. But the stretchier the pants, the thinner the material, it seems. So instead of plumber’s crack, now you have peek-a-boo yoga crack. (Why is “yoga crack” not a thing yet?!)

So while we wait for the fashion trends to swing in a looser direction, the struggle is real.

Tight jeans lost their reign to baggy jeans in the 1990s but emerged as a fierce fashion choice in the 2000s.

So much so that even Katy Perry couldn’t help but mention them in her 2010 mega-hit, Teenage Dream. Her promise to “… get your heart racing in my skin-tight jeans” perhaps influenced even more girls and women to rock figure-hugging jeans.

Their dominance spanned the last two decades and seems to be continuing, even though looser fits such as mom jeans are regaining some traction.

Women can’t get enough of close-fitting jeans that come in the form of skinny jeans, girlfriend jeans, and slim-fit jeans. You’ve seen them in various washes and colors too.

Fashion mavens continue to hail tight jeans as staples because almost every woman has a pair or more in her closet.

Why do most women love to wear tight jeans? We’ll explore the answers below.

Table of Contents

Do You Wonder Why Girls Love Skinny Jeans So Much?

How to wear tight pants

Have you ever noticed that skinny jeans are a year-round favorite, no matter the season? You’ll run into a few girls in tight jeans at the mall or park, even if it’s 95 °F.

Or you may be puzzled as to why a woman or girl wears the same tight jeans everywhere. She dresses them up with heels when dining out, sports them in converse sneakers when hanging out with friends and rocks them in ballet flats for casual Fridays at the office.

Well, girls in skin-tight jeans are not a new obsession. Our seniors may give credit to Hollywood icons Marilyn Monroe and Sandra Dee who blazed the trail in fashion back in the 1950s and 1960s.

Tight jeans, which are fondly known as drainpipes, stovepipes, cigarette pants, pencil pants, and skinnies, are perhaps the most constant garment since they make an appearance in every decade.

You may have also spotted girls in skin-tight jeans that almost give you the impression that the jeans are a second skin.

Don’t be fooled – some girls are wearing tight jeggings – the non-denim version of jeans made from stretchy materials made to look exactly like jeans.

That’s just how far girls and women will go for skin-tight jeans. Their admiration (and downright obsession) for tight jeans is the reason for the garment’s long-staying power.

Why Do Girls Wear Tight Pants?

When you see a girl wearing tight jeans you may ask, “was it a calculated decision? Or did she give it little to no thought?”

We would say it’s both. Let’s explore the reasons below to explain further.

  1. To accentuate their figures

Tight jeans, especially those of top quality, do a good job of outlining the shape of the female form.

They hug the curves and present an overall feminine appearance. They can even give the illusion of an hourglass or pear shape.

  1. To attract guys

Girls and women love to get validation from guys. They know that they can attract guys and be the center of attention.

Plus, the flattery gives girls a major boost to their self-esteem.

  1. To hide “imperfections”

Some of the girls in skin-tight jeans wear them because they want to cover scars, stretch marks and other imperfections.

Tight jeans allow them to be sexy while helping them to feel confident.

  1. To be in the “in crowd”

Lots of women and girls have FOMO. Their friends are wearing tight jeans, therefore they want to fit in as well.

  1. To appear slimmer

Just like black clothes, tight jeans have been known to have a slenderizing effect.

Many girls aim to look like their favorite celebrity or influencer, so they’ll wear tight jeans to achieve this.

  1. To wear something comfortable

Some tight jeans are comfortable to wear. They’re soft and stretchy, making them perfect as go-to pants.

  1. To highlight the legs

Tight jeans present an opportunity for girls to show off the shape of their legs. They add a little height to shorter girls.

Tall girls will appear as though they have legs for days.

  1. To be trendy

Tight jeans seem to always be in style. It’s common for teens and fashion-forward folks to want to keep up to date with the latest fashion.

  1. To enhance an outfit

Let’s face it – tight jeans just look better with some outfits. It’s easier to dress them up with heels, or a blazer or to wear in boots.

  1. To express themselves

Some girls and women wear tight jeans as a form of self-expression. For them, tight jeans send the message that says, “I’m sexy, confident and comfortable with myself.”

Advantages and Disadvantages of Wearing Tight Jeans

As in the case of most things, there are pros and cons. Tight jeans are no different. See for yourself:

Here at GQ, we couldn't be happier that slim pants have become more common than ever before. Gone are the days of bootcut jeans and pleated khakis, and we're all for it. The idea of the "skinny jean" certainly crested years ago. Maybe it's the popularity of Hedi Slimane's "rocker chic" pencil-thin aesthetic, but there are still men out there are reaching for pants that are far too narrow for their man-sized legs and waistlines. The latest offender? Our dear friend Drake, who performed at Governor's Ball in New York City in ball-bustingly tight jeans. If you'd like to avoid the 6 god's legging-like situation, here's six tips for knowing that you've crossed over from slim to skin tight.

The Sit Test

Take a seat. Go on, sit down. Okay, now look down at your legs, and grab some fabric from the thigh portion of your jeans. Even just a little pinch will do. Can't do it? Your pants are too damn tight. Next time you're out shopping, sit down on the bench in the fitting room and test this out. Yes, even if you're buying raw denim.

Can People Tell What Kind of Cell Phone You Have?

Is that a Galaxy 6S or are you just happy to see me? If other people know whether you've got a Samsung or iPhone just by looking at your pants, you know you've gone too slim. Similarly, you should just be able to fit your entire hand into your front pocket to access your phone next time you get a text. If you find yourself fishing it out with tweezers, you're going to need something roomier.

**Time Your Next Blow-Out **

We know crotch blowouts happen, especially if you're the kind of guy that likes to wear the same pair of jeans every day. But as a general rule of bum, you shouldn't be ripping them in less than 3 months after purchasing. Rip once, shame on the manufacturing practices, rip twice, shame on you for not knowing what size pants to wear.

Next time you have to choose between an escalator or stairs, take the old school route. Not only is it healthy, but it'll be the perfect place to test your tightness. Now get those knees high. Now double time. If your range of motion has been limited to anything under a 90 degree angle between your thigh and lower leg, it's time to size up.

Take It All Off

Sometimes the best time to test pant tightness is when taking them off. If they're constantly getting caught around your knees, which in turn sends you into a one-footed jumping dance routine as you flail around trying to peel them off your calves, then you know there's a problem.

The Buddy System

The best thing about best friends is that they can be brutally honest. So if you're homie's been telling you, "Dude, your pants look like sausage casings" for the past three months, then maybe, just maybe, he's onto something.