You know what size pants and shirt you wear, so getting a suit that fits should be easy, right? Not so fast. A quick glance at the racks of men's suits will soon reveal a whole new world of sizes like short, regular, long, extra long, executive cut. How's a guy supposed to know which is the right one? Here we'll give you some guidelines to get you on your way.
The starting point
In general, the size of men's suits is determined by two factors: the circumference of the chest, measured in inches, and the man's height (this is broken down into the basic categories short, regular, long, extra long, and the like). Unfortunately, knowing the other dimensions of the man's clothing, such as waist size, inseam, and sleeve and neck measurements, doesn't really help you when determining the correct size for a suit.
Using the waist size as a guide
Start with your pant waist size. As a rule of thumb, if a man is of an average build, then the jacket size is typically six inches larger in the chest than the waist size of his slacks. If you're athletic, guessing the proper suit size is extremely difficult. And if you're carrying a little more weight than you'd like, with a larger belly in proportion to a somewhat smaller chest, you should seek out "executive cut" suits, as these will feature a jacket only two to four inches larger than the slacks.
As far as height is concerned, again this is only an estimate, but as a rule, short suits are appropriate for men between 5'5" and 5'7" tall, regulars for 5'8" to around 6', longs for 6' to 6'3", and extra long for men between 6'3" and 6'5" (a marginally taller man may still wear an extra long, but anyone over 6'7" likely requires specialized clothes for taller men).
Consult an expert
And if you're still left scratching your head, don't worry. Every New York Man Suits Location (NYMSuits.com) is staffed with trained experts who are highly skilled at suit fitting. It may feel awkward to ask for help, but don't worry, that's what they're there for. A few quick measurements and they will be able to tell you your exact suit size as well as point you in the direction of the suits that will be best for your build. A suit is an investment that should last you for years; it pays to put the time into making sure that it fits you just right.