How to Measure Inseam for Jeans, Pants, Leggings – The Best Method

Christine Steuber
Sep 21, 2020
Measuring your inseam can change the way your jeans fit. You won’t even realize this but if your jeans don’t fit you well. There is a…

Measuring your inseam can change the way your jeans fit. You won’t even realize this but if your jeans don’t fit you well. There is a possibility that your inseam measurement is all wrong. The inseam length runs from the crotch to the end of the jeans (the leg opening).

If you get yourself sized at a tailor’s, this is how she’ll do it. She’ll run the measuring tape along your legs right down to the opening. Starting from the below your crotch right down the ankle where the jeans end.

How to Measure Inseam


But how to measure inseam yourself? There are two ways of going about it. And here’s a detailed guide on both of them.

1. Measuring Inseam on the Table

You can lay the jeans out on the table to measure the inseam. It’s simple and quick. But you will need a pair of well-fitting pants to get you started. It’s best to go with the jeans that already fit you well.

Lay it out on a table in front of you. For a more accurate measurement, make sure you buy the exact style of the pants you’re measuring the inseam of.

For jeans, measure a pair of well-fitting jeans. And for pants, measure a pair of comfortable pants.

Sometimes brands print out the inseam measurement right on the tag. If your jeans do not have the inseam measurement, follow the next steps carefully.

Place the jeans on the table and fold them. Fold them so that the legs of the jeans lined are on top of each other. Now lift the top leg up and over the waistband. So it will reveal the crotch, which marks the starting point of the jeans’ inseam.

Do not wrinkle or fold the jeans any more than is necessary. Make sure the jeans are flat on the table. Now take a measuring tape and place the starting tip below the crotch. This is where the crotch seam is. The last point from where both legs go their separate ways.

Run the measuring tape all the way down along the sides to the end. Do not stop halfway or even an inch above the ending. You’re supposed to join the crotch inseam to the ankle inseam of the jeans leg.

Take that number down in centimeters or inches or both. And refer to every time you go for jeans shopping.


If you plan on wearing high heels, it’s best to increase the inseam measurement by .5-1 inch. You can also measure the heels. And add that to your inseam measurement for an accurate length.

Or if the jeans material is prone to shrinking in size after a few washes. Make sure you round up the inseam measurement to the closest .5 inches. So that even if the jeans do shrink, you won’t lose your length.

Most jeans shrink after wash. Adding half an inch is the best way to avoid tightness.

2. Measuring Inseam in Front of a Mirror

If it’s not simple enough to measure inseam the first way. You can always have someone measure your inseam while you’re wearing the jeans/pants. Like I’ve already said, wear the best fitting jeans you have in your closest.

Do not wear heels or shoes. Stand barefoot against a wall to ensure you’re not slouching. Have someone place the start tip of the measuring tape below your crotch. That’s the crotch inseam. And then follow it along the side of the pant leg right to the end. That’s where the ankle inseam is.

If you want the length to be a bit longer, you can take it to the ground or lower than the ankles.

Lots of people measure inseam in front of the mirror. While this may be tricky to do so, you can do it yourself. The best clothing item to wear while measuring is a tight-fitting legging. Even workout leggings work if it fits you well.

Make sure you unroll the tape slowly as you move toward your ankles. Stop as soon as the measuring tape reaches your ankles. And take down the number that you can see. If you wish to round up the number, stick to the closest .5 inches for a more accurate fit.

Types of Jeans


To measure the perfect pair of jeans, you have to keep these terms in mind. How to measure inseam, hips, and waist. This can transform the way you wear your everyday denim.

Different types of jeans have different inseam measurements. Here are some basic ones you need to know about.

Skinny Jeans

Skinny jeans have an average inseam measurement of 28 to 36 inches. This works for most body types. And it’s a skinny fit with a tight and narrow length.

Boyfriend jeans

Boyfriend jeans are shorter than skinny jeans. Their length is about 27 to 29 inches. This is because Boyfriend jeans have plenty of room around the hips. So the cropped length adds volume and looks baggy rather than skinny and narrow.

Straight-Leg Jeans

Straight leg jeans and skinny jeans are quite similar. However, straight leg jeans are more open at the bottom than skinny jeans. The inseams on both sides of the leg run parallel to each other. While in skinny jeans, they slightly narrow toward each other. Creating a prolonged and slim look.

So straight leg jeans have the longest inseam of up to 36 inches.


As you can see, the inseam affects the style of the jeans you want to wear. While it also depends on your body type and jeans measurement. It’s best to know the standard inseam and how to measure inseam before proceeding.

It’s important to know which jean style suits your body type and size. Not every pair of jeans fit the same way. Some may be too tight while others may be too baggy. Inseam plays a significant role in how jeans fit you.

You can measure your jeans’ inseam without anybody’s help. And buy yourself some comfortable and stylish pair of jeans without a fuss.

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