A Tall Man’s Guide to Looking Good

A Tall Man’s Guide to Looking Good

When it comes to clothing, “one size fits all” rarely does. Nor does every person fits into so-called regular-size garments, which is why manufacturers produce clothes for a range of heights and body types. Women, for example, can choose from plus, petite, petite plus, tall, or tall plus sizes in addition to regular. Men too, have similar options, although the ranges may be named differently; besides regular, men’s clothes come in big, short, tall, big and short, or big and tall.

Big and tall men’s clothes cater to men who range from approximately 6'3'' to 6'7'' in height (above that, and you’re into extra tall sizes) and are also wider in girth. Tall men’s clothing is similar to regular clothes in terms of girth but is also geared to men in the 6'3'' to 6'7'' range. It can be confusing to figure out how to dress if you’re a tall man. You may be proud of your height, but that doesn’t mean you want to look like a lamp post. Read on for some suggestions on how to look good if you’re a tall man.

Wear Clothes Fitted to Your Height

Proportion is key when it comes to looking good, which is why choosing clothing in tall sizes is so important. For example, while a regular button-down shirt may fit you in the torso, odds are the sleeves will be too short. And, let’s face it, having cuffs stop 3 inches above your wrist is not a stylish look. In addition, tall men’s T-shirts, Henleys, dress shirts, and the like all have extra length in the body so they can be properly tucked in without you having to worry about exposing your midriff.

The same holds true for outwear. Avoid jackets that stop at your waist. At a minimum, your jacket should reach at least to your hips, but a little longer—say, to your inseam—will be even more flattering.

Dress in Layers

Adding bulk or texture is one way to complement your height, and you can do this in several ways. Wear a sweater over a polo shirt or button-down. Nubby prints will add texture and interest and help you avoid looking like a long rectangle. Men’s tall blazers and suit jackets can also be flattering. The padding in the shoulders adds width, and the length will make your torso seem longer. Remember to pass on the pinstripes, especially when it comes to suits, to avoid looking like a stick figure; plaids and windowpane checks will be far more becoming.

Skip the Vertical Stripes

Short people are often told to wear clothes patterned with vertical stripes because they make the wearer look taller. As an already-tall man, though, that’s the last thing you want to do. Instead, choose tops with horizontal stripes or color blocking, such as rugby polos. And stripes aren't the only pattern you want to watch out for. While there’s nothing wrong with wearing button-down casual shirts in fun prints, It’s best to avoid large, overly bright patterns, which tend to draw the eye upward.

Avoid a Monochromatic Look

People who are on the heavier side will often wear tops and bottoms that are the same color, which has a slimming effect and also makes the wearer seem taller. As a tall man, however, you’re better off dressing in a more varied color palette. So, swap out the black sweater you planned on wearing with black pants for one in a different color, such as heather gray or red, to break things up. Another way to do this is with a men’s belt, especially if you’re wearing a tucked-in shirt. Beside simply looking neater, the belt breaks up the vertical line of your body.

Choose Loose-Fitting Pants

If wearing close-fitting pants makes you think your legs look like pencils when you look in a mirror, you’re not alone. Tall men’s pants are generally cut more loosely for just that reason, although not to the point that their baggy. Whether you’re wearing jeans or dress slacks, the wider fit will make your girth seem more proportionate to your height.

Make Use of Accessories

Belts aren’t the only accessories that, when used appropriately, can help tall men look good. Shoes also have a role to play. Choosing footwear that pops, such as a saddle shoe or two-tone wingtip, or even a white sneaker, will draw the eye downward. For even more impact, add a pair of funky patterned socks. Men’s ties can also help lengthen your torso—but be sure you choose the right size so it hangs just at the top of your belt buckle. Standard tie length is 5'7'', whereas ties for tall or for big and tall men are 6'3''. Given that no one sees the back part of a tie, you can use a regular one and just adjust the way you tie it.

One final tip: Your tailor is your friend. Even clothes designed for tall men sometimes need alterations to fit properly. Looking good when you’re a tall man isn’t always easy. Choosing clothes with your height in mind and following the suggestions above will help you to be your best stylish self.


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