If you’re tall then you are already painfully aware that the world wasn’t made for someone your size. Whether you’re shopping for a new car, taking a shower at a hotel or just looking in most any mirror, you get daily reminders that once you pass six feet tall, things get a little uncomfortable. After all, why else do you think #tallpeopleproblems is a thing?
There is perhaps no worse tall problem than trying to find clothes that actually fit. Several years ago, brands started to carry “Big & Tall” or plus sizes. This was a step in the right direction but left out a lot of people. What about those of us who are tall but aren’t big? Where are the sizes for the slim and tall?
Most of us who are tall and lean enjoy very little in the form of fashion. We’re just thrilled when we find a shirt that actually fits. Our joy is usually short lived, however, as things come out of the dryer a size smaller than they went in.
Fortunately, apparel brands are starting to take notice of our plight. More and more options are sprouting up for our body type. Here are some tips on what’s out there and how you can rock a new look.
The staple in every closet, man or woman, is the basic tee. There’s a reason t-shirts are a $40 billion industry. Shopping for tees can be difficult because every manufacturer uses different sizing. But there are a few who make shirts especially for the lean and tall.
PRO TIP: wearing t-shirts with a deep v-neck will make your neck look longer which makes you look taller. Look for round, crew or scoop options…unless of course you are trying to look taller.
Men have a much easier time finding jeans and other pants. Sizing for men comes in a waist by inseam measurement. It might be hard to find 32×38 pants, but they are out there. Women, on the other hand, have a much harder time. Women’s pants follow standard sizing and it’s generally just a number. Finding pants with the additional length you need is difficult.
PRO TIP: try styles that rest on the hips instead of the waist. If your pants rest lower on your waist then the leg length will go lower.
Tall athletes who need clothing that fits, feels comfortable and moves with them are in luck. In the past these have been hard to find. But as it turns out, a lot of people who participate in sports tend to have similar athletic body types. And, generally speaking, they tend to be taller than average.
Because of this, most of the major brands offer their athletic products in tall sizes. LuLuLemon is one such brand. Athleta is another. Fortunately the current trend in fashion is a sort of melding together of active and casual wear, so you can find more options in athletic types of clothing than you would in casual or dress wear.
PRO TIP: most athletic clothing is made from some type of fabric blend that includes spandex. This is the same stretching fabric as Lycra or elastane. When looking at your options, go with clothing that says omni-directional movement or something similar. Lots of clothing will stretch in just one direction (horizontally or vertically). With athletic clothing you want it to stay comfortable while you are active and need it to stretch in all directions.
There are all kinds of apparel manufacturers trying to help out the lean and tall. Some specialize in very specific things that could help your wardrobe. Long Tie Store is, as the name suggests, a store for long ties. If you need some stylish gloves you can try Tall Fingers for some nice options.
Eddie Bauer sells talls in jackets that fit really well for tall women, especially in the arms.
You can also find very helpful information from a host of tall online bloggers. Websites like Height Of Style and Tall Life are filled with great information that can enhance your fashion and everyday life.
PRO TIP: if you go with patterns, keep in mind that vertical stripes will also give the impression that you are taller. Darker colors also tend to be more slimming, so if you don’t want to look as tall or as skinny, avoid the vertical stripes and darkest colors.
Being tall and slim doesn’t have to be difficult, at least not when it comes to fashion. People will still pester you with questions about your height or the weather, but at least you can look and feel good when they do.
For related reading for junior volleyball players, click here.
About The Author
Dan Deceuster is 6’6″ and founder of TallSlim Tees, a partner of the JVA. He lives in Saint George, Utah, with his wife and two children. He also participates in UOVA tournaments with 7’3″ partner David Foster, and together they hold the world record for the tallest 2-man volleyball team.