How to Find New Shorts that Fit Like Your Favorite Pair

Admit it. You have a favorite pair of shorts. You know the one. The first one you wear out of the dryer. The pair you would wear every day if it weren’t so obvious.

Eventually, it will come time to replace those shorts. Problem is, nothing you ever buy seems to compare to the perfect fit of the original. But if you know what you’re doing, you can buy a perfectly-fitting pair of shorts that will become your new favorite pair—and you can do it all online. Here’s how.

Why Not Just Read the Label?

Finding the right fitting shorts isn’t as easy as reading the label because of a little thing called “vanity sizing.” Simply put, one company’s version of “small,” when measured in actual inches, is going to be different from another company’s version of “small.”

If you’ve ever noticed that your shirts and shorts tend to fit differently across a variety of brands, despite getting the “right” size, then you know exactly what we mean.

That’s why reading the label can sometimes lead you astray when it comes to identifying the precise size of your favorite pair of shorts. Maybe you need to size up with a different brand. Or maybe you need to size down. Either way, if you want to buy a new pair of shorts that’s just as comfortable as the original, you need to know the actual size. It’s simple. And you can do it at home, with just a few everyday items.

What You’ll Need:

  • A tape measure. A ruler simply won’t work here, because we’re going to measure your old shorts as they actually fit.

  • A pen and a pad. It sounds like homework, but trust us, you’ll want to keep these numbers for reference when you’re shopping around.

Learn How Shorts are Sized

You might know a thing or two about how shirts are sized—what the neck length means, or roughly how a large might fit—but when it comes to shorts, there’s an entirely different set of sizing rules. Most often, the size of the shorts specifically refers to the waistband. At Vintage 1946, each shorts size tends to refer to a specific waistband length, as follows:

  • XS: 26-28
  • S: 29-31
  • M: 32-34
  • L: 35-37
  • XL: 38-40
  • XXL: 41-43

Use the tape measure to measure the waistband of your favorite shorts. Match the result with the corresponding size on this chart. Now you have a great frame of reference to work from when searching through our collections.

Don’t Forget the Length

Now that you have an idea of what size to purchase here at Vintage 1946, there’s one more variable to keep in mind: the length. Use the same tape measure to discover and write down the length of your shorts from the top of the waistband to the bottom of the hem.

Here, we have a few options you can choose from:

It doesn’t take very long to discover exactly what it is about those old shorts you love so much. Simply take the time to discover their size, translate them to a new brand, and buy the shorts that you think look the best.