In order to look good in the clothes and outfits that you like best, it’s crucial that you have the right size and fit of those apparel items. This may seem obvious; however, one only needs to take a walk through a large and crowded shopping mall to find examples of people wearing clothing unsuitable for their individual size and fit. 

You may be wearing the most expensive, premium cotton, clean-stitched hand-made dress shirt. However, unless the fit is proper and true to size, you could be doing yourself a major fashion disservice and/or committing a major fashion faux pas. Everyone’s body is different. What works for someone who’s six feet tall and weighing 200 pounds may not be appropriate for someone just an inch or two taller and as little as just a few pounds leaner or heavier. You should at least know by now, in general, what your basic shirt size is. Let’s begin there.

daniel sheehan chest measurement

Your too of choice in determining your true size and fit is possessing an appropriate body measuring tape. These are usually made of plastic and are easy to wrap around a person’s body. If you’ve ever been fitted by a tailor, you should have an idea of this type of measuring tape.

The measuring tape that you used to build that birdhouse last month is not the one being described here. If you do find yourself in a pinch, these types of measuring tapes can suffice.


There’s a wrong way and a right way to measure your chest. The wrong way consists of measuring yourself. Wrapping the measuring tape around your own chest is a surefire way to ensure that the size and fit you’ve just measured is skewed and incorrect. 

The right way to do this is to embrace the buddy system. If you don’t have a buddy, at least find someone you can tolerate being around for a few minutes. Ideally, this person should feel at least the same about you.

With your arms held up, your “buddy” should wrap the measuring tape around your upper body, approximately an inch below where the crease of your arm is. The tape should wrap securely around your body, covering your upper back. In front, the tape should wrap around approximately where your nipples are. Once the tape has been firmly wrapped around your entire body, you can lower your arms. This creates the circumference around your body and will give you an accurate chest size. The number that you have is your chest measurement.

A final piece of advice. If you’re a bit heavier than you’d like to be or self-conscious about your size, don’t wear your tops, or shirts, too big. Wearing clothes larger than your true size can cause attire to drape off you and make you look a little bit bigger.

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