Tailored Fit vs Tapered Fit - What’s The Difference?

Tailored Fit vs Tapered Fit - What’s The Difference?

Knowing how to dress yourself is not just about styling your outfits. It is also, and most importantly, what fits your body the best.

Get the fit of your clothes right and the rest will all fall into place. Especially with fitted shirts. Get the fit wrong and it is likely you will feel uncomfortable and unconfident in what you are wearing.

While choosing the cut of your clothes is based partially on fashion trends, it is always better to choose clothes that flatter your body over solely what is in fashion. That’s why it really does help to get clued up about the different types of fits.

After-all, a man who is knowledgeable about what suits him is likely to find choosing the right clothes a breeze.

But with so many different types of fits and cuts out there, which ones should you be investing in for your body shape? More specifically when it comes to tailored fit vs tapered fit. What is actually the difference between the two and how can you get the best out of them for your body shape? 

If you are shopping for a new pair of jeans for example, you might become inundated with tailored fit this, tapered fit that. So knowing the differences can save you time and money in the long run.

The main difference between the two is that a tailored fit is cut close to the body. Tailored fitting clothes are tighter than a regular or slim fit but not as skin tight as a skinny cut.

tailored fit vs tapered fit

They also have less material as a whole, which helps to avoid that oversized look that you often get from looser fits.

The tapered fit in comparison, is a close relation of the tailored fit and is cut close to the body too but unlike its counterpart is cut wider at one end and becomes gradually smaller towards the other. 

Looking for shirts that fit perfectly to your body? Check out our collection of fitted shirts here.

Tailored and tapered fits apply to all types of clothing items too: T-shirts, shirts, polo shirts, henley shirts, jackets etc. While tailored fits have been popular for quite some time, tapered cuts are making waves in menswear today.

Some reasons for the popularity of the tapered cut include that it reduces the amount of fabric used, gives the wearer a more form-fitting look and works well for men with athletic/ muscular body shapes.

Not only that, it is equally the closest thing to having your clothes professionally tailored. Tapered shirts and T-shirts for instance have a wider upper half that then gradually narrows in at the waist- almost as if they have had the bespoke treatment.

While tailoring encompasses much more, tapering is still a form of it and one that is now available to the masses, whether the clothing is casual or smart .

At Tapered Menswear we are proud to say that we’ve mastered the tapered fit for men with athletic builds who want more out of their clothes. More style. More comfort.

comparing tapered fit and tailored fit

Long Sleeve Green Tapered Fit Polo and White Tapered Fit Henley

And a truly confident fit. T-shirts, shirts, henleys and polos are cut in a v-tapered shape to compliment the natural curves and contours of the body. Here for you for all of the times that tailored fits just don’t make the cut.

So what’s it going to be tailored or tapered? Read our handy guide to find out the differences between the two and which one would work best for your body shape.

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What is a Tailored Fit?

When we think of the word ‘tailored’, a person with a measuring tape, sewing a three-pieced suit usually comes to mind.

In the most traditional sense, this is tailoring. Back in the day, a visit to the tailor was the best (or only) way to get a bespoke suit that fit exceptionally well.

The tailored fit today in contrast, isn’t just reserved for Savile Row. In fact, the tailored fit is a fit like any other - slim, loose, regular, skinny. And unlike getting a bespoke suit made for you and only you, the tailored fit is available on the market.

It also won’t cost you the Earth. It will however, give you more shape and structure to your clothes. Almost as if you have had them purposefully made for you.

With the tailored fit, there is overall, less fabric than that of a regular cut. There are also features such as darts and tapering which are added in to work with the curves and contours of the body.

And while there tapering for that added shape, the tailored fit is not as tight as a tapered.

On the other hand it is more fitted than a regular and also gets rid of that ‘boxy’ look that the slim fit is known for.

Tailoring is therefore ideal for men with more athletic frames and shapes who otherwise find that straight shapes hide their body and make them look disproportionate. 

What is the Difference Between Tailored and Regular Fit Suit?

A tailored fit suit is a semi-fitted style, offering a modern silhouette that accentuates the body shape without being too tight. It provides a comfortable fit with tapered waist, narrower shoulders, and slightly slimmed sleeves.

On the other hand, a regular fit suit has a more traditional cut, with a relaxed, looser fit throughout the garment, including broader shoulders and a straight waistline.

The main difference lies in the degree of closeness to the body and the overall aesthetic.

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While we’re banishing myths about tailored fits. Tailored fits aren’t just reserved for formal wear either. You can now buy just about any piece of clothing in a tailored cut, even your casual items!

Learning how each piece of tailored clothing looks however, can save you time and energy when shopping around. It can likewise help you to make the best decision on whether a tailored cut is right for you and your body shape. 

Tailored Fit Jeans/Trousers

Tailored fit jeans and/or trousers share the similar attributes to both the regular and slim fit, with a few key differences. The main one being that a tailored cut has less fabric than a regular fit and ends slightly higher on the ankle.

A tailored fitting pair of trousers or jeans also offers more room for movement than a slim fit, in that they don’t cling too much to the body.

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They do however have more shape than a slim fit, which make them a good option for anyone who wants to avoid that straight, shapeless look.

A tailored fitting pair of jeans or trousers will balance the proportions of your legs if you have a more muscular physique.

At the same time, a tailored cut will move with the curves of your legs, without hugging them too tightly, so that you get a more relaxed look than a slim fitting pair but still with that illusion of shape.


Tailored Fit T-Shirts

Tailored T-shirts, much like trousers, also have that added shape within the cut of the fabric to lose that over-sized look that will hide your body. This can look like tapering into a c-shape at the waist and a narrower shoulder and chest area.

Some tailored t-shirts have narrower arm holes and a shorter length than a regular fit. The effect of this is a more body-forming style.

If you are after a sleek looking T-shirt that you can easily go about your day in and still get the best out of your shape, a tailored cut is a good choice.

tailored t-shirts by tapered menswear

Navy Tapered Fit T-Shirt

Again, men with more muscular or athletic builds, find that tailored fit t-shirts are a good alternative from the many oversized regular off-the-rack styles or even the boxy style that they get from a slim fitting T-shirt. 


Tailored Fit Dress Shirts

Dress shirts have been tailored for decades and yet, many men believe that they have to have their dress shirts made specifically bespoke to get the best out of them. This couldn’t be further from the truth.

Tailored fit dress shirts exist on the market and work particularly well for muscular men who get frustrated with regular and slim fits.

With a regular fit, there is often an abundance of material that when tucked into the waist band of the trousers, causes an unflattering bubble shape.

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While slim fits are better and we're made to solve this problem, they didn’t suit men who were more top heavy and caused a similar sort of problem.

Wearing a tailored fit with some tapering at the waist as well as darts at the back, allows for a reduction in the material, and keeps the shape of the shirt (whether tucked in or not) much more streamlined. 


Tailored Fit Polos

Polo shirts likewise come in tailored cuts and much like T-shirts operate in the same way. This means that they are cut with less fabric to stop that material pooling at the waist.

While they do often have some tapering in the midsection, they still have room for movement- ideal if you wear your polo for day-to-day activities.

Similarly to other types of tailored cut shirts, they also streamline the shape of the wearer, especially if he happens to have a broader chest and shoulders.

tailored fit polo shirt in white by tapered menswear

White Tapered Fit Polo

Whereas, regular or loose fits would make a bodybuilder or a muscular man look shapeless, a tailored fit polo concentrates on keeping the most important elements of the polo and giving the wearer shape where he needs it the most.

This also means that the sleeves and chest area are more likely to be fitted to prevent any sloping around the shoulders.

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Tailored Fit Henleys

Much like polo shirts, the classic henley has also had the tailored fit makeover. Back in the 80s and 90s, henley shirts were often loose fitting, which wasn’t a very flattering vibe for most men.

While slim fits became the norm in recent years, this didn’t solve the problem for everyone and still caused that straight, shapeless look for men with more curves and contours to the body.

A tailored fit in comparison, is fitted at the shoulders, chest and arms for a more form hugging look.

It is then cut with less fabric at the torso to again, give the guy who wears it a more ‘in proportion’ look and not dominate his body with fabric that really doesn’t need to be there.

What is The Difference Between Tapered and Tailored?

While the tapered fit evolved from classic tailoring, it does differ slightly from its counterpart. The main difference between the two is that tapered fits are usually more form hugging and snug on the body.

They are also closely related to the slim fit in that they show the body off with the shape of a tailored fit but are however cut much closer to the body for that ultimate form hugging shape. 

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What is Tapered Fit

The main difference between a tapered fit and a slim fit is that a tapered fit is wider at the top and then narrows inwards- be it at the waist of a shirt or the legs of jeans.

It doesn’t matter what type of clothing it is, a tapered cut can be applied to pretty much everything- Shirts, trousers, jeans, jackets.

While the tapered fit is similar to the slim fit it is also close to tailored clothing. Historically, tailored clothes for men were the go-to.

what is tapered fit?White Tapered Fit Shirt and Olive Tapered Fit Shirt

Then in the early 20th Century, men began having their suits tapered at the arms of the jacket and the legs of the trousers as fashion statements among the wealthy.

While a reluctant change, it signalled the start of a great change in menswear and laid down the way for men to be more expressive within what they wear, allowing them to show off their shape.

Moving through the decades, the tapered fit has become more and more popular with men who wanted tapered clothing to be casual as well.

Men who are body builders or athletic in build, are now wanting to show off their shape in the best possible way and sometimes, slim fitting doesn’t always do the trick, whereas a tapered fit gives them the best of both worlds.

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After-all there is less unnecessary fabric used and the fit overall is much closer to the curves of the body.

So what does a tapered look like? If it helps, think of tapering as a v shape. You can apply this to top half clothing and bottoms, where the top of the V will graduate down to the point.

Tapered Fit Jeans/Trousers

Slim fitting jeans do not taper or narrow and so the final look can end up being pretty boxy looking. For men with muscles, slim-sit clothing can still hide their muscles, where they would want to show them off.

That’s where tapering comes in handy. Tapered jeans/trousers narrow further down the leg so that the waist is looser and the ankle, tighter.

For many men tapered cut jeans/trousers are great for showing off bulkier leg muscles with a delicate tapering to fit to the contours of the leg muscles.

This is unlike skinny jeans which are skinny from waist to ankle. Tapered doesn’t have to be too obvious either.

Today, the best kinds of jeans allow for a comfortable waist that very gradually tapers further down the leg, to almost look like a slim fit. This is great if you don’t want to over-exaggerate your legs but still want to pinch in your trousers slightly.

As for more formal/smart casual trousers, tapering has been used for a long time now and give the wearer more of a silhouette to their shape. Great if you’ve been working on your legs and want to show them off.

Tapered Fit T-Shirts 

As with all other tapered garments, tapered t-shirts are also cut with a wider upper half that pinches in towards the bottom. In this case, the arms and chest of a T-shirt fit snuggly like a slim-fit and then narrow from the waist down.

One of the biggest advantages of this, is that less material is used and of course, less material is covering up the curves and contours you wish to show off.

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This is especially good news for those with broader shoulders and chests who need that extra shape to show off their physique. Without it, T-shirts can look shapeless and the body- wider than it actually is.

tapered fit t-shirt in navyNavy Tapered Fit T-Shirt

Tapering in T-shirts helps to create balance. So even if you opt for slim-fit trousers to keep your legs in proportion, a tapered T-shirt can help do the same.

Check out the Tapered Menswear T-shirt range.

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Tapered Fit Shirts

Here’s thing with dress shirts or more formal shirts, they can be a real pain if the fit is off.

Looser fits when tucked into the waistband (even some slim-fit styles) untuck themselves and budge, creating a billowing or a puffed up look and no man in a suit wants to look like that, trust us!

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Tapered shirts therefore are much better at keeping the shirt in place, so that you aren’t constantly tucking it in.

Not only that, but a shirt with too much excess material at the waist is only going to throw your proportions off too, especially if you are a bigger man or a man with muscles.

tapered fit shirt in white by tapered menswearWhite Tapered Fit Shirt

If your shoulders and chest are already broad, a muffin-top is only going to make you look rounder.

With a tapered- fit shirt, the v shape will hug your waist and sit smoothly against your body when tucked in or not. It will also help the rest of your suit/formal wear look sleek.

Check out the Tapered Menswear shirt range.

Tapered Fit Henley Shirts

Henley shirts can come in tapered fits? They sure do. When henley shirts first came on the scene in the 19th century, they were often worn loose for work and sport. Over time they developed into slim fitting shirts as well as loose fits.

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Today, tapered henley shirts can certainly be found on the market (our new Tapered Menswear henley shirt range for one). This helps bring them into the 21st century and allows more men of different sizes to be able to wear them.

For a man with a bulkier or more pronounced build, a henley, which may have previously been a no-go, can look flattering, comfortable and show off his physique.

tapered fit henley in whiteWhite Tapered Fit Henley

This is because much like tapered T-shirts and shirts, there is less fabric around the waist to billow and hide the body. Instead, tapered cuts mean the wearer can layer his henley under jackets and still look more streamlined with the rest of his look. 

Check out the Tapered Menswear Henley Shirt Range.

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The Best Tapered Fit

While there is nothing wrong with a slim-fit as such, tapered clothing is simply the next step in the evolution of menswear. It was this idea that prompted Tapered menswear to create clothing that gives men that something extra.

Our T-shirts, shirts, henley shirts and polos were drawn up out of the desire to provide men with their most true-to-self fit yet.

All of the clothing in our range is expertly crafted and cut in a V-tapered shape, the closest cut still available out there, so that you the wearer can show off your physique like you deserve to. 

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The chest and shoulders have the snug fit of a slim cut, while the arms hug the biceps so that there is never any overhang.

The v-tapered cut also reduced the amount of unnecessary material flowing from the waist, so that you also never have to worry about looking shapeless ever again.

Olive Tapered Fit Shirt

Our clothes, whether formal or casual cater to every man but especially those with more muscular builds who otherwise struggle to find clothing that suits their physique off-the-rack.

Whether formal or casual, you are guaranteed to find something that shows-off your hard work at the gym, keeps you in proportion and still offers you high-performance quality through and through.

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Our ranges are made with high-quality cotton stretch material, to mould comfortably to your body, while still giving you all the space you need to move.

And with something for every occasion, you’re bound to find something that works for you and your style. 

Available in both long sleeve and short sleeve muscle fit shirts.

Want to start your tapered journey? Check out our range today.