How to Choose the Right Necklace Length

Have you ever brought a necklace home from the store, only to find that it didn’t fit around your neck or drooped so low that you couldn’t see it underneath your shirt? Not all necklaces have the same chain length. Some necklaces are meant to hang around your neck like a choker while others hang between your collarbones to accentuate the pendant. You’ll also need to measure your neck to find the right length for you. A necklace that hangs too tightly around your neck might be too loose on someone else.

When you’re shopping for jewelry online, you can’t exactly try on the merchandise before you buy it. Fortunately, this necklace chain lengths guide can help you find the right length for you. Necklace chain lengths can vary, but one thing that won’t change is your body type. When you think about chain lengths, you should also consider how you want the necklace to fit–do you want a choker-style necklace or a hanging pendant? Before you go shopping, read this necklace chain lengths guide to figure out the perfect size.

How to Choose the Right Chain Length

rating 1 2
rating 1 2
rating 1 2

How Loose Do You Want Your Necklace to Be?

Men’s and women’s necklaces come in five standard sizes. The smallest necklace hangs around your neck like a choker. The next size fits around your collarbone while the next size hangs a few inches lower. The next size hangs above your neckline or sternum. Finally, the last size plunges below the neckline and hangs loosely around your neck. Depending on the size of your neck, you might need a necklace that’s a few inches shorter or longer to achieve your desired fit.

The different necklace chain lengths aren’t just for comfort–they also accentuate your personal style. Think about how you plan to use your necklace. If you tend to wear shirts with a plunging neckline, you might want a necklace that rests near your collarbone. On the other hand, if you plan on wearing your necklace with shirts or dresses with high collars, you might want a loose-fitting necklace with an attractive pendant. You should also think about the upcoming season and the clothes that you’ll wear to accommodate the hot or cold weather.

What Are the Standard Sizes for Men and Women?

Necklace Sizes For Women

For women, 16'' is a choker-style necklace that fits tightly around your neck. When you get up to 18'', the necklace reaches your collarbone. A 20'' necklace hangs below your collarbone while 22'' reaches your neckline. 24'' is the maximum standard length and has the loosest fit around your neck.

Necklace Sizes For Men

Men's necklaces tend to be a little longer. The standard sizes start at 18'' for the tightest fit, then advance to 20'' if you want something a little looser. 22'' necklaces hang above your collarbone while 24'' necklaces hang above your sternum. 30'' is the largest size and hangs right over your sternum.

How Do You Know Which Chain Lengths Are Right for You?

Now that you have your ideal fit in mind, you’ll need to measure your neck so you can choose the right size. You might need to go a few inches shorter or longer than you planned for a precise fit. To measure your neck, all you need is a measuring tape that measures the circumference. Once you have your size, add two inches to get the perfect length for your necklace. This gives the necklace some room to hang down so it’s not wrapped tightly around your neck.

If you already have necklaces that fit perfectly, you could measure the chains to figure out what size you need. This won’t give you a perfect estimate, but you could also measure out a piece of string and hang it around your neck to see what the different sizes might look like.

What Other Factors Could Affect the Length?

If you’re buying a necklace with a heavy pendant, the chain will droop lower around your neck. Conversely, if you’re buying a chain or a fabric choker, the necklace will have a tighter fit. A thicker chain might also weigh on your neck more heavily than a lighter chain. Thicker chains tend to hang in an oval shape while thin chains with a pendant drop in a triangle shape around your neck.

rating 1 2
rating 1 2
rating 1 2

Why is it Important to Find the Right Size?

Many online jewelry stores don’t accept returns unless they ship a damaged or defective product. If you buy the wrong size, you’re stuck with it. You might be able to contact customer service if you need help choosing a size, but you don’t want to make a purchase until you know exactly what you’re getting. Some in-person jewelers can resize your jewelry, but you’ll have to pay an extra fee on top of the money that you paid for the necklace

How Do You Know What Size You’re Getting?

As you search for a necklace, pay attention to the product description. Some necklaces only come in a single size. Others have multiple size options, but you’ll have to choose the size before you check out. You might have to convert inches to centimeters or vice versa. Additionally, keep in mind that women’s and men’s necklaces have varying sizes.