Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
Backpacking Forums
backcountry gear

---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store

Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen


Avalanche Gear
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters


Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel

the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags


Sleeping Bags


Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial






Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear


Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel


Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva


Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment

 Backcountry Gear Clearance

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#199468 - 11/12/17 01:57 AM Arcteryx/general sizing question
glocke12 Offline

Registered: 11/12/17
Posts: 2
Newbie here (may have actually had an account here years ago but if so I forget the login for it), hopefully this is the right place for this question.

Does anyone here need to size up for outerwear?

I was checking out the Arcteryx Cerium hoodie yesterday, and going by their size charts I should take a medium. Im 185 lbs, 38-39" chest, 32-33 " waist and a medium fit fine with just a base layer on, but once I added thicker mid layer it was pretty constricting in the shoulder/upper back area so the sales person said I should go to a large which gives me the shoulder room but than is "blousy" in the front.

The same thing was essentially true for a few other brands as well. It seems these measurements are designed around rail thin people, and not guys who have a more developed upper back/shoulder/bicep area.

#199478 - 11/12/17 02:36 PM Re: Arcteryx/general sizing question [Re: glocke12]
aimless Offline

Registered: 02/05/03
Posts: 3015
Loc: Portland, OR
The basic problem here is that bodies come in thousands of shapes, but ready-made clothes come in only a few standard sizes: S / M / L / XL. This provides a mediocre fit for large numbers of people and a poor to very poor fit for the unlucky few. You seem to be among the unlucky ones.

Making room for your well-developed upper body and shoulders seems like more of a priority than avoiding that 'blousy' loose fit elsewhere. If you find a particular manufacturer whose standard sizing fits you well, then you've hit the jackpot! Give them your business and send them a love letter. grin

#199479 - 11/12/17 03:57 PM Re: Arcteryx/general sizing question [Re: glocke12]
wandering_daisy Offline

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 2835
Loc: California
Arcteryx has traditionally been a brand specifically for climbers who are generally lean and wiry (athletic build). I bought a jacket years ago (it is my favorite jacket). It was a men's small, which obviously some guy bought at REI and found it too small so it ended up on the sale rack. I am a 5'4" and thin woman and it fit me perfectly. My problem with women's sizing is that my shoulders are too wide and arms more "athletic" than most women of my size, so the men's x-small or small work better for me. The sleeves are a bit too long, but that is not a serious problem. I sew, so I just hem them up a little.

Rock climbers particularly do not like a lot of bulk (prefer tighter fitting stretchy clothing), so their layering usually consists of a thin base layer only.

You need to size-up in many brands of climbing clothing if you intend to do more than the thinnest layering.

#199480 - 11/12/17 04:16 PM Re: Arcteryx/general sizing question [Re: glocke12]
OregonMouse Offline

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6632
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
I have, even when skinny (which I'm currently not), unusually large hips--about 14" larger than my waist (most women's clothing is made for hips 8-10" larger than waist). As a result, i have an awful time with any clothing, unless I sew it myself (not something I've ever wanted to do, except for 1860s reproduction clothng). I have to get XL jackets if I want them to fit the top of my hips instead of bunching at the waist. At least I can layer lots of stuff underneath!

As Aimless says, most of us do not have bodies that fit the supposed "models" that clothing companies use. It doesn't help that, despite so-called standard measurements, each model is different. If you want perfectly fitting clothing, either learn to sew or hire a seamstress/tailor. Or put up with the "blousiness."

It does help a little to shop around and try many different brands. Some fit better than others.

Edited by OregonMouse (11/12/17 04:18 PM)
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

#199505 - 11/14/17 04:07 AM Re: Arcteryx/general sizing question [Re: OregonMouse]
glocke12 Offline

Registered: 11/12/17
Posts: 2
thanks for the replies...after giving it some thought I realized this jacket would essentially be my mid layer..the salesman was steering me towards the large using the logic that a zip up fleece or something would be worn under it, when the opposite is true...fleece would go over it.

went back and exchanged the large i bought for a medium and that fit is pretty good with a base layer or even a base layer and a sweater.

#201070 - 06/03/18 01:46 PM Re: Arcteryx/general sizing question [Re: glocke12]
troutstalker Offline

Registered: 06/02/18
Posts: 37
Loc: CO
Sizing up in that brand is a good idea if you plan to have a thick base layer or base layers underneath in my experience.


Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Backpacking Jacket -- Help me get my head right
by Cal_Hawkeye
03/19/19 04:16 PM
Why are manufacturers expanding there ranges ?
by Petro1234
03/06/19 09:20 AM
"Weekend" Backpacker footwear - Merrell?
by bhss89
02/24/19 05:29 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Getting Sponsored?
by Scribe247
03/20/19 12:12 PM
Full Body Yoga Stretching Routine after Hiking
by walkingnatur
03/20/19 09:29 AM
Alpine Lakes Wilderness
by toddfw2003
03/11/19 11:32 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
ideas for a dry bag for a small travel guitar
by MountainMinstrel
04:14 PM
Bamboo Spoon
by 4evrplan
03/09/19 11:48 AM
DIY pot cover/bag
by mira.mikes
02/24/19 03:52 AM
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 35 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
hammer43, Scribe247, davidhiker8b, jamesolivia, bmxbobby
12725 Registered Users
Forum Links
Site Links
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Our long-time Sponsor, - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum