What Size Chain Should A Man Wear? 2022 Guide

Last Updated on December 29, 2023

Shopping for men’s/masculine jewelry isn’t as simple as one might think.

A lot of thought is put into what the jewelry would signify on them, and how and how one would layer said chains. What thickness? What length?

Whether you intend on testing styles out with cheaper necklaces or are going to invest in a quality gold chain, you should know the basics, the questions to ask yourself, and the best ways to wear it. 

In sum, a man should choose a chain based on the size of his neck, his personal aesthetic, and body proportions. The thicker the neck, the longer and thicker the chain can be in contrast. Ideally, you should seek balance and style all at once.

You should also try the chain on if possible to be certain that the necklace would complement your facial features and hairstyle alike. 

The following will be a guide on how to incorporate chains into your aesthetic, as well as a list of numbers and proportions you should be consciously aware of. Here is how to tell what size chain should a man wear:


Take your aesthetic/style into consideration prior to selecting a color or chain style

As of the rise in and popularization of assigning yourself to a certain aesthetic with recent social media trends, many men find themselves falling into certain aesthetics. In previous decades, goths would have certain interests and wear certain things, as would the athletic guys, and so forth. 

These days, you can have any interest, specialty, or aspiration, and dress either suitably or nothing like what one would expect. This is fantastic, however, sticking to your curated sense of style becomes more difficult because the line is gradually becoming thinner. 

A good rule of thumb, in this case, is to pay attention to the design of the chain. 

  • The sharper, more detailed and knotted it is the more likely that it falls into the category of dark, edgy, alternative, or hippie fashion.
  • The thinner and longer chain, dainty and light, it’s likely for an individual with a softer aesthetic.
  • The thicker and brighter the chain, the more likely that the item is for someone who would like to show off their bling or participate in trends that were popularized by celebrities of the 90s and early 2000s.
  • A basic chain would work with your outfit no matter the vibe, but are mostly worn by sports oriented individuals and people who have more basic senses of style. 

A friendly reminder that there are no limitations, however, it is good to keep this in mind if you are trying to stick to a certain vibe. 

Some questions to ask yourself when choosing the Size:

Measure the size of your neck:

When searching for short chains, the first thing to do is to measure the circumference of your neck. This will give you an idea of what size is most suitable for you regardless of your preference. 

Get yourself a fabric measuring tape and get the digits. If you do not have this kind of measuring tape, measure the length of a sturdy fabric and wrap it around your neck. After you do that, trace where it ends and write down the number so you do not forget. This number is super important! 

Now that you know the size of your neck:

  • If yours is considerably wide/big, you should seek out longer chains.
  • Short chains will draw more attention to your neck.
  • Long chains will draw attention to your check and the shape of your torso/chest.
  • Medium chains will bring quite a bit of focus to the chest and shoulders.

How tall are you?

And be honest, we aren’t that cheerleader you like. In all reality, you’re not 5″11, you’re 5″9 and the height difference changes how a chain would look on you. The shorter you are, the shorter your chain can be because it would suit your frame. With that being said, the taller you are the longer your chain can be, proportionally.

What is your face shape?

Your face shape is a key factor when considering a necklaces’ shapes and lengths.

For example: 

A short chain would be more suited for a person with an angular face. Think of individuals with a diamond, square, or heart-shaped face. Those faces can wear short necklaces and always look fresh. 

Conversely, a circular or round face shape might not be as flattered by a choker or short necklace. 

Even so, test the necklace out before buying it because you must also consider your own facial features, as well as your hair and other factors that we cannot account for in this guide. 

What clothing do you intend on wearing with the chain?

What are your daily intentions? If you are willing to spend a lot of money on chains, you should be considering what occasions you frequent and what your day-to-day life entails. You want to be realistic with your investments, but you also want to have a fun piece of jewelry, so take this into consideration! 

Now, look at your wardrobe and ask yourself what the general vibe is. What colors do you wear most often? What colors do you know compliment you best? Ask a friend or family member for a second opinion if need be. 

When deciding between chain sizes you must also consider the chain colors; silver and gold becoming the main two for this example. 

What is the thickness of the chain?

The thickness of the chain changes the vibe of the outfit entirely. In many cases, a thick chain will be viewed as more casual or appropriate for an eventful or entertaining night. Thinner chains are more versatile in the sense that you can wear them in either case without seeming too bold. 

How does the chain hang? 

Ask yourself how the chain will hang on yourself based on the way it is constructed and how long the necklace is. Some necklaces hang downward in a structured manner, whilst others hang lightly. Some hang with a certain amount of weight, whereas others will move a bit when you walk. 

Size Ranges

As you now know, sizes range from sixteen inches to as much as thirty inches. The length of the chain will change the vibe and versatility of the chain. Not to mention, the longer the necklace, the more expensive it would likely be. 

16 – 18 Inch Chain

Necklaces that range from sixteen to eighteen inches are on the shorter end of men’s necklaces. They typically hang slightly below the collarbone. These chains will be mostly visible regardless of the accompanying apparel. 

20 – 22 Inch Chain

Chains from this size range are considered to be on the medium side. Medium chains are the most versatile of the two because, ironically, they can be considered a happy medium. 

If you have an average neck, they are a great medium and can be tucked underneath a shirt or crew neck with ease. 

They’re also a good option for those who have thicker necks than the previous range. These would look like short chains on people with necks that are 16-20 inches in thickness. 

24 – 30 Inch Chain 

Last but not least, long chains of which range from twenty-four to thirty inches. Long chains look great when worn with open-chested shirts; they can also be added onto short chains for a balanced layered look.  You can add pendants, or dog tags to the necklace as well, which looks fantastic.

Eran Hayo is the Chief Editor of Jewels Advisor, with over 5 years of experience in the fields of jewelry and memorabilia. He built Jewels Advisor to serve one main purpose – to teach you everything he knows about jewelry, and help you make better-informed decisions when buying diamonds and engagement rings online. His work has been cited on famous publications such as The Sun, MSN and WikiHow.