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Necklace and Chain Size Guide

Table of Contents

Standard Necklace and Chain Lengths

Women's Standard Necklace Sizes

Necklaces are manufactured to the following industry standard lengths:

16"choker length
17-18"at collarbone
20"A few inches below collarbone
22"At or above neckline
24"Below the neckline

*Choose the next size up for larger neck sizes

Men's Standard Chain Sizes

Men's neck chains are manufactured to the following industry standard lengths:

18"Base of the neck (*for smaller neck sizes)
20"to collarbone (*most common length for average men)
22"A few inches below collarbone
24"Just above the sternum

*Choose the next size up for larger neck sizes

tape measure

Measuring Your Neck Size

Don't know what size your neck is? Most women do not, while most men know their collar size. To get the approximate measurement, you can use a sewing (soft) measuring tape. If you have a tape measure, that problem is solved. If you don't have a soft measuring tape but have a yardstick, ruler or stiff metal measuring tape, you could wrap a ribbon around the base of your neck, mark the spot where it meets, and then lay it against the yardstick or metal measuring tape to determine your neck size.

Otherwise, we have provided a printable Jewelry Measurer that will serve as a measuring tape. You simply print it out, cut it, and tape it together to form a measuring tape. Then you simply wrap it around your neck near the base to get your approximate neck measurement.

NOTE: To view this type of document, you will need to have the free industry standard Adobe Acrobat reader installed on your computer to read this PDF file (If you click on the icon and the document does not open properly due to unrecognized file type, you will probably need to install this reader. To get a free, safe download from Adobe, go to Adobe's website and follow the instructions for your computer, platform and language.)

To correctly print out this sizing tool to the right size, make sure your print options are set to print the page at 100% normal size, with no Shrinking or Expanding of page to fit the page. Since screen resolution and printer settings vary for every user, these measurements are only approximate.

Choosing the Correct Necklace or Chain length

General Sizing for Necklaces and Chains

Once you know your neck size, a good rule of thumb is to choose at a minimum the second size up from your neck size. For example, for a man with a 17 ½" collar (neck) size, a chain length of 20" is recommended at a minimum. An 18" chain would be too short. With women of a neck size of 15", the minimum recommended length would be 17-18" which is a step above the next standard length of 16". For example, necklaces that lie flat on the neck such as the Omega style, a 17" should be fine. Chains with heavy pendants on them will hang slightly longer as well.

Choosing Necklace Lengths for Women

The best thing about necklaces and chains for women is that different lengths are worn for different occasions and seasons. So you can almost always use a particular necklace for some occasion. If a cowl neck or turtleneck shirt (typically worn in the winter season) is chosen, a long necklace works better. A choker length of 16" doesn't work with a high neck blouse or with a larger neck size, while an 18" necklace will hang farther down on a petite woman. So the basic neck measurement - whatever that is - really helps when you are purchasing a necklace for a particular occasion. That basic measurement is essential when purchasing a short necklace, for both fashion and size reasons.

Choosing Chain Lengths for Men

Chain lengths for men are typically chosen based on the man's collar size and typically fall just at the collar bone. A slightly longer length should be chosen if it is to be worn with a pendant, cross, medallion, emblem or sports charm of some sort. You can also choose multiple lengths for a layered look. The most common length sold to men of average neck size is 20".