My neck is extremely thick for no reason

My neck has been very thick - in an unsightly way - for years. I hardly work out or exercise, so I don’t think it’s that. Nobody else in my family has this issue, so it’s not genetic. I get very self-conscious about the unsightliness of it. There’s not much plausible explanation. I consulted a doctor once and I don’t recall that he had much of any meaningful advice to offer - I mean, it’s not like you can have plastic surgery for this either. Anyone have any thoughts, other than just wearing super-high collars to hide it (which would only look weirder?)
(FWIW, I’m a man in my late 20s.)

Stop obsessing about it. Nobody else notices. Buy shirts that fit. Cultivate the bow tie.

Maybe you should try it. People carry fat in different places, maybe you tend to collect it in your neck. What is your BMI?

If your neck is thick - not just rolls of fat or loose skin - you should be checked by a doctor for goiter. This can be a symptom of an enlarged thyroid.

How many inches is it?

Depending on how big we are talking, a lot of men would be envious. I don’t want to make light if it’s a serious health issue or something. However, some would see this like complaining about having a big penis. Right now some guy is rushing out to order a neck weight-lifting harness.

If it is something medical, yeah- see if you can get checked out and eliminate anything serious.

There’s some genetic condition–as in an “oops something went wrong” condition, not a “runs in the family” one–that produces webbed neck, attached earlobes, and a dent in the center of the chest. IIRC the only functional problem is that sometimes people with it have heart defects, too.

Do you have attached earlobes? Unfortunately I can’t remember the name of the disorder now.

Shirt collars were invented by a pencil necked geek. I don’t know how the skinny necked guys regular shirts were designed for manage to hold up their heads. I may have one shirt that I can close up to put on a tie and not be choking on it all day. Luckily I rarely need to wear a tie, lately it’s only been when someone dies, or gets married, which isn’t much different.

Dress shirts come in different neck sizes. What is your neck size?

When I was younger my neck was 21". For a while I’ve been able to wear a 19 1/2, the largest size I can find off the shelf, it’s been tight, but as I get older it’s beginning to fit. The problem with all large size clothes is that you don’t find many on the shelf or rack, I’m stuck with the one or two 50-52" jackets available. Pants won’t fit over my thighs unless they’re way too big, shirts that fit my arms and shoulders comfortably and are long enough to tuck in properly are like tents. On the other hand I can go over to the work pants section and buy Dickies and the like that are just my size.

In school, was your nickname Pumpkinhead?


For a while it was Mountain. I’d figure a Pumpkinhead would have a big head and small neck.

How tall are you, if I may ask?

BMI is about 21.1.

6 foot. I’m just built wide and thick. And I have additional padding on top of that.

So, 5’ 10"? KIDDING! (mostly)

It sounds like your neck is in proportion to your build, based on your description.

It is kind of. If my legs were a few inches longer my proportions would be pretty common. I have shrunk though, I could stretch close to 6’ 1" when I was younger, now I’m stretching to get to 6’. Probably standing around I’m no more than 5’ 10".

That does not strike me as outrageous. What is your neck size, in inches?

My BMI is almost 29, and my neck 17 1/2", but I do exercise a great deal. I can’t find shirts to fit, but that has as much to do with having a 35" waist (and a 46" chest) as a 17 1/2" neck. Shirts either fit in the neck and chest and balloon like a circus tent in the waist, or fit in the waist and I can’t close the top two buttons.

Usually I get shirts to fit in the neck and chest and my wife alters them to fit (bless her).


At least you don’t have this issue.
Pencil Neck Geek

My husband has the same issue. Squeezes into a 19 1/2 inch neck. Also has really long arms and is only five ten - he doesn’t really do dress shirts and ties - and when he needs to, gets fitted at Nordstrom.