Finding that perfect pair of men’s casual shorts can be difficult, but it doesn’t need to be since there are so many excellent styles that are comfortable and look great. Whether you love a leg-baring 5-inch inseam, a more modest 7-inch length, or even a full coverage 10-inch or longer hem, we have put together a list of all of the most comfortable men’s casual shorts broken down by inseam length.
Scroll through to see our edit of the most popular men’s shorts on the market right now that feel great in the heat and that will give you all-day comfort.
What Inseam Length Should You Get?
The inseam refers to where the hem will fall on a pair of shorts. One thing to note is that your height plays a significant role in what inseam works best for you.
If you have a diminutive stature, a smaller inseam may be the right choice, or if you are tall, you may feel more comfortable with one of the longer lengths.
Take a moment to measure from the bottom of your crotch along the inner side of your leg to the area on your leg where you want the hem to fall. That measurement is the inseam length that you should look for.
The Best Men’s Shorts with 5 and 6″ Inseams
A 5-inch inseam is pretty small and is what you will want to look for if you are interested in showing a decent amount of your leg or are looking for less fabric, so you stay cooler.
The following are a few of the best shorter-length styles.
Chubbies The Khakinators 5.5″ (Stretch)
Chubbies make trendy retro-inspired men’s shorts that are along the lines of the styles that were popular in the 60s, 70s, and early 80s (Tom Selleck in the original Magnum P.I. comes to mind). They aren’t for everyone, but those who love them really love them.
Chubbies’ fun styles have a lot going for them. The key to one of their most popular designs, The Khakinator, is the super stretchy material that makes them easy to move around in, which can be a little bit more challenging to find in a smaller length. The inseam is only 5.5″, so they are definitely on the smaller side. They also have an elastic waistband, which is always a good sign if you are looking for comfort. The Khakinators also feature two front pockets and a large back pocket that can easily fit a phone. If you love the retro look, Chubbies is a great brand to check out.
Available from Chubbies
Bonobos Stretch Washed Chino Shorts
Bonobos Stretch Washed Chino Shorts are a high-quality design that you can get in the 5″ length. Bonobos designs are generally known for their comfortable feel and wide range of sizing options to help you get the best fit, and their shorts are no exception. They are offered in 12 colors in 3 different inseams (5, 7, and 9 inches).
You can get the 5-inch option in a slim or a standard fit, while the 7 and 9 lengths are available in slim, standard, as well as athletic fits. The fabric is a stretch cotton twill that is known for being comfy and easy to move in. The final notable feature is the curved waistband that is soft and smooth and won’t bind or pinch your midsection.
Available from Bonobos
J. Crew Dock Short
The J. Crew Dock Short is a perennial favorite for lots of men. They have a 6″ inseam and a casual, relaxed fit that are perfect for lazy summer days. The fabric is a relatively soft, breathable, sweat-wicking cotton. The fit is loose, with a good amount of space in the legs and the waist to allow for plenty of movement.
Despite the relaxed feel of this design, they can be dressed up with a polo shirt to look more put together if needed.
Available from J. Crew
Old Navy Slim Ultimate Shorts for Men
The Old Navy Slim Ultimate Shorts for Men are a great budget choice that will work well for most men who are looking for a slim fit option with a slightly smaller hem. They are a simple design with side pockets and welt pockets in the back.
The material is a soft-washed cotton twill that is blended with spandex for a bit of stretch that makes the fabric easy to move around in. Since they are Old Navy, you will want to make sure you get them on sale, and if you do, the price will be very low.
Available from Old Navy
Lands’ End Men’s Comfort Waist 6″ No Iron Chino Shorts
Lands’ End Men’s Comfort Waist 6″ No Iron Chino Shorts are another style that has been made for comfort. The fabric is a crisp looking 100% cotton twill that is stain resistant and doesn’t need to be ironed. Since the fabric is smooth, it creates a polished look that makes it relatively dressy.
The design is a standard two front and two back pockets in a classic cut, so it will work well for men who are looking for a more traditional style. The waistband can stretch up to 2″, which is an excellent feature that will give you a bit of room if they need to expand after a big meal.
Available from Lands’ End
7-inch Inseam Styles
The 7″ inseam is the best length if you like a design that isn’t too short or too long and you are of average height. This length often looks the most modern and stylish and typically will fall one to three inches above the knee.
If you aren’t very tall, 7 inches can be a good option if you like a decent amount of coverage on your legs or if you are tall and like a shorter look.
Everlane The Performance Chino 7″ Short
Everlane’s The Performance Chino is a popular 7″ inseam style that is good quality and super durable, so it will last quite a long time. The fit is pretty slim and tailored, and the length means they will hit a few inches above the knee on most men.
This chino style is known for having a great fit giving a bit of room where you would want it. The fabric is breathable and soft, washes well, and looks polished. The Performance Chino is also available in a 9-inch option.
Available from Everlane
Gap 7″ Easy Shorts
These Gap 7″ Easy Shorts are one of the Gap’s most popular styles that men come back to year after year. The design is loved because of the comfy, breathable, yet sturdy twill weave that holds up well to summer wear.
The material has a slightly distressed lived-in look that also has a little bit of flex to it, so they are easy to move around in and are very relaxed and casual. You can get this Vintage style in a variety of lengths up to 12″.
Available from Gap
Amazon Essentials Men’s Classic-fit 7″ Short
Amazon Essentials Men’s Classic-fit 7″ Short is an inexpensive option that seems to work well for a lot of men. They are a 100% cotton chino design that has a classic fit, making them versatile as a casual style or for a more dressy look.
For the price, the quality is considered pretty good, although if you are interested in this style, the sizing runs small, so you may need to size up.
Available from Amazon
J. Crew 7″ Tech Short
The 7″ Tech Short is another bestselling style from J. Crew; they are popular because they feel like a comfy athletic style but look like a dressy chino.
They are made from a stretch nylon blend that is water-resistant and has UPF 50+ sun protection. The pockets are deep enough for a phone or for other items you may need. Men love the fit, comfort, feel, and versatility of this style.
Available from J. Crew
9 and 10-inch Inseam Styles
Inseams that are 9 inches and up are good options if you are very tall and/or want your shorts to fall just above or at the knee.
Longer lengths can work well for a dressier outing or for work, as they often have a classic conservative look to them.
Dockers Men’s Classic-Fit Perfect Short
The Dockers Men’s Classic-Fit Perfect Short is a go-to design that is a favorite for a lot of men. You can get them in 100 cotton that has an inseam of 10.5″ or stretch cotton that has an inseam of 9.5″.
If you are interested in this style and are looking at it online, be aware of the different inseam lengths and the difference between the stretch cotton and the 100% cotton option. Apart from the difference in the fabrics, the basic design is a relaxed, classic fit through the seat and thighs that works well for lots of body types and age groups.
One interesting feature of this design is the large smartphone pocket that many men really like. This classic fit style is available in many colors, with a few interesting pattern options as well.
Available from Amazon
Men’s 9″ Flat Front Shorts – Goodfellow & Co™
The 9″ Flat Front Shorts – Goodfellow & Co™ is one of Target’s bestselling men’s options. People like this style because of the breathable poplin cotton fabric that has a bit of stretch that makes for a comfortable feel and fit.
This Goodfellow & Co. design is a pick that looks nice and can easily be dressed up or down. Reviews mention that they don’t wrinkle much even after wearing them all day, and most reviewers feel that these are good quality for a relatively low price.
Available from Target
Vineyard Vines 9 Inch Breaker Shorts
Vineyard Vines 9 Inch Breaker design is many men’s go-to style due to the fabric’s high-quality feel and classic fit. They have a pretty standard flat front design with side and back pockets that looks great with a button-down or a t-shirt.
Vineyard Vines made this design with a stretch cotton that has a nice softness that can maintain a clean look throughout the day.
Available from VineyardVines.com
Lululemon Commission Short Warpstreme 9″ Classic
Lululemon Commission Short Warpstreme 9″ Classic is an interesting mix of performance fabric with a chino design. The Commission line is part of Lululemons casual clothes that aren’t really meant for working out but are great for everyday wear.
Like a lot of Lululemon pants, the stand-out feature is the soft four-way stretch, lightweight fabric that is breathable and offers all-day comfort for different situations. This style looks equally good with button-down shirts, polo shirts, or t-shirts. They also come in a 7″ length.
Available from Lululemon
Lived-In Straight Khaki Shorts for Men – 10-inch inseam
The Old Navy Lived-In Straight Khaki Shorts for Men are a summertime favorite for a lot of men. This relaxed style is perfect for almost any warm-weather activity. The inseam is 10.5 inches, so they are a great choice if you are looking for a longer-length hem.
The soft-washed 100% cotton twill has a broken-in feel to it, making them comfy to wear the moment you put them on. Most men find this Old Navy design to have a great fit, good quality feel, and a nice look to them.
Available from Old Navy
Read more: 10 of the Most Comfortable Men’s T-Shirts Around
Other Stuff to Look for When Shopping for Men’s Shorts
You probably already know what you like and what to look for when shopping for men’s shorts, but if you don’t, keep in mind a couple of things:
Fit: Obviously, you will want shorts that fit you well. For some men, that will mean a nice slim fit, while others will prefer a looser cut. Also, think about the length and design of the shorts, and choose a style that fits your body type well.
Fabric: The fabric of your shorts is important because it affects both comfort and durability. Some popular materials for men’s shorts include cotton, polyester, and some of the newer nylon tech fabrics.
Style: Men’s shorts come in a variety of styles, including cargo, chino, and athletic. Depending on what you are planning on wearing the shorts for, you will want to make sure you choose the right style that is neither too formal nor informal for the activity.
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