Keep your closet stocked with a few styles of pants and you'll never be at a loss for what to wear. A single pair can be casual or smart depending on how you style it, so don't be afraid to experiment with accessories, shoes and tops. And make sure each pair is comfortable and well made, or they'll end up never being worn or tossed in the trash after just a couple of wears.
Work clothes need to look professional, but they don't have to be uncomfortable. A pair of classic twill chino pants goes with almost anything; try them with a freshly ironed blouse or a women's sweater in the fall. For the ultimate in comfort, look for a pair with a stretchy elastic waist can you conceal with a belt. And if they're machine washable, all the better – you'll save money and time when you're not running to the dry cleaner several times a week.
Whether you're going to a wine bar with your gal pals or a dinner date with your significant other, denim leggings will do the trick. A dark wash pair always looks cool and perfectly straddles the line between dressy and casual. Wear them with your leather boots, a silky black top and a statement necklace, or try a camisole and a fitted blazer. Since they have plenty of give, they'll feel great all night long, so feel free to order dessert!
Yoga pants aren't just for yoga. You can wear them for almost any physical activity, whether it's an aerobics class, a jog around the neighborhood or a power walk in the park with your dog. They're incredibly easy to move, jump and stretch in and if they're made with moisture-wicking fabric, they'll keep you dry, too. Look for some with a high waist to provide a little support in the tummy area and flatlock seams will keep them from chafing.
Dressing for a summer celebration – whether it's a birthday or gathering of friends – can be tricky. Summer clothes can be super casual, making it hard to look elegant. But wide-leg linen pants are always classy and cool. They look gorgeous with a tucked-in top and a silky scarf, or even a simple tank. Wear them with a pair of platform or wedge sandals and treat yourself to a pedicure if you want to look extra sleek.
Once upon a time, sweatpants were pretty ugly and definitely not the kind of thing you'd wear in public. But the latest styles have a flattering tapered cut and a wide elastic waistband that looks super stylish, especially with a tucked-in top. Wear with them with some adorable sneakers and a cotton sweater when you've got a busy day ahead and you'll look as good as you feel when checking things off that long to-do list.
Going to try the best flat white in town with your gal pals? A pair of stretchy plaid pencil pants and a jean jacket will have you looking sharp. The long, lean cut can make you seem taller and the unexpected tartan print makes them a real standout. Add a black knit turtleneck or a blouse and keep your footwear simple; ankle boots and sneakers both work. And the contour waist is extra comfy, so you won't feel trapped in your trousers.
Winter is filled with celebrations and a pair of corduroys will get you through party season in style. A slim-leg pair worn with leather boots and a chunky knit sweater is a classic combination and will keep you so much warmer than a dress. Want to look a little fancier? Try a cashmere sweater with a plunging v-neckline. And make sure your have a contour waist that won't gap in back and you'll be able to sit, bend and move without fear of exposing more than you intended.
People used to dress to the nines when they went to a play, opera or musical, but these days, it's all about the smart casual look. Try some straight leg chinos in a bold color with a bit of shimmer, like a radiant navy or Dijon gold. They look similar to tuxedo pants, but they'll hug your curves in all the right places. Add a blouse and heels and you'll be good to go.