For many of us, shorts are a summer staple, and for the lucky few, shorts are a year-round necessity. So whether you rock shorts no matter the season (we’re looking at you, Miami!) or you covet those months in which you get to let your legs free, having a few pairs of cute and practical shorts in your wardrobe is key. The good news is that there are a huge variety of styles, materials, and cuts you can choose from when it comes to picking out your go-to shorts.
That means that no matter your preferences, comfort levels, or the activities you partake in on sunnier days, there’s a pair of shorts out there for you.
Having a few pairs of high-waisted shorts is a must. This rise tends to be perfect on every body type, as they help define the waist and sit comfortably just above the stomach area, which means you won’t have any fabric digging into your stomach throughout the day. These shorts are ideal for summer picnics or backyard BBQs, as they're stylish while still being comfortable enough for all-day wear.
High-waisted shorts come in any material, color, pattern, and length that you can dream of. For a few pairs that you’ll get a ton of use out of, opt for a linen or cotton pair and a classic denim pair as well. This shorts style looks great with a breezy cropped tunic or a blouse with a French tuck on top.
Women’s Bermuda shorts are another essential. Bermuda shorts tend to be longer than other styles of shorts, falling right at or above the knee. The added length makes these perfect if you like to feel the sunshine on your legs while still having a fair amount of coverage. Plus, Bermuda shorts often have more pockets (yes, pockets!) than other women’s shorts styles, which adds to the practicality of these bottoms.
Opt for stretchy blue or black denim, or go for khaki or a nice pastel shade in terms of the material. This style of shorts looks great with a classic tee-shirt, tunic top, or Oxford button-up on top and can be worn with sneakers or cute summery sandals. Bermuda shorts also come in different rises, so go with mid-rise or high-rise, depending on what you’re most comfortable in.
When we think of denim shorts, many of us picture daisy dukes—super short and even more form-fitting. Though, the thing about denim shorts is that there are so many varieties that tend to be a little more flattering and comfortable than those short shorts.
Just as relaxed, straight-leg jeans are trending right now, so are denim shorts with a relaxed fit. This style of women’s shorts is equal parts trendy and comfy, while also being versatile enough to rock with an array of tops. Relaxed denim shorts tend to have a slightly looser silhouette without being baggy, which means they're a super flattering cut on every body type. This style of shorts will quickly become a favorite for putting together stylish summery looks.
While bike shorts are also known as cycling shorts, these definitely aren’t just for bike rides. A pair of plain black cotton or spandex bike shorts are a style of shorts you should definitely have in your life, as they serve as a cute and practical layer under dresses or skirts.
Rock your bike shorts under a breezy summer dress for added mobility or under a midi skirt for comfort and coverage. Throwing your bike shorts on as a bottom layer can make all the difference when it comes to windy days or wearing a shorter dress or skirt to a picnic or somewhere else you might be sitting throughout the day. Plus, bike shorts can, of course, be worn as athletic bottoms as well, so you’ll be sure to get a ton of use out of these shorts all year long.
Women’s cotton shorts are a necessity when it comes to warm-weather lounging or if maximizing your comfort is what your style is all about.
Cotton shorts come in various styles, fits, and designs—from active shorts with pockets to mid-rise pull-on chino shorts in cute prints—but what they all share in common is their soft feel. As a result, cotton is an ideal material for hot days when you can’t be bothered to wear anything cumbersome, which means these shorts are oh-so-easy to care for.
We hope this list leaves you feeling inspired to let your legs soak up the sunshine! With these types of shorts in your closet, you’ll be covered (but not too covered) no matter what the day holds or what your style preferences are.