The summer sizzle is upon us, which means that a lot of the men out there are going to be ditching the men’s pants and moving on to shorts. But, in the world of menswear, transitioning to shorts can be a risky move. The wrong length can have you looking like it’s your first day of primary school, and the wrong styling can have you looking like a blast from the unfashionable past. Like most of the men’s fashion world, the faux pas can even be a subtle misstyling. Luckily, we have all the tips and unwavering rules of style for rocking a pair of men’s shorts.
While Daniel Craig as James Bond may have normalized shorter shorts for men in some circles, we say to play it risk-free and not overexpose your legs. And while shorts have generally gotten shorter on men over the last decade, we say a length that touches the bottom of the thigh is best. This cut flatters almost any body shape and avoids cutting off the knee at the wrong place.
The shorts should have a slight taper to the knee, and the edges shouldn’t extend beyond the hip’s width; otherwise, you may be looking a little too boxy. Even for men who wear big and tall shorts, too wide of a leg cut can make the calves look a little disproportionately small. The low-thigh golden spot is truly best for any body type, whether you’re trying to cover up or show more skin. To create the illusion of a shorter short, try opting for shorts with cuffs at the bottom.
Chino shorts are some of the all-around best shorts for summer. The go-to style for picnics, BBQs, and balmy evenings, yet fancy enough to wear out after dark, chino shorts certainly cover all the stops. They are lightweight, comfortable, and can either be dressed up or down for all your warm-weather needs.
Style with a sleek-looking linen men’s button-down shirt and a pair of loafers for the ideal suave summertime look. This ensemble should take you straight from daytime and into the night. Top off with a lightweight navy blazer for an added flair. Dress down by styling with a comfortable cotton T-shirt and a pair of sandals to wear to a picnic or barbecue.
If you need a pair of shorts a little more durable and ready for all those outdoor summer DIY projects, then it’s time to find a pair of denim shorts. Denim is more durable, meaning it will withstand more wear-and-tear and washing than a regular pair of cotton shorts. Choose a pair of denim shorts that are knee-length for the best look and a darker wash to transition to the evening.
Wear with a fitted T-shirt, a button-down shirt, or a well-fitted men’s sweater or sweatshirt for a casual yet well-kept look. Unless you’re going to the beach or hanging around the backyard, avoid wearing denim shorts with sneakers or sandals. Instead, opt for a pair of canvas or leather low-top shoes for a tidier look.
A simple pair of tailored shorts can be the perfect professional look for summer. If your office or workplace doesn’t mind you showing off those calves, then a pair of tailored shorts are the way to go for those extra-hot summer workdays. Choose a pair that sits just above the knee and has no added features such as zip pockets or flaps to make it look as sleek and simple as possible. Also, opt for neutral, solid hues that are perfect for summer.
Wear with a men’s dress shirt, dress shoes, and a lightweight cotton or linen blazer. This look can take you from the office straight to a dinner date or upscale restaurant.
Your ideal shorts for all your summer activities and sports shorts are made for the man who loves staying active all summer. From running to hiking, yoga to sports, a pair of sports shorts is an absolute must. Men’s athletic shorts come in all kinds of cuts, styles, fabrics, and functions, ensuring you find the pair that’s perfect for you.
Style with a sports shirt, a sweatshirt, or a plain old T-shirt for that ideal active look. Add a pair of sneakers, hiking boots, or active sandals for the ultimate look.
Who says swim shorts aren’t stylish? Surely not us. Swim shorts, men’s board shorts, and swim trunks can all be styled in a way that makes them daytime-appropriate for summer. Wear with a UV-protective swim shirt for those blazing beach days when the extra sun protection is a must. Rock them throughout the day with a cotton T-shirt for a laid-back and comfortable look.
Dress your swim shorts up a little bit with a linen shirt, and head over to the beach bar or restaurant at sunset. While patterns and prints can be fun, we recommend wearing neutral patterns and colored swim shorts with a matching shirt if you’re planning on wearing this look to anywhere but the beach.
Keep these rules and styling tips in mind, and you’ll be sure to perfectly rock men’s shorts all summer long.