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The Best Men’s Shorts Guide You’ll Read This Summer

Men's Wardrobe Essentials
Monday, 29th July, 2019

The Best Men's Shorts Guide

When the summer comes and the temperatures go up, there’s only one item of clothing which will do for your lower half. Guys, I am of course talking about shorts.

You may think of shorts as one item of clothing, but there’s a whole range of different styles, fits and types which you need to think about.

In this guide you’ll find out about the essential pairs of shorts you need in your wardrobe, for this summer and beyond.

The Fit

It you’ve ever read a fashion guide about men’s style, you’ll already be aware that the fit is key, and that’s no different in shorts. In fact, the fit is even more important, because unlike jeans, there’s a large number of different lengths as well as fits which you can get.

How Long Should Men’s Shorts Be?

For a stylish fit, the length of your shorts should be just above the knee, and no longer. There can be variations of this, depending on the style of shorts you go for, with some being slightly shorter.

As a general rule of thumb, they should finish a few inches above your knee.

What is the inseam on shorts? The inseam in shorts is measured from the crotch along the inner side of the leg,until the end of the shorts. Usual lengths are 5″, 7″ and 9″, which will of course end at different parts of your leg, depending on your leg length.

It should go without saying, that longer shorts are a no-go, and of course, never wear a pair of 3/4 pants or long shorts that go below the knee. They should also not be ridiculously short, you’re not Kylie in hot pants after all.

Different Types Of Shorts

All shorts are not created equally, there’s various different types of shorts.

When it comes to choosing what style of shorts you should wear, you should be dressing for the occasion, like with every other item of clothing. There’s a few different types of shorts you can choose from, each one suited to a particular occasion, sometimes more.

Remember, if you’re wearing socks with shorts, they should be no show, which as the name suggests, gives the impression you’re not wearing socks.

Here’s the different kinds of shorts you’ll be able to wear this summer.

Get The Perfect Fit Of Shorts

Chino Shorts

When it comes to day to day wear, chino shorts are right up there with being the most versatile. They can be worn as part of a smart casual outfit, and are perfect if you’re packing for a lads weekend away in a city.

There’s nothing going to keep you more cool, and look stylish than a pair of chino shorts. For the sake of practicality, I prefer a 5-pocket pair of chinos, although you can opt for jeans, which comes next. You can wear these as is, or style them with a belt.

How To Style Chino Shorts

You can wear chino shorts with absolutely anything. Keep the look smart casual by pairing them with a short sleeve shirt or a smart plain T Shirt, along with a pair of smart trainers.

Denim Shorts

When it comes to denim shorts, there’s two different kinds you can get. You can go for the usual denim  jean shorts, in that they’re that blue denim colour, with the jean kind of finish to them. These are usually more rough, hard and not flexible, which you may not want.

Instead, you can opt for a soft denim in a different colour, for instance black, white or other colours.

How To Style Denim Shorts

Slightly more casual than chinos, you could pair denim shorts with a casual shirt such as a check shirt, or opt for a casual logo or small graphic T Shirt. Wear them with a pair of trainers

The fit of denim shorts is usually a little bit tighter than a chino, and so if you prefer a looser but still fitted feel, the chinos may be the shorts to go for.

Tailored Shorts

If you’re in a situation when you need to dress up in a smarter setting but shorts are still allowed, the tailored shorts are the ones to go for. These are simply like your usual tailored trousers, but in a short form.

Incredibly similar to chinos, you’ll be able to get these with a more professional look, with pleated or un-pleated variants being available, they’re usually seen in more toned down colours.

How To Style Tailored Shorts

As you’d have imagined, tailored shorts are the smartest on the list, so you need to wear the correct clothing with them. This could be a smart, plain shirt such as wearing with a white shirt, and if you can handle a jacket, only a blazer or suit jacket will do.

Pair them up with a pair of loafers and you’re good to go.

Sweat Shorts

If you’re looking to get yourself a pair of sweat shorts this summer, there’s probably not a more relaxed thing you can get yourself. Soft, loose and casual, they’re the perfect item to wear on your lower half when you’re just chilling or relaxing.

Made from sweatshirt material, they’re a mid length, elasticated pair of short

Styling Sweat Shorts

The comfy shorts does mean that they’re seen as one of the least formal pairs of shorts you can get, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. You could go the streetwear look and wear them as a pair of co-ords.

Otherwise, you could style a pair of sweat shorts with an easy to wear T Shirt, and if you need something on your feet, a pair of casual trainers.

The Best Men's Swim Shorts From Luxury Designers

Swim Shorts

Heading off to the beach? Swim shorts should be something you seriously consider. They haven’t had the greatest of reputation when it comes to style, we’ve seen the super short pairs as well as the silly long shorts, but it’s in the middle where the stylish swim shorts lie.

They are usually a little shorter than the others in this list, coming up a few inches above your knee and are complete with a drawstring.

If you’re going on holiday they are a very good investment. You can wear swim shorts around the pool, at the beach, and they won’t look out of place around the resort if you’re in a casual setting.

How To Style Swim Shorts

As these are a casual pair of shorts, you’ll want to pair them up with a simple T Shirt. If you’re going in the pool or to the beach, you could be taking off your top. When it comes to footwear, a pair of sliders, stylish flip flops or deck shoes will be preferable.

Sports Shorts

I have included sports shorts, just to round up the different types of shorts which are available. However, I would only recommend wearing these if you’re doing activities which require their use. For one reason, they are incredibly impractical, as they usually don’t come with pockets.

You should wear these while doing sports or going to the gym.

How To Style Sports Shorts

You’ll want to style sports shorts with a sports T Shirt, along with a pair of sports trainers.

The Best Shorts This Summer

There’s plenty of brands which sell men’s shorts, in every price point. There’s the budget, the high street and of course, luxury shorts, if you’re looking for something extra special.


The Best Vilebrequin Swim Shorts

When it comes to luxury and elegant swim shorts, Vilebrequin is one of the premier brands you can go to. Keeping with the spirit of 1970s St. Tropez, there’s plenty of bright solid colours, along with more distinctive but tasteful patterns.

Treat yourself this summer with a pair of Vilebrequin swim shorts.

Orlebar Brown

The Best Men's Shorts - Orlebar Brown Swimwear

Another brand to consider when you’re thinking about designer and luxury swimwear is Orlebar Brown. Sporting a collaboration with 007, you know your swim shorts are in safe hands from the brand based in London.


Mackeene Swim Shorts - Luxury style of swim wear

Mackeene are a premium clothing brand with swim shorts deep in their roots, and it’s no wonder, being linked with St. Barths. Their luxury swimwear has to be considered if you’re looking to get something extra special in the swim shorts department.

The cool magnetic snap closure gives them that extra premium feel to them, and come in eco friendly packaging.

Derek Rose

Derek Rose Luxury Swim Shorts

Derek Rose is a brand which is well known for it’s high end luxury basics, and has a good selection of high end swimwear, including these swim shorts. There’s bright bold colours, as well as more toned down neutral ones, and some patterns and prints which are tastefully done.


The Best Men's Shorts - Sunspel

One of the king’s of men’s basic T Shirts, Sunspel also has a very good offering of shorts in all styles. From swim shorts to relaxed loopback sweat shorts, as well as smarter chino shorts, which is what I’ve picked out.

POLO by Ralph Lauren Shorts

POLO Ralph Lauren Shorts

There’s a lot of shorts in the POLO by Ralph Lauren range, at the more expensive end of the high street scale. Known for it’s preppy clothing, I’ve picked out a pair of tailored shorts for the smart occasions, along with a slightly more casual, yet still smart chino pair.


Allsaints Swim Shorts

Allsaints have a number of shorts, with plenty of denim shorts, as you’d expect from a denim brand. I’ve picked out some of their swim shorts, which are a better length, and come in a range of colours.

Tommy Hilfiger

Tommy Hilfiger Shorts

Tommy Hilfiger has re-gained a lot of popularity over the past few years with it’s new age branding along with it’s 90’s inspired clothing, so wearing a pair of Tommy Hilfiger shorts will not look out of place. You can be fashionable in a pair of their cotton twill shorts, which come with the trademark red, white and blue colours in a belt form.


The Best Shorts At H&M

H&M have a large collection of various shorts, including all the shorts mentioned in this guide. I’ve picked out a pair of sweat shorts, chino shorts as well as some soft jean shorts, all perfect for this season. Shorts start at under £10.

Mango Man

Mango Man Shorts

When it comes to high street brand, Mango Man is another which is a very fashionable brand which offers a lot of different styles of shorts. There’s chinos along with denim shorts, swimwear and more, whatever shorts you’re looking for, you’ll find them at the Spanish brand. You can see their collection.


Levi's Denim Shorts

When it comes to picking out a pair of denim shorts, Levi’s has to be one of the brand’s you consider. They are one of the most old school and original denim brands out there, so they know what they’re doing when it comes to jean shorts. They have their trademark 501, as well as a slim 511 jeans available. Check them all out.


Uniqlo Men's Shorts

When it comes to quality basics at an affordable price, you have to consider looking at Uniqlo. The Japanese brand offers a vast array of shorts, from swim to chino, and also linen shorts which will see you stylish and cool this summer. You can check them all out at Uniqlo.

Marks & Spencer

Marks & Spencer Men's Shorts

When it comes to the high street, another shop to consider is Marks & Spencer. M&S have a wide range of shorts, including chinos, linen and denim shorts to name just a few. I’ve picked out some lightweight chinos above, which come in several different colours. See more of the M&S Collection.


When it comes to summer fashion, you should own a good pair of shorts. The type of shorts would depend on your own lifestyle and when you wear them, but owning a few pair would be advisable.

No matter if you’re wearing them at home or on your holidays, they can make a good investment, buying classic and timeless designs will last for plenty of summers to come.

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Michael Adams

About Michael

Michael Adams is the founder and editor of Michael 84, blogger and T-shirt designer from Newcastle, UK. Sharing men's fashion tips, style advice and lifestyle information for all guys.

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