5 Most Comfortable Shorts for Men: Who Says Loungers Can’t be Lookers?

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William Barton Avatar by  William Barton | Last Updated:  Oct 24, 2020
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If you’re going to wear shorts, they better be comfortable, right? But what brand is going to tell you their shorts feel like a burlap sack with a drawstring two sizes too small?

We get you. So that’s why we put together this list of five shorts we’ve personally tested. And make no mistakes. They’re comfortable.

Best Overall
  • Simple design and technical fabric allows you to keep the profile slim or carry more in your pockets
  • Super stretchy and soft fabric
  • Slimmer fit, and the drawstring at the top keeps them from riding down even if you stuff your pockets full
For Your Workout
  • Technically a workout short, but it’s stylish enough to wear out and about
  • Lined versions available (our favorite)
  • Secure interior pocket for wallet/keys
Most Comfortable Denim
  • Performance denim is the stretchiest denim we’ve tried
  • A gusset in the crotch allows for even more flexibility
  • For when you want the look of jeans, but the comfort of sweats
For the Hottest of Days
  • Thick-gauge performance fabric shows no sweat, no matter how hard you work out
  • Simple, classic colorways with eye-catching yellow waistband caps
  • Slim fit with 5.5”, 7.5”, and 9” inseam available
Most Classic Looking
  • Lightweight cotton blend is super breathable and has enough flex for comfort
  • Wide variety of sizes and colorways
  • Drawstring version available

You know the feeling. 

New pair of shorts. You take a seat. The center divider rams its way through your scrotum, divvying up your magic jumping beans. You whimper quietly.  

The guy next to you notices you’re in pain. You can’t offer any explanation—it would get too weird.

But he’s a dude. He’s been there, too. But you know what he did for himself? He checked out our top five most comfortable shorts and picked up a pair for himself. Now he can sit anywhere, anytime, without that damn inseam catching him off guard. 

Do you want to be like that guy? Keep reading. 

5 Most Comfortable Shorts for Men

1. Public Rec All Day Every Day Short

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Public Rec is one of our favorite brands—their clothes are stylish and take comfort to the next level. 

We’ve tried several pieces, but one of our favorites is the All Day Every Day Jogger. Made with the same fabric, the ADED Shorts have the same slim-fit and quality construction, but allow you to stay cool in the warmer months.

What I Like

  • All Day Every Day fabric is super stretchy and comfortable, but it’s substantial enough to look crisp and neat.

  • A drawstring keeps the ADED Shorts nice and secure.

  • Zippered pockets on the side help with carrying anything important like a phone or keys. 

  • 7” inseam is the ideal length—comes above the knee but doesn’t show too much thigh.

What I Don’t Like

  • ADED fabric picks up a lot of pet hair. It’s easy to remove with a lint roller or a piece of tape, but we figured you’d want the heads up.

What Other Reviewers Say

Last we checked, over 625 reviewers give the Public Rec All Day Every Day Short a 4.9-star average. 

Many reviewers mention that this is their third or fourth time shopping with Public Rec, too. They’ve built a following, and we understand why.

The Verdict

The Public Rec All Day Every Day Short is our favorite comfortable pair of shorts because of their versatility. 

Yes, you can spend a full day on the couch re-watching Game of Thrones and you’d feel like you spent the day in sweats. But if your boys call you up for a beer at the local brewery, you can step out in them and people won’t ask “is everything ok?”

The drawstring and zippered pockets add a level of security that you just can’t find in other shorts this comfortable.

Public Rec All Day Every Day Short

It's hard to get more comfortable than Public Rec's All Day Every Day fabric. The drawstring and uber-stretchy fabric make this comfortable enough for a backyard barbecue, but stylish enough for a trip into the city.

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2. Vuori Kore Short

model wearing vuori kore shorts and tradewind tech tshirt and flipping tire

Vuori is all about the active fit lifestyle. Their Kore workout short is the most light-weight short on this list. 

And to make things even more comfy, you can get these shorts with a liner, which eliminates the need for underwear. Unlike other lined shorts, the liner here isn’t too tight or constricting.

What I Like

  • The Kore is primarily a workout short, but it looks good enough to wear out on the town.

  • The fabric is super light and breathable.

  • There’s an interior pocket on the right that will keep your phone secure.

What I Don’t Like

  • It’s obviously a workout short, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But other shorts like the Public Rec ADED blend in a bit better for casual wear. 

What Other Reviewers Say

With over 2,200 reviews averaging 4.9-stars, it’s safe to say that the Vuori Kore is popular. It’s the brand’s most well-known item by far. 

Many reviewers mentioned they weren’t sure about whether to get the liner or not. After trying the lined Kore, they were all about it.

The Verdict

It’s one thing to have a comfortable pair of shorts. But if you can remove your boxer-briefs from the equation—even better. 

The Vuori lined Kore short is our favorite workout short. It just so happens to be one of our most comfortable pairs of shorts, too. 

While it doesn’t have the same “everyday” look as our options from Public Rec, DUER, and Everlane, it’s still a great choice for the Saturday morning farmers market crowd.

Vuori Shorts

Vuori makes a series of shorts, both lined and unlined, that fit perfectly into an active Californian lifestyle.

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3. DUER No Sweat Short

closeup model wearing duer performance denim jeans no sweat shorts

Denim is uncomfortable, right? 

Not with the DUER No Sweat Short, which has the same look as a pair of denim shorts, but has a pretty incredible amount of stretch. 

No, it’s not like stretchy-jeans, either. DUER’s proprietary No Sweat fabric is a beast of its own. Plus, the gusseted crotch adds even greater mobility, so these are our favorite comfortable shorts for any sort of strenuous activity.

What I Like

  • The No Sweat fabric looks like denim, but feels more like a technical stretch fabric. 

  • A gusseted crotch helps a ton if you’re going bike riding, rock climbing, or doing anything outdoorsy. 

  • DUER offers a few different inseam lengths and both slim and relaxed fits. 

What I Don’t Like

  • We like to cuff denim shorts, but the way these are constructed makes this difficult to pull off. 

What Other Reviewers Say

Over 350 reviewers rate the No Sweat Shorts a 4.8 out of 5. The customers writing in have a wide range of hobbies—bikers, climbers, hikers, travelers, etc. These are a must for the active folks who just can’t seem to sit still through the summer.

The Verdict

Many of the No Sweat reviewers said these were the most comfortable shorts they own. 

We’ll be honest—these aren’t the most comfortable shorts on the list.

But if you’re doing any sort of extreme sport or strenuous activity (think kayaking, hiking, climbing, skateboarding, etc.) these offer the most durability. So we say DUER offers the most durable, protective short you can get while still staying in the upper-echelon of comfort.

4. Olivers All Over Short

model running wearing olivers all over short

The Olivers All Over Short is our top pick for the absolute hottest days. They’re built as simple workout shorts, and the fabric is incredible for wicking sweat and drying. 

These could easily double as swim shorts, and we like that they have three inseam lengths available (standard 7”, long 9”, and short 5.5”).

What I Like

  • The All Over Short is simple—two pockets and no zippers.

  • There’s a nice variety of colors, inseams lengths, and sizes. 

  • Oliver’s proprietary fabric is excellent at wicking sweat, drying quickly, and not showing moisture. 

What I Don’t Like

  • Because there are no back pockets and no zippers, they’re not the most secure shorts. 

What Other Reviewers Say

Over 200 reviewers rate the All Over short a 4.9. There were many comparisons to Lululemon ABC shorts, with a lot of converts to Olivers. 

A lot of reviewers also appreciated the simplicity of the short. It’s a classic design without any frills.

The Verdict

We added the Olivers All Over Short because it’s our go-to for hard summer workouts when the sweat marks make you look like you’ve been sitting in a kiddie pool. 

They’re also a great choice if you’re heading near the water and don’t want to pack a swimsuit. The fabric is thick and dries quickly, so tie that drawstring tight and jump into the waves.

Olivers All Over Short

The Olivers All Over Short is one of our favorite workout shorts on the market. They're soft, stretchy, and hide sweat well. And the silhouette is modern enough to blend in when you're out running errands.

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5. Everlane Air Chino Short

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Everlane’s Air Chino Short is the most comfortable pair of chino shorts we’ve found. With a little added elastane and a super lightweight cotton blend fabric, these breezy beauties have a classic look while staying breathable.

What I Like

  • These have the timeless look of chino shorts. 

  • The lightweight cotton blend allows the breeze to come through.

  • Everlane offers a lot of colorways, sizes, and inseam lengths.

What I Don’t Like

  • Everlane runs small. If you’re even on the cusp of being between two sizes, get the next size larger. 

What Other Reviewers Say

The Air Chino averages a 4.71 with over 90 reviews. There are more than a few comments giving props to Everlane for how breezy the shorts are. 

A few folks mentioned that the leg opening was on the smaller-side. This is a more contemporary style, so it’s good to be aware of that. We think the narrow leg opening is more flattering for everyone.

The Verdict

Yes, the most comfortable shorts are usually made with technical fabrics. But what if you don’t want to wear something that looks like a workout short (even if it looks like a really nice workout short)? What if you just want that classic chino look?

Well then Everlane’s Air Chino is your best bet. 

While they’ve kept the same timeless style, the brand uses lightweight cotton to keep things cool. 

Everlane Air Chino Short

These look just like standard cotton chino shorts but with a little extra stretch in them for comfort. These slim fit shorts taper nicely and end above the knee.

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Do Comfortable Shorts Need to be Ugly?

If you thought you’d have to choose between comfort and style, you’re wrong. 

And to drive the point home, here are a few of our favorite styles featuring the shorts on our list. 

One of the simplest ways to make a pair of shorts look good is to dress up your shirt a little. You don’t have to do anything drastic, but a simple polo elevates your style.

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As you can see, the ADED shorts are paired with a contrasting solid polo and the look really pops.

If you have sick tattoos and a raging six-pack, you can pair your shorts with literally nothing else and look fantastic, too. So, you know, keep that in the back of your mind for outfit inspo. 

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Comfortable shorts like the ones on our list are easy to snazz up a bit. Focus on nice accessories and it’ll look like you put more emphasis on style than comfort (though we both know the truth). 

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A nice pair of sneakers and a killer watch will do the trick. 

There’s No Tradeoff

Maybe you came here expecting to find a list of super comfortable shorts that should never see the light of day. 

But now that you know a comfortable short can look so stylish, how can you go back to anything else?

Our favorite comfortable shorts come from Public Rec. The All Day Every Day Short offers the best balance between softness, slim design, and security in the pockets and drawstring. 

Public Rec All Day Every Day Short

It's hard to get more comfortable than Public Rec's All Day Every Day fabric. The drawstring and uber-stretchy fabric make this comfortable enough for a backyard barbecue, but stylish enough for a trip into the city.

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For super soft workout shorts that can do double duty running errands or going to the beach, check out Vuori and Olivers

If you’re planning on getting into some extreme summer adventures, DUER’s performance denim shorts offer the most protection and durability while remaining soft to the touch. 

And if you just want the classic chino look but know there are more comfortable alternatives, your search ends with the Everlane Air Chino short

So which is it for you?

FAQs

What type of shorts are in style in 2020?

Slimmer fit shorts with a 7” inseam are very popular now—especially shorts with technical fabrics like the Public Rec All Day Every Day Short.

Why are guys wearing short shorts?

The trend in 2020 is toward the more classic 7” inseam look. However, many guys are wearing even shorter inseam lengths like 5”. This is even more common among weightlifters who want to show off the work they’ve been putting in on their thighs.

Are 7” shorts too short?

7” shorts will fall above the knee, but they’re a safe length. This look is flattering for most guys and age appropriate for guys 24 and older. If you’ve always worn your shorts below your knee, perhaps try a 9” short to get used to the idea of shorts falling at or above your knee.