I’m a dude and I’m trying to look good (sexy). I’m slowly getting slimmer and I feel pretty confident shopping for shirts now that I know where the shoulder-seam should be, but I don’t even know where to start when shopping for pants. My best guess is to watch a bunch of Kpop videos and pay attention to what the boy-bands look like in pants. Anyone have tips on how to start?
This answer sucks, but it depends on what you’re looking for! But once you know your size there are two things you should concern yourself with pant cut and pant fit. If you want to keep it easy, start with slim fit, tapered cut and see how you like it and adjust from there.
The other important thing is what types of pants. Do you want jeans? Chinos? Leather pants? A nice pair of jeans will look good on almost anyone.
As for myself, I generally wear classic fit straight cut chinos, and don’t own a single pair of jean. I wouldn’t say they look amazing, but they’re generally appropriate for any setting and look good with anything, i can get them in tons of fun colors, and the fit is comfy. I’m probably looking to get more slim cut, tapered fit chinos in the future as I want more pants that hug my body more.
If you’re looking for the “boy band” look, you definitely want “slim fit” or “skinny” jeans. Slim is generally looser than skinny, although it varies a lot between brands. Avoid “straight” and “boot cut” jeans. “Tapered” is a more ambiguous term, but it’s generally looser than “slim”.
I’m a big fan of Levi’s 511 jeans. I’m pretty skinny, but they make my ass look good without being super skin-tight. Most of them have 99% cotton, 1% elastene fabric, which means they stretch slightly more than most jeans. So despite the slim fit, you can still walk a couple miles in the city, dance at a party, vault over fences, etc.
Be aware that Levi’s jeans vary a lot depending on which retailer you buy from. Amazon, Wal-Mart, and other lower-end retailers stock the “Levi’s signature” line, which tends to have lower-quality construction and inconsistent quality control. Target has “Levi’s Denizen”, which is similar. Jeans at mid/high-end stores like Macy’s, Nordstrom, and Levi’s Store are the “main” line, which tend to be sturdier, more consistent, and fit better (for me, at least). I particularly like their “Commuter” jeans, which have tougher stitching and a reinforced crotch so they last a lot longer. But they’re more expensive, so I mostly buy them on clearance. Note that all of these variants will still be labeled “Levi’s 511”, and it can be hard to tell them apart, especially online. On top of that, even the higher-end versions can still occasionally have defects and inconsistent sizing. To play it safe, just try them on before you spend $60 on a pair of jeans!
Also, Levi’s are absurdly expensive outside the US. If you’re not in the US, probably half of the advice in my post is gonna be useless to you
Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack are generally where I buy Levi’s. American Eagle and Uniqlo have their own lines of jeans that are also pretty good.
Best way to find pants that fit comfortably and look good is just to try on a lot of different pants until you find one that you like.
Don’t be afraid to experiment with colors. You probably don’t need 5 pairs of dark blue jeans. Try black, gray, white, green, brown, red, orange, etc.
You can fall really deep into the jeans rabbit hole. There’s entire forums and subreddits dedicated solely to discussing jeans. Be careful, or you might soon find yourself dropping $500 for bespoke Japanese selvedge raw denim.
I got you, my guy.
Head on over to Goodwill. Scope the (probably) vast selection and find a pair of jeans that just screams “you.” Take those jeans home and immediately cut them 3/4 of the way up the leg. Voila, you have yourself a brand-new spanking pair of jorts just in time for summer.
Seconding @BluShine on the 511 recommendation, my personal favorite. They’re like 70 bucks where I usually get them but I’ve never had a pair rip, and the color fades real slow if you’re careful about washing them inside-out. They often fit just a little bit on the skinnier side which is cool with me. I like to have a nice-fitting pair of dark-wash blue jeans, black jeans, and a couple different color chinos (green, brown, dark red, etc.) to mix it up. ASOS has a good selection of slim chinos (they’re not playing around when they say the skinny type are skinny so be warned) and they’re like 30 bucks or so.
Also side note I’m big on cuffing pants since I think it just gives off a neater, kempt sort of vibe so I don’t mind if they’re a little long, but that’s just me. I wear a lot of like desert boots and stuff which I think look weird with pants just spilling over them loosely. Also if you can, go to an outlet store like and H&M or Zara or something before you get super into ordering from them online, saves you the hassle of trial and error trying on their pants and sending them back over and over. Remember not to suffer too much for fashion either, if you’re not into how they feel but you like how they look it might not be a great idea to jus deal with it and keep them. Life’s too short to have your thighs chafed and your crotch crushed by ill fitting pants
As someone that went through this learning process a few years ago:
As people have mentioned, fit and cut are important. You might want to go to a couple stores and try each type of fit. Probably no way around it. Different brands fit differently, so you’ll have to look around (especially if your fit is a bit weird compared to the general public). Once I found what worked for me, I stuck to the couple brands and fits.
Think about you budget. Levi jeans and Gap chinos are good starting points, and you can move up or down depending on the budget. Never buy anything at full price (at least in the US), things are bound to go on sale (pretty often for the common brands), especially online (check if they offer free returns)
Then you start matching pants to shoes/boots and shirts/jackets, etc.
Thanks for the tips y’all have given so far.
In addition to this foundational knowledge, I am starting to need images of dudes that look good in pants. I just watched a plethora of Kpop videos of boy-bands and the pants were not a feature I was excited about. I’m realizing that I don’t even know what dudes looking good in pants even looks like. At best, pants on dudes look like not-a-problem.
If there aren’t other acceptable answers then I’m gonna have to just start my own thing.
Hey, I got no pictures, but the thing is… starting your own thing isn’t a bad idea? Basing your look off someone else is a fine place to start, but it can be misleading.
But in general, chinos and dress pants shouldn’t stick to the body, but not be baggy either, jeans can hug the body a bit more, or be a bit baggier. This guide is pretty good at laying it out. Though the best thing you can do, if possible is at first to have someone to consult with while trying on clothes.
The men’s fashion advice subreddit has some other good advice (go figure) on this stuff too, but I wouldn’t take their word as scripture unless you’re completely lost with what looks good.
The most difficult part of any fashion is being honest about your body, in a positive sense, and understanding what sort of looks play to your strengths. This is something that I struggle with a whole bunch. I haven’t always had a positive image of how I look and my body and I still don’t if I’m being honest. But through both self examination and the help of some really patient friends I’ve been able to kinda figure out what fits, colors, and styles look great for my body and what looks aren’t as flattering. And having clothes that fit and feel good does wonders for one’s self body image (and supposedly makes you look great too).
Wasn’t expecting to go full therapy session in a thread about pants, but here we are I guess.
I just think some well fitting chinos look really good, good mix of casual and classy, and very comfortable to wear. It’s pretty much all I personally go with, but you need to find something that you think fit you and your body type well.
I find my best luck just going out and trying on pants, put on a nice everyday shirt or sweater to contrast it with and go from there.
(example of chinos looking good on a person, courtesy of H&M)
Live your truest life, don’t wear pants. And don’t tell your lawyer it was my idea I have too much heat on me already
jump out nearest window
men’s trousers are in an exciting place at the moment! and i fully realise that sentence is ridiculous! but i stand by it!
we’re in a bit of a transition period where a lot of streetwear / high fashion looks are moving away from skinny cuts and towards wider fits. here’s a really good article writing up the trend with lots of inspo pics. i’m still playing around with this - as a guy with a Bit Of A Tummy, loose-fit things are careful territory because sometimes i just look sloppy or thoughtless when i wear them. the trick is to take a couple steps (rolling them, wearing a tucked in tee or a specific belt) which clearly state that this was a decision rather than an accident.
given you’ve said you’re just entering Men’s Fashion World, my advice would be get three pairs of slim / skinny jeans (black / indigo / grey) which fit nicely on the hips and then roll the bottoms up to show a little ankle. make sure you pair them with a nice pair of sneakers + socks, probably in white - the go-tos for a couple years now have been white Stan Smiths / reebok club Cs / nike af1 lows - or ankle boots and you’ve got an incredibly versatile bottom half for literally any outfit.
so to summarise:
- flexible mainstream trend, looks good on anyone: slim/skinny/tapered jeans rolled higher on the ankle with nice white trainers or boots
- slightly more fashion forward: ankle cut chinos, straight fit, paired with clumpy low-top smart shoe like a doc marten low 1461
- stand out in the crowd: thrift a pair of wide-fit formal pants, ideally with an interesting texture to them, and roll them up to make it clear you’re Doing Something Here. pair with other loose items and prepare to experiment.
I’m not a huge fan of H&M’s cut for chinos. I much prefer Uniqlo’s.
Honestly OP, you can’t go wrong with a pair of chinos (rolled up slightly at the ankles) paired with some low-tops or ankle boots.
Skinny jeans don’t suit everyone, so YMMV, and the most important thing is that pants fit you well and complement your figure.
If you got a UNIQLO near you I recommend you check out what they have. Their slim fit is real good and I bought a pair last year and they’re my favorite pair of pants ever. I use them for pretty much every outside situation that isn’t extremely formal and they work pretty great.
I don’t have much better advice to share other than try a load of them before buying. Skinny’s kinda hard to pull off (But I’m a doughy dude so take that for what it’s worth), and slim fit might be more up your alley but again, try A LOT of pants and find the one that you really feel good in.
I will say having a pair of pants you know you can rock is real fun because your brain opens up to what other clothes you can match with it and I’ve begun to experiment a little more with clothes over the past year because of it.
My go to is Cubus but idk if they’re international or not. I just needed a quick pic.
Stretchy slim fits are pretty much the optimal route of comfort and look.
The only thing I know about men’s pants fashion is that pleats = bad. Although I’m still holding on to all my pants from 20 years ago for when that eventually turns back around.
If you’re just looking for images, here’s some inspiration albums from reddit black jeans, faded jeans. Those are from the MaleFashionAdvice and Streetwear subreddits. Search for “inspo album” in those two subreddits and you can find a lot of pics. Most male fashion outfits involve pants, so you shouldn’t have any shortage of pants pics.
Anyways, here’s some of my favorite looks from those albums and others:
If you’re in the market for shorts (and you should be! they’re stylish and practical in the warmer months) just keep in mind that they should fall above the knee, not below. I feel very strongly about this.
As everyone else has pointed out, a few good pairs of skinny/slim jeans are essential. I used to like 511s a lot, but the last few pairs I bought have been a little looser than I’d like. I have trouble with jeans sometimes because my preferred cut is somewhere between skinny and slim, depending on the brand, and my thighs are on the thicc side. My favorite pair right now is a pair of slim cut jeans from H&M, which are good for general use. I also have some stretch slim jeans from Topman which I like for the rare occasion when I go to a club or bar; they’re actually pretty comfortable, but they’re too tight for everyday use.