Even as contemporary office attire gets less and less formal, men still need dress pants in their closets. In fact, it’s more important to have the perfect pair in this era of casualization. While trousers of yesteryear were reserved for specific places, the best athletic fit men’s dress pants in 2022 need to be as versatile as a deep-lying midfielder.
They should be comfortable enough to wear for hours on end, formal-looking enough for impromptu client meetings (no drawstring waistbands!), and well-built for maximum mileage. These are things even your best khakis simply can’t do. It’s a tall order. Fortunately, the five entries here effectively fit the bill.
How to Best Style Athletic Fitting Dress Pants
A good pair of athletic fit dress pants goes well with any collared shirt: Herringbone dress shirts and leather oxfords for formal occasions, a knit polo and loafers for smart casual situations, and even a camp collar shirt and low-profile leather sneakers for a relaxed resort look. Menswear neutrals, like shades of gray and olive, are the most versatile.
What Are the Best Athletic Fit Dress Pants for Men to Try in 2022?
From style to performance, here are the five best athletic fitting dress pants for men with big thighs on the market right now, starting with our number one pick from State & Liberty.
Top Key Features: Flattering tapered athletic fit in several colors, durable four-way stretch construction, wrinkle-resistant, machine washable
Returns: Will accept any return that is unworn and resellable, within 90 days of purchase
What’s Good About State & Liberty:
While countless pants on the market claim to combine professional style with performance-level comfort, State & Liberty’s stretch suit pants are the only ones to really deliver—at least, they’re the only ones who do it as well as they do.
State & Liberty’s brand focus is on sporty body types, so their pants give more room in the seat and thighs before tapering down to the hem. Still, the pant legs are flawlessly streamlined, offering surprising versatility. It’s a pretty unique fit.
Plus, you can literally sprint to work in these without tearing a hem. In addition to rayon and nylon, their construction boasts polyester for added durability, and a spandex performance blend, providing an intense four-way stretch pant material.
These suit trousers, without exaggeration, allow the mobility and breathability of athletic pants. They’re also wrinkle-resistant and conveniently machine washable, which saves you time (no need to iron) and money (no need for drycleaning).
What’s Not So Good:
State & Liberty has excellent customer service that connects you to real people, which is a rarity these days. The downside here is that their line is only open during regular business hours, EST.
State & Liberty’s Stretch Suit Pants are classic and professional. The innovative tapered fit serves up a look that’s less textbook and more distinguished. They come in several colors including navy, gray, maroon, and some heathered hues.
The clever construction provides an impressive range of motion, making them one of the best dress pants for work out there, and definitely the best athletic fit dress pants for men with big thighs who are looking for a flattering slim fit.
Top that off with the easy-maintenance factor, and all the boxes are checked.
2. Hugo Boss Slim Fit Trousers
Maker: Hugo Boss
Top Key Features: Machine washable, slimming fit, comfortable material blend, and multiple color options
Returns: Will accept returns for online purchases up to 60 days after delivery so long as they are new, unworn, and unwashed.
What’s Good About Hugo Boss Slim Fit Trousers:
Hugo Boss is one of the most memorable mens fashion brands. Their heritage, experience, and reliability make them a go to for many men.
The trousers featured here do not deviate from their heritage. Offering multiple colors and a slim fit appearance everyone is sure to find a pair that works for their style. If you cant however, their return policy is solid so you have no need to fret.
These pants are machine washable and are the perfect weekend or business casual attire that is sure to wow your audience.
What’s Not So Good:
There are no pure materials in these pants although they are mostly cotton you also have polyamide, elastane, and polyester. Although this makes them machine washable they will feel less luxurious as others included on this list. They also are not able to be paired with a suit jacket, as they are more casual, if that is what you are in the market for.
Hugo Boss is a hard brand to go wrong with and these pants are perfect for the man who is looking for a slim fit weekend chino. However more luxurious, comfortable, and business formal options can be found elsewhere. These also are more of a slim fit and not ideal for athletes or men with muscular body types.
3. Brooks Brothers BrooksFlex Mini-Houndstooth Wool Trousers, Regent-Fit
Maker: Brooks Brothers
Top Key Features: Fine Merino wool construction, features sustainable materials, traditional houndstooth aesthetic, free alterations
Returns: Will accept any returns in its original condition within 60 days of purchase, accompanied by an original receipt
What’s Good About Brooks Brothers Mini-Houndstooth Wool Trousers:
Brooks Brothers’ BrooksFlex line takes traditional dress pants and infuses them with some stretch for extra mobility. Of this collection, the Mini-Houndstooth Wool Trousers, with their subtle broken-check weave and slight sheen, are as uptown as it gets. Appropriately, they only come in understated navy and tan.
These dress pants are made out of traditional Italian Merino wool, with some elastomer. Notably, Brooks sustainably sources their elastomer, lessening environmental impact.
The brand’s Regent Fit is a staple in the old New York scene. It’s fitted through the hip with a subtle yet sharp taper through the thigh and into the hem. This look combines the soft tailoring of American-cut pants with the structured form of an English cut. Plus, Brooks famously offers free alterations.
What’s Not So Good:
While these trousers are stretchier than the average dress pants, I wouldn’t call them a true hybrid. They’re slightly more comfortable for a tailored slim fit, but lack the versatility of four-way stretch material seen elsewhere.
Ever trend-resistant, these Brooks Brothers Wool Trousers are timeless dress pants, with their mini-houndstooth design and neutral colorways. The Regent Fit is a unique cut that combines best practices from more traditional fits, while the sustainable elastomer makes them more comfortable than their non-BrooksFlex counterparts.
4. Bonobos Weekday Warrior Dress Pants
Top Key Features: Easy-care cotton construction, a wide range of fits, sizes, and neutral colors
Returns: Will accept returns of unwashed and unworn items within 45 days of purchase for a refund, and within 90 days for store credit
What’s Good About Bonobos Weekday Warrior Dress Pants:
The Bonobos Weekday Warrior Dress Pants aren’t just impressively bang-for-buck at their $119 price tag, but are designed to make choosing work clothes easier.
With colorways like “Monday True Blue” and “Wednesday Gray Dobby”, and the respective day of the week embroidered inside the waistband, this collection of pants is like the meal prep of fashion.
They’re made with 3% elastane which provides good stretch and easy maneuverability, and are fully machine washable. There are also plenty of size and fit options. The straight-cut is a classic fit that complements sturdier body types, while the slim taper fit is for lanky gents. At this price point, the Weekday Warriors are definitely one of the best dress pants for tall men.
What’s Not So Good:
These pants are much lower quality than some of the others on this list. They wrinkle easily and aren’t that easy to iron for those that need to be active and fashionable. This will prove to be a difficulty not experienced when shopping with other athletic dress pant brands. Also, the black dress pants are more of a charcoal, which is fine if they weren’t described differently.
The Bonobos Weekday Warrior Dress Pants is a cheaper option but I’d recommend spending the extra $10 and getting a premium pair of athletic fitting stretch dress pants from State & Liberty.
5. Ted Baker London Slim Fit Trousers
Maker: Ted Baker
Top Key Features: artisanal construction with a 100% wool shell, fortified with 100% polyester lining for durability, versatile and modern slim fit
Returns: Will accept returns 28 days after online purchases and 14 days after in store purchases.
What’s Good About Ted Baker London Slim Fit Trousers:
Beginning in 1987 Ted Baker London is one of the fastest growing brands today. Their iconic fit paired with high quality construction sets them apart from the competition. True to their name their clothes have a distinctly European “slim” fit.
With a 100% wool outer and a 100% polyester lining these pants manage to be breathable, flexible, and classy without sacrificing looks or quality.
Maybe the best aspect of Ted Baker is that they are able to offer all this without absolutely breaking the bank at $265.
What’s Not So Good:
Ted Baker is a modern fashion brand and as such they seem to focus on having a smaller selection of high quality products. This can make it difficult to find odd colors and limits your selection. They are also dry clean only which could prove a hassle for those wearing them often.
Ted Baker is a very recognizable brand and you are sure to get high quality pants with 100% authentic materials. However their limited options and restriction to dry clean only means you will need to ensure they are the right pants for you before purchasing. Plus, you can get two pairs of my favorite brand, State & Liberty, for the price of one pair of Ted Baker Slim Fit Trousers.
Questions About Men’s Athletic Fit Dress Pants
What is the best material for men’s athletic fit dress pants?
Traditional dress pants are typically made of wool, polyester, and/or synthetic blends. Athletic fit dress pants typically use a mix of nylon, cotton, and spandex. This allows for the stretch needed to accommodate all professional and formal situations.
What type of events/occasions are appropriate for athletic fit dress pants?
They’re appropriate for smart casual dress codes like casual Friday at the office, more formal occasions like weddings, and everything in between. When wearing athletic fit dress pants in more relaxed contexts, pair them with casual shirts and shoes, like polos and slip-ons.
How do I take care of men’s athletic fit dress pants?
Traditional dress pants are often dry clean only. Athletic fit dress pants from modern-day brands offer no-fuss, wrinkle-resistant trousers that are machine-washable.
Where is the best place to buy men’s athletic fit dress pants?
While getting your trousers custom-made at a tailor or seamstress yields the best and most personal results, a lot of brands offer quality dress pants at much lower prices. Which brand to turn to depends on your priorities. State & Liberty is our top pick because of their unique fits and perfect balance of performance and style.
How do you wear athletic fit dress pants to a wedding?
Wearing flexible, athletic, and stretchy pants to a wedding can be a great way to remain comfortable while also looking stylish. Be sure to pair them with a nice suit jacket and collared shirt. Be sure to match with the theme and style of the wedding and feel free to take your jacket off and put those stretch dress pants to work on the dance floor for the reception.
Where can you wear athletic athletic fitting dress pants?
Although they are a more modern cut, the job of the athletic fit dress pants is to give a more tapered look without sacrificing the classy aesthetic given from formal attire. As such athletic fit dress pants are acceptable to wear anywhere you would normally wear classic dress pants.
What is the difference between dress pants and khakis?
Dress pants are more formal, made from a variety of different materials. Khakis are typically made with a thick cotton twill, often have a looser cut than dress pants, and come only in shades of light yellowish-brown and tan.
How long should men’s dress pants be?
Dress pants should only have one break, or slight fold, max. More modern fits often feature no breaks, flat fronts, and a smooth uninterrupted silhouette.
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.