Discover the best options for khakis and chinos for men from affordable cotton pants to comfortable workleisure slacks.
The Short Answer: The 10 Best Options for Chino Pants for Men
Before getting into this deep-dive post, here are my absolute favorite options for men’s chinos and khaki pants:
For my money, J. Crew is one of the best destinations for chinos for men. They offer a remarkably large selection of fits, colors and styles that includes everything from formal dress chinos to smart casual five-pocket pants. My favorites are J. Crew’s 484 slim fit stretch chino pants, which are perfect for the office.
Bonobos has a well-deserved reputation for quality, well-fitting chinos. The menswear startup carries an excellent variety of fits and styles and an unparalleled selection of colors. Look to Bonobos’ Weekday Warriors and premium Italian Chinos for dress chino pants and their Original Stretch Washed Chinos for everyday quality that are appropriate for work.
Mizzen and Main is another excellent, and more affordable option for workleisure chinos made from technical fabrics.
Woodies makes buying custom business casual clothing easy, and their performance chinos are a great option for a made-to-measure fit.
Indochino has expanded from its excellent made-to-measure suits to also include custom 100% cotton chinos. If you live near an Indochino showroom, you can get measured up in person and feel the fabrics for your new custom-made chino pants.
You can take advantage of Nordstrom’s free shipping and returns and stellar customer service to discover an extensive range of chino pants from brands like Bonobos, rag and bone, Treasure and Bond, Volcom, Ted Baker London, AG, NN07, Tommy Bahama, Carhartt, Rolla’s, Devil Dog Dungarees, Theory, Brax, Wythe, Rodd and Gunn, Mavi Jeans, Vans, Vineyard Vines, KATO, Paige, Alton Lane, Reiss, Cutter and Buck, BP, Berle, Maceoo, RVCA, JACHS, Levi’s, River Island and Barbour. Also look to Nordstrom for workleisure options from Mizzen and Main and its house label Zella as well as high-end chinos from luxury fashion designers including Canali and Givenchy.
Huckberry is one of the best online stores to shop for stylish men’s men’s clothing and one one of my favorite places to discover new menswear brands. Look to Huckberry for traditional chino pants for men from labels including Jack Donnelly, Wythe New York, Alex Mill and smart casual five-pocket pants from their house brand Flint and Tinder. You can also find modern athleisure takes like flyweight flex chinos from Relwen, canvas work pants by Rover and drawstring-tied easy chinos from Wellen. (For more, see my Huckberry review and interview with Co-Founder Richard Greiner.)
What are Chino Pants?
Chino pants have come to be known commonly as a generic style of business casual pants for men or women characterized by a cotton blend or cotton-like twill weave. Chinos are less formal than dress slacks and less casual than denim, sweatpants and joggers.
Historically, “chinos” referred to pants made from a specific type of dyed cotton fabric that was woven into a patterned twill. Today, however, companies call a wide variety of pants “chinos,” including new workleisure trousers that are made from materials like polyester, nylon, and elastane.
Why are Chino Pants Known As Chinos?
The word chinos is a corrupted form the Spanish word for Chinese. American soldiers popularized the use of the word chinos to describe the pants they received from China around the turn of the 20th Century.
What is the Difference Between Chinos vs. Khakis?
Technically, khaki refers to a specific medium-brown color of pants. (Khaki means dusty in Urdu.) However, the word khakis has come to refer generically to business casual trousers and is often used interchangeably with the word chinos.
Price Comparison: The Cheapest Chinos for Men
The chart below compares prices for men’s chino pants and khakis from a range of stylish clothing brands. (You can click through the links in the chart to browse and purchase the chinos directly.)
The cheapest chinos for men may not necessarily be the best value, however. Below the chart, I dive into a number of the brands in more detail. The stylish alternatives to Brooks Brothers below range from truly cheap khakis to the best “affordable luxury” chinos.
The Best Chinos and Khakis Under $100
Chinos and khakis in the $60-100 range tend to be the “goldilocks” of pants. They’re not to cheap to have to make compromises on fit or fabric, and not so expensive that you’re paying for a luxury label.
While I have spent a lot of time searching for alternatives to J. Crew, the company makes some of the absolute best chinos for men. The silhouette of their trousers is sleek and their chinos are professional enough to be worn to the office.
Their chinos come in a wide variety of fits including skinny, slim, straight, athletic, relaxed and drawstring, Plus J. Crew experiments with a nice variety of seasonal colors and fabrics, giving you even more variety.
My favorite J. Crew chinos are the their best selling 484 slim fit stretch chino pants, which cost $79.50. (Unfortunately those are regularly excluded from J. Crew’s frequent sales.)
“There’s a lot of — for lack of a better word — lying in the retail industry,” Everlane co-founder Michael Preysman suggests. “You don’t know where things are made or how they’re made or what the actual costs are.” And in 2010, Preysman, along with co-founder Jesse Farmer, set out to change that.
Through ethical factories and a notion of “radical transparency,” Everlane provides high-quality, conscientiously made garments at reasonable prices. The San Francisco-based company offers a breakdown for the true cost of each item, as well as information about the specific factory where the item was made.
Everlane’s Slim Fit Performance Chinos are made from a 94% Cotton and 6% Elastane stretch fabric that wicks sweat and dries quickly.
In my book, these performance chinos are one of the best combinations of fit, style, quality and price, making them an exceptional value for money. These performance chinos are part of Everlane’s Uniform Collection, a group of essential wardrobe basics backed by a 365-day guarantee.
Everlane’s Performance Chinos cost $72.
Andy Dunn and Brian Spaly founded Bonobos in 2007 in order to compensate for the lack of good-fitting pants. The two spent countless hours in an attempt to perfect the way mens’ pants were designed. Their solution that took the internet by storm rests in the design of their signature waistband.
The company, since acquired by Walmart, currently hails as the largest U.S. clothing brand to get started as a born-online e-commerce shop. They also sport about 50 Guideshop locations around the United States, including several in the Washington, DC area — like this one in Shaw.
I have to admit that it took me a long time to come around to the value of Bonobos. When I first tried on their chinos, while visiting Bonobos’ then-temporary pop up guideshop in Bethesda, I wasn’t sold on their fits. Their classic fit felt too baggy and I just couldn’t nail the fit in their slim or tailored versions.
I have since come around. After visiting two more Guideshops to get a better feel for how their chinos fit, and ordering a slew of chinos to try on at home, I kept a pair of summer-appropriate light blue chinos, and have since bought a couple of other pairs.
Be sure you look closely at the material composition though: Bonobos historically has made chinos with 100% cotton fibers, but as of this writing all I see are “stretch” chinos available, which is a blend of cotton and Lycra. I’ve also seen polyester in prior, now-no-longer-available offerings.
Finally, be sure to look at their return policy. I was super-excited to score a pair of stretch washed chinos in mulberry for under $30, but had to abide by their “final sale” policy that states that there are no returns or exchanges on certain purchases.
For a pair of chinos that are equal parts stylish and comfortable, check out Bonobo’s Stretch Washed Chinos. They’re made from a cotton-lycra blend and are available in tailored, slim, athletic and straight, as well as in a ton of classic and trendy colors. As of this writing, they are available on their website going for $48-$98.
Bonobos Stretch Washed Chinos cost $98 (and as low as $48 on sale).
For a bespoke look without a visit to a tailor, Taylor Stitch has you immaculately covered. Inspired by a desire for well-fitting, sophisticated clothes, Michael Armenta, Barrett Purdum, and Michael Maher created Taylor Stitch in a San Francisco apartment in 2008.
Bemoaning the “overbuilt” nature of other brands, Taylor Stitch aims to make clothes that fit simply and beautifully for all of life’s occasions. Implementing an innovative crowdsourcing platform for new collections they call The Workshop, Taylor Stitch is reducing waste by only producing what consumers want.
In their essentials line of products (available without crowd funding), the elegantly sleek Democratic Chinos stand out. Made in Spain with a durable 9.5 oz brushed twill, these pants have comfortable and tailored fit. With the unique detail of vintage San Francisco maps lining the pockets, these $98 slacks make a nice addition to your wardrobe.
Taylor Stitch’s Democratic Chinos cost $98.
Flint and Tinder by Huckberry
Huckberry was founded Andy Forch and Richard Greiner over a chairlift in Sqaw Valley in 2010 to create a brand for young men in the city like themselves that would serve as a mashup of store, magazine and inspiration to get outdoors. The company was born from 100% sweat equity from the duo and has proven to have built something made to last. The company snapped up fellow startup Flint and Tinder in 2016, a brand best known for made-in-American underwear and the “10 year hoodie,”
Made in a sustainable factory in Indonesia from a 98% cotton and spandex stretch blend, Flint and Tinder’s 365 Pants are available in slim, standard and tapered fits and are a stylish, stretchy, and comfortable pair of chinos for $98.
Flint and Tinder 365 Pants cost $98.
Frank and Oak
Socially conscious Canadian company Frank and Oak is creating thoughtfully designed clothing from sustainable materials.
Founded by friends Ethan Song and Hicham Ratnani in 2012, Frank and Oak hopes to provide an elegant yet comfortable wardrobe. Their And* campaign seeks to spread a message of inclusion, tearing down divisive walls and building up community. In addition to providing jobs for women in need, $5 of every And* purchase goes to Equitas, an organization which seeks to end poverty and injustice around the world. Frank and Oak also offers a monthly clothing subscription plan for the man too busy to shop.
Frank and Oak’s Brunswick Slim Fit Chinos fit slim in the legs and hips and are constructed from a stretchable twill fabric made from 98% recycled cotton and 2% spandex.
Frank and Oak’s Brunswick Slim Fit Chinos cost $89.50.
Tom Kay founded Finisterre back in 2003 as a British shop for surfers and sea lovers to buy specialized fleeces to protect against chilly winds. Today, the brand offers a range of stylish and sustainable apparel with functionality in mind for men and women. The headquarters are off the beaten path in St Agnes, Cornwall in the United Kingdom, but they have a shop in London and offer worldwide shipping from their website.
Finisterre’s Koerner Trousers (aka chinos)are a great pick if you’re looking for a classic style chino made of a soft, slightly-stretchy blend of 97% cotton and 3% spandex. They are made in China and are designed for comfort and durability. The Koerner chinos feature buttoned workwear style pockets for a more casual look.
Finisterre’s Koerner Trousers cost $95.
The Most Comfortable Workleisure Chino Pants for Men
During the pandemic, a number of companies sprang up to meld work-appropriate business casual looks with sweatpants-like comfort, creating a new apparel category known variously as workleisure or power casual.
- Ministry of Supply is an excellent example of a sustainable clothing brand, which specializes in performance professional and comfortable business casual clothing for men and women. Founded by a group of MIT grads back in 2011, Ministry of Supply has a large selection of comfortable workleisure chinos for men (and women) made from performance fabrics, which cost around $148. Take 15% off at Ministry of Supply with code MF15.
- Mizzen and Main is another excellent option for a range of comfortable workleisure clothing for men from performance dress shirts to khakis. The menswear startup offers a number of proprietary technical fabrics throughout its business casual clothing options like the stretchy and lightweight Leeward fabric, made of 85% Polyester and 15% Spandex. Try Mizzen and Main’s Baron Performance (Workleisure) Chinos, which come in trim fit and a roomier athletic fit. At $98, Mizzen and Main makes some of the more affordable performance chinos around.
- Bonobos, already referenced above, is worth mentioning here for their Stretch Washed Chinos 2.0. Bonobos mixes a heavy dose of 8% spandex into their cotton-blend chinos, which gives them a stretchy and comfortable workleisure vibe. Bonobos’ Washed Chinos 2.0 cost $98.
- Swet Tailor is a premium athleisure brand best known for joggers and loungewear. Their “All In Pants” are advertised as being appropriate for “Everyday. Everywear.” Made from Swet Tailor’s performance Suprese™ fabric (a blend of cotton and spandex), and sporting five-pocket jeans-like styling Swet Tailor’s pants definitely fall on the very casual side of workleisure.
For more details and options for workleisure chinos made from technical fabrics, check out my in-depth guide to performance fabrics and power casual clothing for men and women and separate post on athleisure alternatives to lululemon.
The Best Custom-Tailored Chinos for Men
For a more personal fit, look to these online custom clothing brands for made-to-measure chinos and khakis:
- Woodies Clothing: Jacob Wood makes perfect fitting clothing extremely easy to order via his stylish men’s online custom clothing brand Woodies. The company specializes in a terrific array of custom business casual clothing for men. Woodies’ Performance Chinos have stretch, are stain repelling, wrinkle-free, and look amazing with a button down oxford or polo shirt.
- Indochino, the Canadian menswear startup, is an excellent option for custom-tailored khakis and chinos as well as suits and blazers. If you live near to one of Indochino’s showrooms, you can pop in to get a feel for the fabrics and colors and get yourself measured for their colorful selection of custom-tailored chinos. At $79, their custom khakis won’t break the bank. Remarkably, Indochino is one of the few companies selling 100% cotton chinos. For more on the brand, see Modern Fellows’ interview with former CEO Kyle Vucko and review their traveling tailor’s visit to Washington, DC.
- Hockerty is a stylish Swiss-based custom clothing company that makes a wide range of made-to-measure clothing for men from affordable trench coats to suits. Their custom-tailored chinos come in a wide range of rich colors and start at $99. (I reviewed one of their extremely-affordable white dress shirts back when they were known as Tailor4Less.)
- Lanieri, an Italian online luxury made-to-measure service, has a remarkable breadth of custom chinos, slacks and joggers for men. Look for chinos with interesting textures from linen twill and stretch merino wood. If you’re based in Europe, you can also visit one of Lanieri’s atelier shops to get measured in person.
Where to Find the Cheapest Chinos and Khakis Under $50
There are several options for truly affordable chinos and khakis under $50, though at this price point you may have to make some compromises.
Goodthreads and Amazon Essentials
Amazon continues to expand its menswear offerings and now has two private labels that produce affordable chinos for men.
Amazon Essentials, the company’s entry line, has classic fit, wrinkle-resistant, flat front chino pants for just $20, though that price-point delivers 60% Cotton/40% Polyester clothing.
Goodthreads is the next step up in Amazon’s private label that the Seattle-based retailer advertises as a “go-to for wardrobe staples with the style you want.”
Goodthreads 5 pocket chino pants are 99% cotton twill with a hint of spandex and a “jean-inspired silhouette.” Amazon is appealing to J.Crew and Banana Republic enthusiasts with this line of pants.
Dickies has been producing workwear for men for 100 years. Founded in 1922, the company maintains a lineup of extremely affordable business casual khakis and workwear chinos.
Dickies’ original 874 pants clock in at under $30 and are made from a twill blend of 65% polyester and 35% cotton.
Goodfellow & Co from Target
I’ve been really impressed with the look of Target’s Goodfellow & Co line of menswear. I have had many more chances to look closely at the brand since they opened a small-footprint Target store in my Tenleytown neighborhood in Washington, DC.
Goodfellow and Co’s Hennepin straight-fit chino pants, a mix of 98% cotton and 2% spandex, look pretty sleek for under $25. They’re a relatively thicker material, which is good for the winter. I’ve tried them on and they just don’t fit quite right (they’re tight in the waist but baggy in the hips), but you might have better luck.
About JakeJake is an expert on men’s style and fashion based in Washington, DC. He founded Modern Fellows in 2012 to get to know the entrepreneurs and innovative clothing and lifestyle brands helping men dress sharp in the digital age. He has published hundreds of articles on style and apparel, and regularly interviews small business CEOs and startup founders about industry trends. Jake has written about entrepreneurship, international business and fashion for outlets including Business Week, Forbes, Inc., Details Style Syndicate and Primer Magazine.
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