Sweatpants Guide: The Ins and Outs of Wearing Joggers
9 Different Joggers and How to Wear Them
The AskMen editorial team thoroughly researches & reviews the best gear, services and staples for life. AskMen may get paid if you click a link in this article and buy a product or service.
We are truly living in a golden age of athleisure. Between omnipotent powerhouses such as Nike, Lululemon and adidas and higher-fashion brands such as Fear of God coming into prominence over the last several years, it’s never been more appropriate to wear a nice sweatshirt out on a date or yoga pants to work.
At the center of it all this comfy clothing commotion is the jogger — a modern update on your classic sweatpants that can work just as well on the runway as it does on the couch. These days your wardrobe isn’t complete without at least one pair.
RELATED: Best Jogging Pants for Men
That said, they aren’t a staple in the same way that well-cut navy blazers or blue jeans are. You can’t wear joggers everywhere or all the time. But if you know when to break them out, they’re a great way to make an outfit look modern or to prioritize comfort without sacrificing style.
Joggers vs. Sweatpants
It’s first crucial to note that joggers and sweatpants are not different names for the same type of pants. Understanding the difference between the two is the difference between looking fresh and looking like a freshman.
Whereas sweatpants are often evenly cut and border on shapeless, joggers are a more tailored take on your classic loungewear staple. Generally made of soft cotton and poly blends (classic sweatpants are often made of a thicker cotton), they tend to start with a slightly wider leg towards the thigh and go slimmer as they hit the knee and calf — similar to other traditional pants.
Some take the slimming to an extreme, with super tight calves or thighs that balloon out slightly —- if you think you can pull these off, go for it, but if you have any doubt, just stick with one of the more modest cuts.
How to Wear Joggers
The good news about joggers is that, unlike sweatpants, there are quite a few ways to dress them up. Joggers are acceptable to wear to bars, restaurants or even on dates and still look like you’ve put a good bit of effort into your outfit (provided, you know, you actually do).
Perhaps it’s best to focus on where you shouldn’t wear them. The ceiling on joggers is business casual. Unless you work in a particularly lax office, they’re not the most professional style pants to choose.
Similarly, it’s hard to make joggers work in a formal environment. Whether it’s meeting your significant other’s parents for the first time (don’t), a high-end restaurant (just don’t) or a job interview (definitely don’t), that may be the time to leave the joggers at home and pick out a nice pair of jeans or chinos.
Beyond those parameters, the jogger has become a pretty versatile wardrobe staple. Yeah, you can just lounge around wearing them with an old T-shirt, but with the right wardrobe combination you can also make them work later that night when you hit the bar with your friends.
Assuming the joggers are outside-appropriate, swap out your slippers for a cool, clean pair of sneakers and throw on a henley or tee that fits your form well and you’ll look just as good as the guy in a collared shirt and jeans. Similarly, you can double down on the athleisure look and pair it with a nice, well-fitted hoodie or crew neck sweater or sweatshirt. If you go this route, make sure the colors complement each other well or match (which will create a uniformity similar to that of a tracksuit).
There’s also the option to go with cotton twill joggers instead of cotton and fleece. Twill joggers are made from fabric akin to your favorite pair of chinos, though they still tend to come with elastic waistbands and ankles. If you go this route, joggers can be dressed up even more, perhaps creating outfits suitable for office-wear. You can wear them with non-athletic sweaters, striped tees or button-downs and look as professional as most offices today require, all while enjoying the untouchable comfort joggers have to offer.
Twill can also be just as easily paired with the aforementioned casual looks. It goes great with fitted tees and cushy hoodies alike and complements a great pair of sneakers incredibly well. Picking between cotton fleece and twill joggers is really just a question of whether you prefer versatility over comfort or vice versa.
Even if athleisure’s time in the spotlight comes to pass, joggers aren’t going anywhere any time soon. Over the last few years they’ve proven themselves not a fad but rather a modern wardrobe essential. Fashion is constantly a choice between comfort and aesthetics. Joggers merge the two, providing a cozy fit that looks as good as it feels. Your wardrobe isn’t complete without a pair.
With that all being said, if you don’t have at least one pair already in your possession or you’re looking to build out your jogger reserve, these are the 9 best styles we suggest to get you started or keep you going.
Best Joggers for Men
Italic Cashmere Jogger Pants
From the same manufacturer as the undoubtedly more expensive Sandro and Maje, these cozy cashmere joggers from Italic may not be the best option for the office, but trust us when we say, you’ll have everyone jealous on those weekend errands and low key Sunday brunches.
$150 at Italic.com
Abercrombie & Fitch Twill Joggers
This khaki twill jogger from Abercrombie embodies what the modern day jogger should be — comfortable, casual and contemporary.
$78 at Abercrombie.com
Belted Jogger with GapFlex
Somehow achieving both a minimal and utilitarian aesthetic, this streamlined jogger from Gap has a slight bit of flexibility allowing for easy, comfortable movement and standout style.
$50 at Gap.com
Mack Weldon Radius Pant
Mack Weldon started out by making underwear — the most important part of the outfit as far as comfort is concerned. So, it is no surprise that everything the brand offers you to put on after is designed for optimal comfort as well. These pants are no exception, making them perfect for bike commutes, travel days, and well, just about anything requiring pants.
$98 at MackWeldon.com
Rhone Guru Pant
The only elastic you’ll find on these joggers from Rhone is at the waist — which is without a doubt where you need it most. Lacking any ankle ruching, this pant is perfect for those who want to have a more traditional looking hem, but the cozyness of sweats.
$98 at Rhone.com
Uniqlo EZY Jogger Pants
On the flip side, you’d fool us into thinking these joggers were your traditional chino if it wasn’t for the scrunchable ankle. Traditional in every way, these pants throw just a subtle suggestion of jogger while still playing by all the corporate casual rules.
$14.90 at Uniqlo.com
Goodthreads Slim Fit Jogger
If you’re a jogger-aholic and really like buying a style in bulk, these from Goodthreads are the way to go. Available in every essential color a man could own, the price is right to stock up.
From $12 at Amazon.com
H&M Slim Fit Joggers
These are for the guy who really really wants to push the boundaries of where you thought joggers could go. If you need to give your best impression, but there may be a lot of food involved, something like these dress trouser-inspired joggers from H&M are a must.
$39.99 at HM.com
Nicestuff Clothing Knit Stretch Pant
If you are really finding it difficult to break away from trousers at all, start by investing in a pair of gateway pants that could easily fall under the “jogger” drop down menu. These pants are made of a knit performance fabric that come with the subtle detailing that make them perfect for any occasion calling for nothing short of a dress pant.
$145 at NicestuffClothing.com
Now, more than ever, joggers are simply being considered another good, stylish option for guys who wear pants. If that’s you — and we bet it is — and you don’t own a pair of joggers yet, hopefully now you’re on board.
You Might Also Dig:
- How to Get Away With Sweatpants at Work
- The Death of the Jogger
- How to Wear Athleisure
AskMen may get paid if you click a link in this article and buy a product or service. To find out more, please read our complete
This post was syndicated from askmen.com