The Best Chino Pants Will Help You Clean Up Nice, No Matter How Long It's Been

No matter how wild menswear gets, there's always room in your wardrobe for a great pair of chinos. GQ's Best Stuff is on the case.
A collage of the rock steve kornacki steph curry and david letterman all wearing different chinos
Photographs courtesy Getty Images; Collage by Gabe Conte

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Finding the best chino pants amid a sea of formless khakis can be a painful ordeal. Especially given what a crazy couple of years it's been for pants generally. Weirdness abounds. Swishy is king, pleats are back, dress pants are enormous, and it all can be a little overwhelming at times. Thing is, far-out trousers being in doesn’t mean that more earthbound bottoms are suddenly out. There’s plenty of room under the Golden Age of Pants umbrella for the classics, and it doesn’t get any more classic than some hardy, reliable chinos.

As far back as World War II, guys have turned to chinos for their functionality and versatility. There aren’t many types of pants, after all, that feel as at home covered in grease in a mechanic’s garage as they would at a garden party in Martha’s Vineyard. Chinos are the crème de la crème of casual pants, just the sort of bottoms to make you toss your joggers into the back of your closet and consider (gasp!) swearing off sweatpants for good. You can wear them with a beefy oxford cloth button-down and slip-ons at home, a crisp white t-shirt and scuffed sneakers to the bodega, or a blazer and loafers at your friend’s laid-back barn wedding upstate. Point is: Regardless of what you wear ‘em with, a trusty pair of chinos will never do you wrong, no matter how attached you’ve become to your loungewear.

And if you’ve been off the chino train for a minute, right now is a great time to hop back aboard—after a decade or so of slim fits dominating the conversation, designers are shifting back toward a straight-fit silhouette that's more comfortable, universally wearable, and altogether timeless. When you’re sick of all the bonkers prints and voluminous cuts dominating the rest of your wardrobe, these fifteen unflappable pairs—yes, the very best men’s chino pants on the market today—will be just the palate cleanser you need. If you're looking to get back into the chino game for less, you'll find plenty to work with, but you can also check out our favorite khaki pants under $100.

The All-Around Best Chinos

A.P.C. classic chinos

$265
A.P.C.

A.P.C. gets a lot of shine for its denim, and with good reason: the steadfast Parisian label’s New Standard jeans were at the heart of the late-aughts selvedge boom. But it's 2022 now, the Golden Age of Pants, and a man can't live on raw denim alone. As it happens, A.P.C. makes a near-definitive version of that other most essential of men's bottoms—khaki chinos. Their take hits all the notes you want (a not-too-tan, not-too-pale shade of beige; a flattering straight cut with just a touch of taper) and a few you didn't realize you needed (the fabric is waterproof cotton gabardine, like your raincoat). Add to that a pretty reasonable price—from a cost-per-wear perspective, anyway—and you've got yourself a baseline against which all other khakis can be judged.

The Best Workwear Chinos

Dickies Original 874 work pants

$23
Amazon

We've sung the praises of Dickies' signature ⁠work pants so many times in the past year or so, you could probably write this blurb for us. They’ve got the higher-waisted, wider-legged cut we’ve been digging lately. They’re made out of a hearty cotton twill, which means they’re tough enough to stand up to construction sites and skate sessions, versatile enough to wear to the office or the bar, and come in roughly as many colors as a bulk pack of Crayola. Oh, yeah, and they only cost $23, which leaves plenty of room in your budget to tailor ‘em down a smidge or simply stock up on extra pairs. All of which is to say: this is by no means the last time you’ll read about Dickies 874s on GQ.com.

The Best Of-The-Moment Chinos

Gap relaxed vintage pleated khaki pant

$60
Gap

The big pant train has been chuggin' along steadily for years, and we've now fully arrived in the wide-leg era. And if there's proof of the silhouette's mass appeal, it's at none other than the Gap. Yes, they still make khakis, and they're still doing them very, very well. Their relaxed vintage pleated khaki pant is hitting all the right notes of a right-now pant. Full fit? Check. Pleats? Check. Slightly higher rise? Yep. And, thanks be to Mr. Gap, they're priced oh so well.

The Best On-the-Go Chinos

Theory Zaine pant

$195
Theory

In pre-pandemic times, you had a lot on your plate—meetings, dinner dates, maybe a flight in the mix—and you needed pants that could keep up. Now, with life starting to approach something resembling normalcy, you'll want to reacquaint yourself with pants designed to handle that degree of wear and tear. That's where these stretch chinos come in. They're fashioned from a super breathable and weather-resistant fabric that's a polyamide-elastane blend that wards off any wrinkles. They won't sag in the face of constant movement, or weigh you down in a gross pool of leg sweat. Wear them all week at home, toss 'em in your suitcase before your first post-vax trip, whatever: they'll stay looking fresh and crisp through it all.

The Best Fashion Guy Chinos

Lemaire pleated twill trousers

$610
Matchesfashion

For years now, fashion types have flocked to Lemaire in droves to scoop up the label's deceptively simple designs. Co-helmed by Christophe Lemaire and Sarah-Linh Tran, the brand carved out a niche for itself selling the sort of cerebral, subtly luxurious clothing that remains catnip for a certain kind of thoughtful dresser. Every season, Lemaire's pants tend to be a standout. This time around, it's the brand's chinos we're, ahem, completely losing our shit over. Cut voluminously and done up in a graceful twill fabric, they emphasize silhouette above all else, sure to pool elegantly on top of every pair of shoes you wear them with. Throw 'em on at any point over the coming months and you might feel obligated to sashay around whatever outdoor space you find yourself in—negroni in hand—while whoever's on the aux cranks the SOPHIE up to the max. Trust us: The power of a really good pair of chinos is that potent.

14 More Chinos We Love

J.Crew classic relaxed-fit chino pant

J.Crew has upped its game of late, and the mall stalwart's latest signature chino comes in a classic, relaxed-fit silhouette that we can't get enough of. They're not exactly billowy or baggy, but they do have the tasteful drape and elegance we crave.

$90
J.Crew

Bonobos stretch washed chinos

With just the right amount of stretch and a tastefully washed look, these feel perfectly broken in right off the bat.

$99
Bonobos

Thom Browne 4-bar classic cotton chino pants

The ideal way to flash your fashion chops at Sunday brunch—and make all your friends jealous.

$690
Nordstrom

Knickerbocker twill double pleat pant

Follow the wise ways of [old men] and their infinite style wisdom—go for the double pleats.

$225
Knickerbocker

Todd Snyder desert camo chino

Who said chinos had to be solid colors?

$228
Todd Snyder

Dime classic chino trousers

FYI: skate brands make some of the best pant silhouettes out there.

$150
SSENSE

Acne Studios wide leg trousers

For your next night at the Copacabana.

$320
Acne Studios

Officine Générale "Georges" belted organic-cotton twill trousers

Instantly elevated by that ever-elegant matching fabric belt.

$355
Matchesfashion

L.L.Bean lined chinos

These flannel-lined chinos will keep your legs fireside toasty all winter long.

$70
L.L. Bean

Polo Ralph Lauren stretch chino pant

Not only do Ralph's mainstay chinos come in all kind of fits and a rainbow of colors, they're also blessed with a touch of stretch for comfort.

$125
Ralph Lauren

Carhartt WIP Master pant

Khakis you can put through the ringer.
$108
Carhartt WIP

Abercrombie & Fitch straight chino pants

As classic as they come.
$69
Abercrombie

Alex Mill field chino

Olive chinos are just as neutral as tan—but maybe a little less obvious.
$125
Alex Mill

Brain Dead Whips and Chains wide leg pleated pants

The fastest way to make any piece of clothing in your closet look way fresher? Let Kyle Ng and the extended Brain Dead crew doodle all over it.
$220
Brain Dead

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