Saturday, September 22, marked the first day of fall. While it’s still muy caliente in many parts of the country, we’re damn ready for autumn. It’s time to fold up your shorts and pull out the pants.
We put together the best men’s pants for fall – specifically those that offer office-to-outdoors use, construction-to-cocktails transitions, and better-than-jeans builds. Consider this your kick in the pants to finally get new trousers.
Office to Outdoors
Wear to work, wear to the trail, Prana’s Stretch Zion Pant is stylish, rugged, and functional. You’d never guess that within this straight-leg, light (we mean surprisingly thin) cut is a DWR finish with abrasion resistance, quick-dry fabric with UPF 50-plus. The waistband is adjustable, so no belt needed, and the ventilated inseam is perfect for those cool in the morning, hot in the afternoon days of early fall. Colors range from cargo green to “mud.” Literally, the color is called mud and we love it.
The modern seam design on the thigh of Outdoor Research’s Wadi Rum pants is surprisingly tactical, allowing the wearer to go from town office to technical climb without changing into “workout” gear. The Cordura nylon, spandex, and cotton blend is cut to a standard fit, while the lightweight construction keeps your nether regions sweat-stain free (but a warning to those climbing in humidity: these are not the pants for you). A gusseted crotch adds extra mobility for your most daunting crux and the washed Taos colorway will help you blend in with the changing aspens. One wearer described them as “indestructible.”
We understanding shelling out more than two Benjamins for a pair of pants sounds ridiculous, but Mission Workshop delivers a return on your investment in the most comfortable, stylish, and enduring pant of the season. The Signal is a high-performance pant with DWR* finish and 5-pocket stretch with a durable military-spec four-way stretch nylon fabric from the USA. The Signal’s five-pocket stretch doesn’t look as MC Hammer as it sounds. It simply means the pants are made to move in, whether you’re camping, skateboarding, or biking. Plus they’re guaranteed for forever. We won’t judge you if you wear these pants to the office and trail all week long.
*DWR (or Durable Water Repellent) is a treatment applied to virtually all rainwear exteriors. Don’t buy any rain gear that doesn’t have this. Cool? Cool.
Construction to Cocktails
Handsome and hardwearing, no wonder these incomparable gnarly trousers are made by the Swedes at Fjällräven. With an articulated fit and slightly tapered cut (that makes you look more fashion-forward), the High Coast Fall Trouser is made in G-1000 Eco fabric, ready for outdoor labor without being too heavy or bulky, while also being stylish enough to wear to a rooftop bar after clocking out. Order one in every cool color, starting with ash grey, and you won’t need any other pants ever.
On-the-go jobs that take you from a desk to a construction site to a client lunch and home to your S.O. for an evening at the neighborhood martini bar requires two things from your slacks: a roomy fit that still looks tailored and sharp and durability — qualities that precisely describe Coldsmoke’s Terrain Pant. An ultra-durable, micro-ribbed, cotton canvas fabric with 4 percent spandex gets a durability and ergonomic boost from a gusset crotch. The fabric uses Schoeller, Swiss-made Feelgood 3XDRY Technology with a subtle rib weave. Add water-repellant, moisture-wicking, and quick-drying to the list of features. Plus, Terrain uses a Canadian military double slot design, attaching the button with mil-spec nylon twill, so it’s sturdier than standard threaded buttons and survives more wash cycles.
Made of rugged cloth with just enough stretch and a fabric that sheds rock abrasion, your colleagues will think you’re a mad man coming to work with Western Rise’s AT Slim Rivet Pant. But these pants are ready (and made) for anything. Finished with a nano-scale, durable water repellent to stay dry in a light rain storm and dry quick if they become wet, these pants also help you move with ease. They were created to be a tougher, yet more comfortable take on one of the most simple garments in history: a five-pocket pant. Bonus: The AT Slim Rivets absorb less odor and stains due to their DWR coating, meaning less side-glances at the cigar lounge.
BTJ (Better Than Jeans)
Fall is prime khaki time, which is why we love the new Tapered Fit of the Dockers Alpha Original Khaki Pants. These aren’t the baggy khakis you bought going into middle school. The new shape sits lower, are slimmer throughout, and narrow at the ankle to give you a lean and tall appearance. Plus, they’re under $70. At 98-percent cotton, the Alphas are comfortable enough to rival your favorite pair of expensive blue jeans, but acceptable for both impressing in-laws over Thanksgiving and relaxing at your favorite hometown bar.
More durable than denim and comfortable enough to wear on a lazy Sunday (or out on the town), the Passage Pant by Olivers is a fine piece of Italian craftsmanship, soft as leather, with a four-way stretch, gusseted crotch for at-home manspreading, and Italian stainless steel button and rivets. Jeans are for the summer, pants are for the fall. The Passage will be your go-to weekender/travel pant for autumn.
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