Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

Product Review: Hate Shorts? Wear These Lightweight Pants Instead This Summer

ONS Modern Chino

I kind of hate summer. It’s hot, it’s humid, there are bugs, and being a guy who naturally runs warm to begin with, I’m relegated to wearing as little clothing as possible whenever I’m going to be outdoors. That usually means a t-shirt, shorts, and sandals, whereas I’d really much rather be wearing jeans, a button-down, and a good pair of boots. In fact, even given my tendency to heat up fast, I often wear pants even on warmer days, largely because I really don’t like the look of shoes with shorts, yet also don’t like to wear sandals if I’ll be away from home all day.

But O.N.S. seemingly has an answer to my sartorial conundrum with its Modern Chino, an ultra lightweight pair of pants that could make for a stylish alternative to shorts. I’m already familiar with the New York City-based menswear brand, as its Rider Chino has been by my go-to pair of pants during cooler seasons. Will the brand’s Modern Chino prove to be just as functional for summer? We test it out.


ONS Modern Chino

To briefly touch or to feel the weight of the Modern Chino, you could be forgiven for thinking they were made from linen. But whereas linen is sourced from the flax plant, these pants are made from 100% cotton. Their light weave allows for much better breathability than you expect from a cotton garment, and they even dry faster and wick better than other cotton apparel I’ve worn. (Part of that might be because I simply don’t get as warm in these lighter pants.)

Fit and Style

Far too many pairs of chinos I’ve worn in the past force you to choose between comfort and style. I’ve found that pants that wrinkle quickly tend to also be the most comfortable, while pants that stay smooth for hours are often stiff and restricting. But that’s not the case with these O.N.S. chinos. I’ve worn them running down the street as I follow my son on his bike without ever feeling like I had to tighten my stride, and my pants still looked presentable afterward.

Likewise, I’ve kicked back on the couch in my chinos and not wished I’d switched to the mesh shorts that are my after kids’ bedtime go-to bottoms. Simply put, these pants are comfortable enough to wear all day long. And they can be dressed up or down as needed.


O.N.S. Pants

The Modern Chino retails for $128. For reference, a pair of similar chinos from J. Crew is priced around $80, while Taylrd chinos are about $90 at present, so these are indeed on the pricey side. But I’d argue that O.N.S.’ pants are more comfortable than those of either brand, and O.N.S. garments are made from sustainable materials. With that in mind, the slightly higher price tag is a bit easier to swallow.

How to Wear Them

You wear them on your legs, let’s get that much out of the way from the get-go. But what you wear on your feet and torso while they’re on your legs? There’s a lot of latitude there. Sandals and a t-shirt will look fine. So too will casual sneakers or leather shoes and a button down. Add a linen blazer (whether over a t-shirt or buttons and with shoes or sandals) and you’ll look great that way, too.

These are not dress pants by any means, but they can be dressed up to a great extent, and even more easily dressed down. And while these chinos will start to look pretty silly much after Labor Day, they’re the perfect pants for summer.

Editors' Recommendations

VRST Is the Best Alternative to Lululemon’s Athleisure We’ve Seen So Far
vrst athleisure line 2021 q1

This is not a story about Lululemon. It is a story about VRST, a Dick's Sporting Goods exclusive line of athleisure clothing, including commuter pants, joggers, tees, hoodies, and other easy-wearing lifestyle pieces that you'll want to wear every day, especially when the occasion calls for something that both breathes well and looks put together. But it's about Lululemon in the same way that the subtweet you sent was really about Drake even if you never mentioned Drake specifically. (We all knew who you were talking about.) Let me explain.

VRST is about Lululemon even if it never mentions Lululemon because Lululemon crushes with its ABC Pant, which stands for Anti Ball Crushing and, as its name suggests, is very comfortable. I have no fewer than five pairs of them, and I've owned more because they look like a pair of khakis but feel like a pair of running shorts. And in my home in the South, where the interminable summers are trying to crush my family jewels for six months out of the year, minimum, they are a godsend. Playing golf? Yes. Attending a Sunday service? No doubt. From date night to work event, they are so versatile and comfortable and flattering that I bought them in every color. To date, my only complaint is that, after repeated wears, they can retain the stink of old sweat the same way your workout tees can hold past funk. Lululemon's essentials, from tees to pants to polos, are guy favorites the world 'round, which is quite an accomplishment for a company previously synonymous with women's workout tights.

Read more
The Best Men’s Leather Gloves, Hands Down
best mens leather gloves 2020

The old saw about losing the majority of your body heat through your head has been disproven. The reality is that you lose the same amount of heat through any exposed skin on your body — so if your hands are bare, you’re also losing heat. While sport gloves or work gloves preserve your digital dexterity with thick lining, waterproofed exteriors, and reinforced palms, “streetwear” gloves rarely combine good looks with effective thermal protection. Generally speaking, you’ve got a choice between chunky knitted mitts that don’t pair well with grown-up fashion, or driving gloves made from thin, unlined leather that are pretty to look at but impractical in the cold.

If you’re out there suffering from frostbitten fingers, we’re here to help. It’s time for you to discover the world of dress gloves. Made for the style-conscious urbanite who isn’t above nodding to trends, the category of dress gloves is narrow, but the offerings are broad and inclusive. You can find dress gloves at online outlets like Huckberry as well as department stores like Bergdorf Goodman — basically, wherever you shop for quality goods. And if you want pieces to go with your leather gloves, check out our Black Friday fashion deals.
Best Men's Leather Gloves
Top Pick:  ELMA Winter Leather Gloves for Men

Read more
The Best Men’s Cashmere Scarves To Wear or Gift
best cashmere scarves man using tablet

Good ole Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow earlier last month and predicted six more weeks of winter. Although some might be skeptical of this century-old tradition, the weather forecast agrees we'll be staying bundled up at least a few more months. When dressing for the frigid weather it's important to be warm and comfortable in your abundant layers.

Scarves have been a part of men's wardrobes for decades, traditionally a staple that serves function now also allows you to add personal style while also beating the low mercury temps. Cashmere scarves are a must-have luxury during the winter that don't necessarily have to break the bank. Some of the best cashmere scarves for men are actually at a pretty affordable price point and don't sacrifice style or warmth.

Read more