September 26, 2022

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18 Best Jean Denim Shorts For Every Fit Or Style, Per A Stylist

denim shorts

Sarah Leituala

What do you wear when it’s *super* hot out, but you still want to pair that fave top of yours with a pair of jeans? Wear denim shorts, of course! From the 60’s to the 90’s, DIY fashion lovers were cutting their jeans into denim shorts, starting a fashion trend that’s still relevant today (and I’m soo grateful!).

“Jean shorts are a closet staple and look great on everyone thanks to the abundance of styles, cuts, and washes available,” says fashion stylist Natalie Acopian. “You can dress them up with an oversized blazer thrown over a t-shirt and some mini heels, go for a more laid-back and relaxed look with a loose-fitting white shirt and some gold hoops and flats, or play up your sporty side with a bralette and tennis sneakers.”

No matter which way you love to wear them, you’ll first have to find some denim shorts to swoon over. Here are the best denim shorts you should add to your wardrobe ASAP, per a style expert.

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1

Best Short Denim Shorts

Blue Jean Shorts

Who wears short shorts? You will, after adding these cuties to your cart. “If you’re looking for a pair of Daisy Dukes, look no further,” shares Acopian. “This mid-waist ripped denim short rides high on the thigh and comes with stylish side slits.”

Material: 85% Cotton, 10% Polyester, 5% Elastane

Sizes: S-2X

Care: Machine wash

2

Best Everyday Denim Shorts

501 Original Shorts

“501’s with their straight fit are the OGs of summer shorts,” says Acopian. “They’re short enough to be sexy but not so short your cheeks will be hanging out. And, with over twenty colorways to choose from, you won’t have trouble finding a hue you’ll love.” I’m sold!

Material: 90% cotton, 1% Elastane

Sizes: 20-42

Care: Machine wash

3

Best Relaxed-Fit Denim Shorts

Parker High Waist Denim Shorts

“The shredded raw-edge hem gives these waist-hugging light-washed shorts attitude,” shares Acopian. “They’re chic with a vintage vibe and while the price may be on the higher end, the quality is high, too.” Pair them with some loafers or your best vintage-y shoes to complete the look.

Material: 100% cotton

Sizes: 23-33

Care: Machine wash, tumble dry

4

Best Stretchy Denim Shorts

A-Line Mom Shorts

Grab your best chunky white sneaks because these mom shorts were made for summer. “Made of a cotton and spandex blend, these high-rise dungaree shorts will flatter and move with your body all day long,” says Acopian. “They’re especially great for hikers and glamping.”

Material: 90% Cotton, 9% Polyester, 1% Spandex

Sizes: 25-35

Care: Machine wash

5

Best Jean Shorts For Activity

Boracay High-Rise Utility Shorts

The jeggings of denim shorts, these bad boys don’t restrict movement. “These shorts are made of two percent spandex for moderate stretch and eight percent rayon for moisture absorption, allowing for flexibility and cool times—great for a round of Spikeball at a BBQ!” shares Acopian.

Material: 70% Cotton, 20% Polyester, 8% Rayon, 2% Spandex

Sizes: 0-16

Care: Machine wash cool

6

Best Colored Denim Shorts

Oahu Short

You won’t be able to buy just one of these. “There’s no shortage of colors with 10 shades to choose from—including brights like coral, royal blue, yellow, and cool tones like saddle and brick. Choose a lighter hue for day and darker shade for a nighttime look,” says Acopian.

Material: 70% cotton, 20% Polyester, 8% Rayon, 2% Spandex

Sizes: 0-16

Care: Machine wash cold on gentle, tumble dry low

7

Best Ripped Denim Shorts

Ripped Denim Jean Shorts

These shorts are just the right amount of bold. “The rips on these high waisted denim shorts are enough to make a statement without going overboard,” shares Acopian. “Their relaxed fit makes them a great choice for shopping or traveling.”

Material: 75% cotton, 24% Polyester, 1% Spandex

Sizes: S-2X

Care: Machine wash

8

Best Denim Shorts For A Night Out

Danisa Denim Shorts

Looking for something gram-ready? This is your pick right here. “Asymmetric buttons are all the rage right now, as are light blue washes,” says Acopian. “These super fun shorts are the ultimate cool girl short.”

Material: 100% Cotton

Sizes: 0-12

Care: Machine wash cool

9

Best Size-Inclusive Denim Shorts

Good Curve High Waist Shorts

Soft and stretchy, these jeans won’t give you the tucked in, breath-restricting feel some jeans are known for. “These stretch denim shorts, with their frayed hem and light distressing, are designed to fit every body,” notes Acopian. “You can score these shorts in regular and plus sizes—choose from size 00 all the way to size 24!”

Material: 72% Cotton, 7% Recycled Cotton, 11% Modal, 9% Elasterell-p, 1% Elastane

Sizes: 00-24

Care: Machine wash, tumble dry

10

Best Curve-Friendly Shorts

Denim Bermuda Shorts

JEN7 by 7 For All Mankind

Want to accentuate what your mama gave ya? “These denim Bermuda shorts are designed to show off your curves. “They’ve got a released hem, which means the seam that holds the hem at the bottom of the short’s legs has been removed for less rigidity and more flexibility,” says Acopian.

Material: 91% Cotton, 7% Elastomultiester 2% Spandex

Sizes: 0–18

Care: Machine wash cool

11

Best Eco-Friendly Shorts

ÉTICA Elia Stitch Shorts

If you want denim that gives a different feel than your typical go-to’s, these shorts are a statement piece. “Add some cowboy booties and gold jewelry to these premium organic dark wash shorts and you’ve got yourself a look!” says Acopian. “Plus, you can feel good knowing the company that makes these stylish shorts employs sustainable practices to minimize waste, water, and energy consumption.”

Material: 100% Organic Cotton

Sizes: 24-31

Care: Machine wash

12

Best Top-Rated Budget Denim Shorts

Vintage Denim Jean Shorts

Need something cute without digging too far in your wallet? Add these to cart. “For less than $22 dollars with Prime shipping, you can’t go wrong here!” shares Acopian. “These high-waisted shorts have received over 9,000 positive reviews, come in over 25 colors, and sizes range from X-small to XX-large.”

Material: 90% Cotton, 10% Polyester

Sizes: S-XXL

Care: Machine wash

13

Best Festival-Ready Denim Shorts

Feather Trimmed Denim Shorts

Why wear regular shorts when these fashionable ones exist? “These feather-trimmed denim shorts will put you in the spotlight whether you’re a fun music festival or simply out on the town with friends,” Acopian says. “Pair with a crop top and body chain to complete your look.”

Material: Cotton, Polyester

Sizes: XS-XL

Care: Machine wash with similar colors

14

Best Thigh-High Denim Shorts

Samba Tango Crushed Short

Opt for mid thigh-length shorts if you’re looking for a little extra coverage. You get breathable, airy vibes without going too short if you don’t want to. “These jean shorts are great for meeting up with friends for lunch,” says Acopian.

Material: 99% cotton, 1% Elastane

Sizes: 25-32

Care: Machine wash

15

Best For An Afternoon In The Park

Relaxed Cut-Off Short

Comfy and cute, you can’t go wrong with these. “The distressed edged hem and classic five-pocket design on these relaxed cut denim shorts make them perfect for casual summer afternoons out with friends. Plus, the cutouts on the sides are a nice touch,” adds Acopian.

Material: 100% Cotton

Sizes: 24-31

Care: Machine wash cold

16

Best Cuffed Shorts

5″ Denim Short

These shorts can easily elevate any look whether you’re just throw on a tee or a fancy top for a brunch date. “Take your dog for a morning walk in these five-inch cuffed denim jean shorts—your neighbors will wonder how you pulled it together so early!” says Acopian.

Material: 70% Cotton, 28% Recycled Polyester, 2% Spandex

Sizes: 2-16

Care: Machine wash

17

Best Stretchy High-Rise Denim Shorts

Frayed Denim Shorts

“These shorts have a lot of good stuff going on—from the multi-button detailing on the front to a frayed raw hem and the perfect amount of distressing,” says Acopian. Don’t let the detailing fool ya, though. These jeans are still super stretchy for a comfy feel.

Material: 85% Cotton, 10% Polyester, 5% Elastane

Sizes: 2-20

Care: Machine wash

18

Best Stylish Shorts

The Kript Lijah Shorts

Acopian’s site, Colorful Natalie, features a pair of jean shorts you’ll love wearing with heels or sneakers. “These high waisted shorts, with their torn and jagged hem, are a 10 out of 10 when it comes to style,” notes Acopian.

Material: 100% cotton

Sizes: XXS-L

Care: Machine wash

19

What should I wear with denim shorts?

The great thing about jean shorts? They look great with just about anything in summer, including:

Tops:
•Loose-fitting white shirts
•Classic nautical stripe shirts
•Longline blazers
•Oversize button-downs
•Ribbed jersey tops
•Milkmaid style blouses
•Striped cross over bardot tees
•Colorful cardigans or knit sweaters
•Off the shoulder or one shoulder tops
•Tank tops
•Neutral t-shirt
•Jean jackets
•Biker vests
•Oversized band tees

Shoes:
•Leather cord sandals
•Cotton slides
•Flat white tennis sneakers
•Platform sandals
•Boho chic sandals
•Ankle boots
•Converse sneakers
•Cowboy boots

Accessories:
•Straw or wide brimmed hats
•Neck tied scarfs
•Dark sunglasses
•Tan or black leather belts
•Fringe shoulder bags
•Hoop earrings
•Colorful necklaces
•Trucker hats
•Chunky hair clips

20

What’s the best way to wash jean shorts?

Although those first few washes are key to breaking in your new denim, the agitation from a washing machine can damage the thread quality over time. To keep your shorts looking as good as the day you purchased them, read the care label.

“Some jeans need to be hand washed, for example, if they have an embroidered detail or beading,” says Jennifer Ahoni, a principal scientist at Tide. “For jeans shorts that are machine washable, turn them inside out to help preserve the finish, then wash in cold on gentle speed, using a little detergent.

Once the cycle is complete, air dry your shorts to prevent shrinkage.” You’ll also want to wash them less often to preserve their color and shape. “If there’s no visible dirt, wash your jeans every three wears,” adds Ahoni.

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