Last updated: August 12, 2021

A pair of men's cargo shorts is a sporty and casual looking pair of shorts with the distinctive feature of having side pockets. This detail ensures that these shorts are simply super practical, as you can easily stow smaller items in them. As a result, you don't have to carry a backpack or fanny pack. The pockets are usually located in the thigh area. Another functional element can be the separation of trouser parts. Likewise, the cargo shorts for men can also look very stylish and be combined with many different tops and shoes.

The men's cargo short was originally often worn by workers, but has then developed over time into a popular everyday trouser. In our article, we go into more detail on various buying criteria and questions around the selection and use of your new cargo shorts. At the same time, we also report on specific combination options and present you with everyday looks. You can then use all this information to make a well-considered purchase decision.

The Best Mens Cargo Shorts: Our Picks

Buying criteria: What to look for when buying men's cargo shorts

In this section, we will present relevant criteria to help you decide between the different alternatives of men's cargo shorts. Based on these aspects, you can then also see which features are important for you and your use.

These are the following buying criteria:

  • Material
  • Length
  • Comfort
  • Colour and pattern

In the following, we will go into more detail about what is important in each aspect.


Cargo shorts for men are often made of robust cotton. Of course, there are also some cheaper synthetic cargo shorts available. As with all other garments, it is advisable to pay attention to the quality and workmanship of the material. Basically, you should consider how often you will wear your men's cargo shorts and whether or not a higher quality material is necessary for the occasions.


Men's cargo shorts come in different lengths. The most common is usually the version that either reaches the knees or goes slightly above the knees. From time to time, however, you can also buy shorter cargo shorts. Basically, however, many men don't like it when their trousers are too short. They are also more suitable for shorter men. Such men's cargo shorts make shorter men look taller. For taller men, it looks as if the trousers are simply too small.

A special functional element that is found in longer men's cargo shorts is the detachment of the trouser legs. Often, the lower part of the trousers can simply be detached via a zip and you end up with an ordinary pair of cargo shorts. Of course, this detail makes this type of trousers a great piece of clothing especially for longer excursions. So, for example, if you have planned a longer hiking tour and start early in the morning when it is still a bit cooler, it is also advisable to wear long trousers. But as soon as it gets warmer and you start to sweat from exertion, you can change the long trousers into shorts in a matter of seconds.


Since cargo shorts for men are often worn for outdoor sports or leisure activities in general, it is of course very important that they are also comfortable. In general, the shorts have a casual cut and sit rather loosely. A good wearing feeling is achieved, for example, by an elasticated waistband in the trousers. A belt is always a great styling element, but it can also be a nuisance, especially if you like it comfortable.

Colour and pattern

Many men prefer rather plain clothes and don't think too much about this topic. This type of man is more likely to go for plain coloured cargo shorts. Classic colours for plain models are khaki, beige, black, dark blue, brown or grey. Another advantage of monochrome models is that they are easier and uncomplicated to combine.

However, there are also men who are more daring in their choice of clothing and like to experiment with different styles. For this type of man, men's cargo shorts with more striking, large-scale patterns may be suitable. A very well-known pattern is the army pattern. With such shorts, you can easily create a whole army look. Cargo shorts are also often available in a check pattern. Meanwhile, there are also many men's cargo shorts in colourful palm or flower patterns. Such trousers are of course the perfect companion for summer holidays at the beach.

Men's cargo shorts: The most important questions answered

In this section you will find answers to the most important questions about the topic of cargo shorts for men. Consequently, you can expand your knowledge once again. In addition, we also give you a few tips on what you can best combine your cargo shorts with and how you can create a great outfit suitable for everyday wear.

What types of men's cargo shorts are there?

There aren't really any specific types of men's cargo shorts, however, different cargo shorts can be distinguished by the type of pockets they have. After all, this detail is what ultimately makes the difference between cargo shorts. In the following, we have compiled a brief overview:

  • Men's cargo shorts with large pockets: These cargo shorts are characterised by large, protruding pockets. A big advantage here is of course the stowage possibilities. For an excursion, for example, this feature can be very practical. However, such trousers can also quickly look very bulky and bulky and it can of course also be annoying if you ultimately want to stow away too much.
  • Men's cargo shorts with small pockets and buttons: These cargo shorts are more suitable for a casual look. They are just as practical and can look stylish at the same time. However, the functionality is lost if the pockets are only sewn on, but you can't stuff anything in them.
  • Men's cargo shorts with zipped or Velcro pockets: Besides the typical cargo shorts with buttons, there are also those that have a zip or Velcro closure on the pockets. This is a special styling element.

Now you have to decide which variant is best suited for your use.

For which activities are men's cargo shorts suitable?

Men's cargo shorts are actually suitable for just about any occasion in your free time, except perhaps for a fancy visit to a restaurant. So you can wear them, for example, when going to the cinema, cycling, hiking or even working in the garden. Their functional element and casual, loose cut make cargo pants a real feel-good garment. Of course, wearing cargo shorts for men is mainly a good idea in spring and summer.

What is the best way to create an outfit with men's cargo shorts?

For example, a simple plain-coloured pair of cargo shorts in grey, beige or blue can be combined with a plain-coloured T-shirt, long-sleeved shirt or a thin jumper. It may not necessarily be a good idea to choose the same colour here. It is best to choose a top in white or black to go with such men's cargo shorts in plain colours. You can't really go wrong with such a combination. Add white sneakers and you have created a leisure look that is almost always appropriate.

Another outfit can be created with brown or green men's cargo shorts. These can be combined with a loose shirt in a lumberjack look, for example. Furthermore, low shoes made of light or dark brown leather or fabric shoes go well with this. This simple look is on the one hand comfortable and on the other hand very stylish and trendy.

How do I clean and care for my men's cargo shorts?

Basically, it is always advisable to read and follow the manufacturer's care instructions. To avoid damaging your men's cargo shorts when washing them, it is always advisable to use a laundry bag and a water temperature that is not too high. Depending on the exact pockets on the cargo shorts, there may also be certain points to consider. Buttons, for example, should be closed before washing. Velcro fasteners may need to be specially cleaned from time to time to remove lint and the like. This can be done with your fingers or with tweezers.


Every man should buy a pair of men's cargo shorts at some point in his life. These shorts are suitable for outdoor sports, for working outside or simply for wearing in your free time. To be satisfied with your men's cargo shorts for a long time, make sure that they are of good quality and that they are of a length and colour that you feel comfortable in. Furthermore, it is best to follow the manufacturer's care instructions.

Whether you prefer the army look, a floral print or a plain coloured cargo short, you will find what you are looking for. You can also find cargo shorts with different types of side pockets. To give you some inspiration for an outfit with your new men's cargo shorts, we have also provided the description of two simple looks. You can use these to guide you and complete the looks according to your personal preferences.

Image source: Kishor/

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