From skinny jeans to boot-cut flares to wide leg vintage, we've seen fashion trends dip in and back out of style. But this year, there's one pant style that's reemerging from our Y2K closets: the cargo pants. Dia & Co reported Google searches for cargo jeans were up a whopping 33 percent this year in the U.S. Meaning: Cargo jeans are going to be the "it" jean this coming fall and winter, so better stock up now.
Known for their loose and baggy fit, cargo jeans are stylish yet functional, and have an un-distracting design. Not to mention, they have pockets deep enough to store all of your essentials (think: wallet, keys, phone, and lip balm). For this reason, we want a pair in every color and fabric, including cargo jeans.
What are cargo jeans? Let me explain. It's what happens when cargos and jeans have a baby (not a literal one), meaning the pants adopt a cargo silhouette while having a jean fabric. Similar to regular cargos, they're comfortable, functional, and they go well with everything: cropped sweaters, chunky boots, and shackets, you name it. It's no wonder why they've come back in style— and this fall, there are several pairs that we've been eyeing. For example, this Ragged Priest pair from Urban Outfitters comes in a dark wash and is finished with zippers (so fetch).
The best cargo jeans
Below, you'll find pairs of every style, shade, and silhouette. Time to bust out the trendiest pants of the year.
Urban Outfitters never disappoints, and this pair from Ragged Priest is here to make a statement. The relaxed, low-rise fit makes this pair comfortable to wear, and is forgiving at the bottom with a subtle flare below the knee. Despite it being baggy, the three-tiered design gives the jeans some shape, and it’s finished off with zippered pockets.
Sizes available: 24-34
Acid wash was a trend of the ’80s and now you can travel back in time with this pair. Featuring an elastic waistband (we love an elastic waistband), these pants offer a little give and have pockets for days (two have flaps—this style just keeps giving and giving!). Toss on a flannel or shacket to complete the look.
Sizes available: XS-L
Another essential cargo jean, the Marx is comfy as it is stylish, pairing well with booties and a ruffled blouse (or a sweatshirt and sneakers if it’s a lazy Sunday). It’s slouchy, has a wide-leg, and offers a mid-rise fit. Even more, it features six oversized pockets, four of which have tapped buttons to prevent your essentials from falling out. Seriously, what’s not to love?
Sizes available: 24-32
A budget-friendly option, Ugerlov’s cargo jeans won’t break the bank. Made of a cotton and polyester blend, this pair retains its shape and has a wide-leg fit, so you know it’ll look good with chunky boots. Style it in blue denim or choose from four other washes: black, grey, light grey, or light blue.
Sizes available: S-XL
Abercrombie & Fitch
Originally $100, now $50
Sure, Abercrombie & Fitch has a problematic past (did anyone watch the Netflix doc?). But these days, it’s under new leadership, and offers a better-than-average variety of inclusive sizing, impressive array of jean styles, and the prices are very wallet-friendly. Basically A&F did an entire overhaul, and it’s now our go-to spot of budget-friendly, awesome jeans. Including these cargo or “carpenter”-style jeans. Coming in three washes, these Y2K jeans give you a relaxed fit, low rise (but not too low-rise! I know we’re scarred, fellow millennials), and the extra 2” through the hip and thigh gets rid of any waist-gap worries. It’ll be one of the most comfortable pants you’ll own.
Sizes available: 24W-33W
We love that these come in eight different colors, including this light, washed out blue (but also lilac and autumn brown with flower embroidery). These are also listed as “carpenter” jeans, which just means they’re also hyper-relaxed and have tons of pockets—like the cargo jean. These ones are a bit more rigid (so great if you prefer your denim not to stretch throughout the day—they’ll keep their true form), and they’re also made from 20 percent recycled cotton (score).
Sizes available: 2-14
Whenever celebs are wearing jeans, eight times out of ten, they’re wearing Mother. The star-beloved, LA-based jean brand makes some of the most comfortable, stylish jeans on the market—all with the signature “M”s on the back pocket. These high-end cargo jeans are cute and practical, thanks to their barrel leg, patch pockets, and perfect amount of stretch.
Sizes available: 23-34
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