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Our stylists' guide to the best chinos

Our stylists' guide to the best chinos

Our stylists are on a constant mission to find the very best clothing by category, and they don’t take the task lightly. They test a range of styles and take note of everything from fit and length to comfortability and style (and they self-admittedly enjoy every painstaking minute of it). Their most recent focus: the tried-and-true chino. Get a group of guys together, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find two guys who agree on the best pair, so our stylists got into the nitty gritty and anointed their favourites for each type of chino wearer. So whether you prefer traditional styles with a flattering fit or a slim fit that can accommodate larger thighs, we've you covered.

Photographed: Arlen Slim Cotton Stretch Chinos ($107)

Best classic slim-fitting styles 

Arlen slim-fit cotton stretch 

This tried-and-true style has a slim fit with a slightly tapered fit – a great choice if you have muscular thighs but want to avoid a baggier fit (and a hefty price tag).  

Selected Homme Paris slim-fit chinos 

This reasonably priced style is the one to reach for if you prefer a slightly cropped look to nail a more contemporary vibe. 

Jack & Jones Marco Bowie slim-fit chinos 

If you have a bit of a belly and still want a slim fit, this style has a slight dip at the front to accommodate a bit of protrusion. And it comes at an even more reasonable price point than the aforementioned styles. 

Photographed: Fred Perry Twill Trouser ($162)

Best workwear styles 

Mr P straight-leg garment-dyed chinos 

This style has all the makings of a smart chino without looking like it's trying too hard. Made with a comfy washed fabric, this is the perfect pair if you’re after a workwear vibe with a casual feel. 

Norse Projects Aros cotton-drill chinos 

If you prefer a heavyweight fabric that lends your chinos some structure, this style has our stamp of approval. It still has a workwear look and feel, but with a lovely neat fit and a slightly higher rise than most.

Arlen regular-fit chinos 

Think of this style as a smarter take on Dickies. It's perfect if you want to bring a bit of a contemporary edge to a smart casual outfit, and as a bonus, it's a lower-budget version of some of the other workwear options. 

Fred Perry twill trouser

This style was a hit for many of our testers. It has a lovely wide fit and a workwear feel, plus it's designed with a nice white French seam on the outer hem, which shows in the turnup. The twill is quite light, but it has some structure so it’s more of a work trouser than the Mr P pair, meaning you have the choice to dress them up a bit. 

Best longer-fitting styles 

APC classic gabardine chinos 

If you like a longer chino with a slim fit and a short rise (yes, we’re getting specific here), this pair is for you. 

Incotex slim-fit garment-dyed chino 

This is a great alternative to the APC style above. For both style, the price tags tilt higher, but you’re paying for a quality pair that will be in your wardrobe rotation for years to come.

Best slim-skinny style 

M&S slim-fit smart chino

This style might be labelled as slim fit, but it ended up landing on the skinnier style. It's a great choice for someone who likes a slightly skinnier slim-fit style – without committing to a standard skinny chino.

Best traditional style 

Hugo Boss Crigan stretch cotton twill chinos 

Our testers described this smart, classic style as perfect for a summer wedding or special event. (Blazer and bow tie not included.) 

Ralph Lauren slim fit chino 

It’s no surprise that Ralph Lauren came up smart and preppy with a slightly looser, more traditional fit than most slim styles we tried. This style would look great paired with an Oxford shirt and a blazer for a look that’s, well, very Ralph Lauren. 

Photographed: Carhartt Sid Slim Tapered Chino ($111)

Best overall style 

Carhartt Side slim-tapered chino 

This style was the unanimous favourite. It has the structure of the more expensive APC chinos but with a more generous fit. It also strikes the right balance between smart and casual, with a nod to workwear style. And better yet, it comes at a price point you won’t scoff at. 

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Words: Thread stylists