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20 types of pants you should definitely own

Pant styles that are timeless

Dressy to casual, pants fit all fashion styles. But the wrong kind of pants can take you from a fashion diva to a fashion toddler. I think that the most important things to consider when going about getting your pants are

  1. It fits you properly. 
  2. The color of the pants complements you
  3. The style matches your age and body shape

If these considerations are taken care of, your pair of pants is sure to make you look fabulous. Check out these 18 styles of pants and decide on which one you need right now.

The most common Pant styles

Dress pants

This is the most common type of pants and you most probably own one and wear it to work every day. Dress pants (or suit trousers as they are also called) refer to pants that are worn for formal to semi-formal functions; they are usually made of woven material or expensive suiting material and may or may not be part of a suit. These pants usually have an opening in the front with zipper and or buttons.

Slack is such a trouser that is not part of a suit. 

Straight pants, as the name suggests, are straight all along their length. Flat-front pants are seamless and pocketless. 

Here is a tutorial to make comfortable to wear straight pants for women.


Jeans are made of a rough and thick material called denim.

It is characterized by double stitching lines all along the seams done in a thick thread. Made for rough use, jeans epitomizes youthfulness. To know the names of 45 different types of jeans in this post – Different types of jeans. 

jeans fashion

Related posts : 18 different ways to refashion and embellish your jeans to suit your style, 4 easy ways to shortening the length of too long jeans  or 15 ways to distress your jeans and 8 ways to patch your jeans and Make a Knee ripped jeans – DIY tutorial (without removing the white thread)

Related post : History of Jeans

history of blue jeans

Overalls or Jumpsuits

These are pants which have a bodice attached to it at the waistline. They have a long stitching line starting at the neck and going along the crotch line at the front as well as the back. Pockets are usually topstitched. These are usually worn by workmen. Jumpsuits are also a favorite in kids-wear.


These are some kind of shorts. They are knee length or slightly longer in length. Capri/pedal pusher is a 3/4 length pants – the hem falls just below the knees. The hem is usually cuffed.

Check out the 17 different types of shorts there are.


Checkout the tutorials to make capri pants which are longer shorts or to make men’s boxer shorts as well as simple girl’s  shorts – 3 Free patterns and tutorials. 

Harem pants

These are trousers with gathers at the waist and at ankles. The gathers are held by elastic bands or waistbands with drawstrings.

Checkout the harem pants pattern to make this beautiful casual but fashionable harem pants ; or an easy to sew bohemian hippie pants   or two easy patterns to make wrap pants (yoga pants & samurai pants)

hippie pants diy wrap pants pattern

Baggy pants

These pants are loose fitting pants. Harem pants is a type of baggy pants. Baggy jeans is another pants in this style.

Check out the sewing tutorial for a baggy drawstring lounge pants you could make yourself

Checkout the tutorial to make stylish Palazzo pants and 12 ways to style the palazzo pants 

Bell Bottoms/ Flared pants

These pants are fitted at the waist hips and thighs and flares from the knees. Boot cut pants/jeans is in this style. In this type the flare starts  from the knees to the ankles.


These are very fitted pants made of hosiery or knitted stretch material. Treggings are leggings that look like trousers and Jeggings are leggings that look like jeans with small details like pockets (faux) and front fly and the jeans special seam stitching.

Learn more about the difference between leggings, pantyhose and stockings.

Checkout this tutorial to make a leggings pattern and step by step instructions to sew one in your favourite fabric even cotton. 


Most people confuse tights and leggings and call them by the same name. But there is a slight difference between leggings and tights; though tights are  made of the same stretch material as are leggings, tights extend to cover the foot as well.

Punk Pants

These are pants with lots of stitching lines and pockets stitched on it for decorative purposes rather than functional. They are very popular among the young generation and the style varies with years.

pant styles

Stirrup pants

Pants very similar to leggings, the only difference being that they have a connecting strap that goes under the foot holding the pant in place like a belt.

Cargo pants/Carpenter pants

Cargo pants and carpenter pants are pants with additional pockets or different types of pockets than the one on traditional pants – usually placed half way down the pant legs.

The carpenter pants have more than 4 pockets and additional hoops called hammer loops (under the main pockets).

Cargo pants features special roomy cargo pockets half way down the legs.

Fatigue Trousers

These are military inspired pants (imitating the original trousers worn by American Military in Vietnam war) with details like Zip fly with button closure, inner drawstring and buttoned down cargo pockets in camouflage fabric.

Stovepipe pants (Drainpipe trousers)

This term refers to the fitted silhouette of the pants. This term is used  almost synonymous with skinny jeans, so you know what it looks like. Stovepipe pants are very slim fitting pants with tapered legs (trousers or jeans). They look almost like leggings on you. Most of the stove pipe pants are designed ankle length. Other names for these pants are cigarette pants, pencil leg pants.

Peg-leg pants

These are relaxed fit pants with a cropped tapered leg; they taper and becomes fitting at the ankle where it ends. They have darts at the legs to make the pants slim fitting there. 

Toreador pants

These pants are cropped and close fitting and end somewhere near the calf, just under the knee. They resemble the pants that Spanish bullfighters wear and hence the name. 

Eastern pants

These are pants which have elasticized or drawstring waists with big flared legs.

Checkout the tutorial to make 5 types of eastern (Salwar) pants – Dhothi pants, plain salwar pants, chudidhar pants, patiala pants. 

how to sew salwar pants

Jodhpur pants

These are pants which are loose to the knees and end in a simulated cuff at the ankles. A different take on Jodhpurs is riding habits worn by the horse riders. They are calf length and ends in a long simulated cuff.

jodhpur pants

Cropped Pants

This is a pants style with the hem cut just above the ankle. Flood pants is in this style – cut just above the ankle.


These are trousers with a bib which is attached to the back with two adjustable straps.  They are made of very thick material. The bib usually has a pocket or sometimes patch.


A short history of women’s pants

When Coco Chanel came across wide legged trousers during a trip to Venice, it signaled the rise of a new era in women’s fashion. Till then only women workers wore trousers and that too for ease of working. With Coco Chanel’s patronage, the loose slacks became high fashion statement. During 1950s High waisted cigarette pants and capri pants gained fashion favor. Wide waistbands, flat fronts, side zippers high waists – all these were features of these pants.

The 1970s saw bell-bottom flared trousers gaining attention following the hippie movement. In the 1980s the masculine silhouette with corporate style pants along with oversized jackets gained popularity.

In 1990s grunge look with baggy trousers and ripped jeans was fashionable. Then by 2000 came the skinny jeans and low rise jeans. Sporty chic with cool track pants and pants suits are all fashionable as we speak.

If you are looking for the different categories of pants in terms of its fit, cut rise etc, check out this post Fitting guide for pants – 15 terms that matter.

pants fitting

Check out more posts like this one:

20 Different types of shirts ; 20 Different types of t-shirts ; 15 different types of shirt collars ; Different types of necklines.

20 different types of belts you can wear with pants.

50+ Different types of dresses.
dressing tips to look thin

choose the right skirt style that suits you   wardrobe essentials


AUTHOR : Hi, I am Sarina. I am passionate about clothes, sewing, fabrics, fashion and surface design techniques in no particular order and absolutely love writing about all of these including what I learn, what I experience, and what I have bought to do all these. You are more than welcome to stay here and learn with me.

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