Table of Contents Hide
Workwear Guru is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more
Cargo pants have been a wardrobe basic for working and outdoorsy individuals for years. Besides the multiple, convenient pockets that make cargo pants ideal, comfort and functionality make them a must-have. These pants need to be durable enough for work in the field and activities, but also lightweight and breathable so they are durable for long-day wear.
When it comes to quality and great design, cargo pants can be hard to find. Thereby, we have searched high and low to find the best for any occasion.
Here’s a guide on what to look for when picking your next favorite pair & our very own best cargo pants list for 2021.
Our Best Cargo Pants Picks
There are quite a few versatile cargo fits and the purpose they serve for, but how to find the best ones for you? Read on to find out.
1. CQR Men’s Tactical Pants
Made with polyester and cotton, the rip-stop fabric coated with a DWR water repellent makes these bad boys the most durable tactical pants at a reasonable price. The material used makes them lighter compared to the regular work pants, and suitable for humid conditions and colder climates.
The CQR pants are manufactured to have a slight military performance design. With details in the design, such as the boot/shoe cover, subtle waistband stretch, easily accessible back pockets, and gusseted construction and knee pad insert lining, these pants are ideal for any work type.
Even though the fabric itself is not stretchy, it is light and breathable. There is a waistband in the back that offers a stretch section for comfort in the belt area. As activewear, they are comfortable with plenty of room around the legs—great for hiking or any outdoor fun activity.
The best feature might be the articulated seams at the knees that allow maximum flexibility. At the same time, the pockets, which tend to be everywhere at all times, do the name of cargo pants justice. The fabric has rip-stop materials that guarantee protection and durability.
- High-strength metal alloy button
- Multi-purpose pockets
- Zipper with a durable mounted stopper
- Accommodating fit
- Additional button inside
- Velcro secured pockets
- D-Ring providing easy hook-on
- Not many colors available
- Tactical belt not included
2. UNIONBAY Men’s Survivor IV Cargo Pant
These are the ideal cargo pants—for work and play. With a classic cargo look, they come with a side and bellowed pockets handy for multiple uses. The great thing about this pair is that they have plenty of room in them without looking big on you. However, consider ordering the next size up or closest to your size.
These pants will have you sporting the ultimate cargo design with that vintage lived-in wash. The color selection is quite generous, along with the pockets. Eight in total, the main front pockets are deep enough to reach the other thigh pocket.
The Survivor pants were definitely made with the intention of providing comfort on any occasion. The waist is fitted, but you’ll still be able to move freely. The zip fly features a button closure to maximize functionality.
These cargo pants give extra pocket space without the bulky look, and they are also well-made. The material falls somewhere in the middle of not heavy or too lightweight, and as such, may not be the ideal ones for snowy winters.
- Affordable price
- Multiple cargo pockets
- Could use more belt loops
3. Dickies Men’s Loose-Fit Cargo Work Pant
These flat-front pants are versatile for kicks and runs, but also, at the same time, they have a dressy look. The quality is amazing, made of cotton, definitely the heavy-duty cargo pants that won’t wear down or shrink after repeated washing. The inside is a nice, soft material and the pockets run deep in the right way.
The severed corners of these pants pockets are made, so they do not curl up and ruin over time. The design is really sublime, with the flat front and deep pleated cargo pockets with buttons and velcro. They also sit perfectly over the boot or whatever shoe you wear.
With a fit that sits just right at the waist, there’s room in the seat and thigh for you to squat down and stay flexible without fear of tearing the material. They are straight-leg for that relaxed fit.
The loops of these pants will hold a tool-belt without sagging down. Featuring a zippered fly, buttoned waistband, and velcro-shut pockets, rest assured they will stay just as new even after continuous wear.
- Durable, heavy cotton material
- Roomy and flexible
- Classy look
- Might be a bit too long
4. Wrangler Authentics Men’s Premium Relaxed Fit Straight Leg Cargo Pant
These relaxed, straight-fit work pants are as comfortable as they are durable. What really makes them the ideal cargo pants is the pocket galore. The fabric is made of 100% cotton and the pants themselves sit a bit below the waist to offer maximum flexibility in movement.
Let’s talk about the pockets—with a total of eight, four of them are small & medium side pockets, two slanted in-front, and large flapped in-back pockets. The great thing is they are designed just right to look cool and casual. The color range is perfect as they can be part of any work uniform or for any outfit
The cotton material plus the relaxed fit, allow for maximum breathability. Since they are baggy to an extent, you are guaranteed to feel comfortable even with gear and tools in the pockets.
These pants cut offers comfort no matter the activity or work type. The pockets allow for easy accessibility since they are large enough to store essential items and their placement especially makes them the most convenient.
- Stacked pockets
- Relaxed seat & thigh
- Great for uniforms
- Material a bit thin for colder seasons
5. Carhartt Men’s Ripstop Cargo Work Pant
Apart from being great heavy-duty cargo pants that sit just right in all the right places, they also look great whether you’re wearing them as a part of the uniform or casually hanging out. The durable material makes them great work pants, while the fit and design make for cool casual pants.
The front ledge and back pockets are Cordura-lined, with cargo flaps and snap-closure to ensure the gear is secure. The stitching and perfect sit at the waist is what really make the fit of the pants. They give off the look of a relaxed, baggy fit, the right way.
Even though they are on the baggier side of cargo pants, they do not get in the way or catch onto things while working around. Great for any fieldwork or outdoor activities, these feature a comfortable gusseted crotch and side pockets with snap closure for easy accessibility.
Upon the first look, you can see they are built for tough jobs and work environments. They have double-front and clean-out openings for knee pads, ripstop fabric to resist rips and tears, left-leg hammer loop, and narrow, deep, open-top side pockets, for an easier grab of your tools.
- Rip-stop fabric
- Baggy & comfortable
- Pockets compatible with tools
- Gusseted crotch
- No pocket ideal for phone
6. 5.11 Tactical Men’s Stryke Operator Uniform Pants
Amazing work cargo pants that are resistant to stain, soil, and moisture thanks to the Teflon-coated material. The coating does not, however, compromise breathability and it certainly makes the pants easier to clean. Despite the material which they’re made of, the pants do not make any noise.
These pants are more of a straight fit, with a slim appearance rather than baggy. They have a total of twelve pockets, a stretchy waistband, and overall soft cotton material with hints of pinstripes in the fabric.
This pair of pants provides maximum flexibility and a secure fit to eliminate your fears about rips and splits, featuring a gusseted inseam and a tailored look.
With a perfect fit over any work or military boot, these pants also have pockets that provide storage and easy access to work gear and tools.
- Material is great for year-round weather
- 12 pockets
- Not noisy
- Resistant coating
- Color tends to fade after consistent wear & wash
7. Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pant
The Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants are everything you need in cargo pants. They are comfortable, made of lightweight and breathable materials, and they have lots of pockets for storage. For maximum flexibility, these cargo pants have articulated knees. And no worries if you are someone who likes to have a lot of color choices because these pairs of pants have 12 different colors for you to choose from.
The Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants are made of 73% cotton and 27% polyester two-tone twill. They have pockets in the front and back of the pants. And these cargo pants come in 12 different colors, so you have a variety of design choices based on your style of preference. They are lightweight and easy to walk around in. In addition, they can turn into shorts.
Cargo pants are known for the comfort and ease that they offer. They have articulated knees and are Omni-heat thermal reflective. They sit comfortably at the waist and thighs.
For maximum comfort and practicality, these cargo pants offer articulated knees, which makes them most flexible. They have pockets in the front and back to store your small items and you can wear these comfortable pants with any outfit or footwear. And most importantly, with one zip, they can be transformed into shorts.
- Lightweight and breathable
- Omni-heat-and thermal reflective
- Articulated knees
- Pockets in the front and back
- Convertible into shorts
- If you have a more muscular build you should size up
8. Dockers Comfort Cargo D3 Classic-Fit Pant
With the classic, versatile look and convenient zippered pocket, these pants work well in almost any situation. The fit, cut and design are just right, giving off the style of a rather ‘dressy’ pant than they really are. The color selection perfectly matches the style, whether you want to dress them up or down.
As a casual style cargo pant, but with the roomy fit, these Comfort D3 Khakis are intended to keep you feeling comfortable and looking great no matter the occasion.
Tailored from soft cotton, with a spacious seat and thigh room these pants feel great, even after hours of wearing without constraint.
These pants also have a hidden expandable waistband, ensuring comfort without being baggy or loose. The slanted side pockets, zippered leg pocket, and button-flap back pockets allow for easy access while being secure at all times.
- Button closure
- Machine wash
- Soft cotton material
- Accommodating fit
- Not many colors available
How to Pick Your Cargo Pants?
Cargo pants for men are a great way to make your work uniform look good, however, you also need to feel good in them and be able to maximize practicality. Not only are they good for work, but they are also great for business casual or evening outfits.
Here’s a little guidance on what to look for in such pants.
We suggest looking for cargo pants made out of materials like cotton and protective material, as it plays a big part in how comfortable you’ll feel in them. Some styles feature gusseted seams and knee pad openings for flexibility.
It is important for cargo pants to be practical, and features such as belt loops that can handle tool belts, easy-access pockets, rip-stop or resistant materials are extras that play a part in how they can be of help in a work or play environment. Search for what features would come in handy for the purpose you’re getting the cargo pants for.
The pockets are what sets cargo pants apart. The number, size, and placements of said pockets are to be considered when choosing the right pair. They tend to be in the form of a patch pocket, often with a flap secured by a snap, button, magnet, or Velcro. Cargo pants usually have six pockets at the minimum, with divisions for separating your personal belongings from work equipment.
Cargo pants for men come in a variety of styles. They can be short or long, with multiple-use pockets in the front, side, and back. They can also come in a solid color range, where you can choose from a vast array of colors of dark and neutral colors. The most common fits for these pants are a regular, straight, or relaxed fit.
There’s certainly plenty of styles and fits to choose from. However, we advise taking into consideration what you intend to wear them for and the fits that you feel most comfortable in. We hope this list helped guide you to the perfect cargo pants!