Our list of the best, most-flattering, easiest-to-style spring short trends for the year.
One of our absolute favorite style shifts happens when spring’s weather turns to summer (or, if you’re on the West Coast, the calendar does), and it happens: the return of shorts. Sure, they’re casual, flirty, and fun—but shorts are also a remarkably versatile wardrobe staple that can really go anywhere. Think about it, once relegated to spin class, bike trips, or worn under dresses, 2020 saw the iconic bike short take center stage in summer style, paired with everything from t-shirts to work-ready linen blazers.
Maybe it’s because there’s something about summer that makes it easy to be creative: a summer-Friday vibe that runs through the entire week, giving us an excuse to try something new that will keep us chic, cool, and moving fast to where we need to be. Shorts—with their elemental comfort, iconic look, and utilitarian functionality do all of that, and then some.
And each summer season brings new shorts to try and explore, even to rediscover, such as the humble bike short that made its comeback—aided by a mid-pandemic call for easy comfort and minimalism—and is still going strong. This year, we’ve got our eyes on hiker shorts to show some serious staying power. They’re everywhere this season, and they’re chic enough to stay around in years to come. Also, don’t sleep on Bermuda shorts. These longer-hemmed styles are not your granddad’s Bermudas. With a slightly updated cut and a universally flattering length, they’re back in a big way.
Right now there are so many short trends to choose from—from iconic silhouettes to bold and impactful prints. No material is off the table, from shiny satin to even crochet. If you think that shorts are only for weekends, casual jaunts to the beach, road trips, or your errands, we implore you to think again. These short trends offer you incredible, fun, and creative style, elevating one of our favorite warm-weather wardrobe staples and making these various styles true wardrobe staples.
Here's our spring short forecast for the year—you’ll find your favorites, and we recommend trying a few new ones too. We know you’ll discover a short trend that is flattering, functional, and incredibly easy to style.
Our Favorite Shorts To Buy Right Now:
One trend you’ll see a lot this summer is patterned sets. Like the very best of summer fashion, patterned sets are so, so easy. They make outfit planning a breeze and always look super polished and put together. If it feels like too much, break up your pattern with a solid base layer.
The best thing about Bermuda shorts is that they really never go out of style. Cut in a longer length that is universally flattering across all body types, the Bermuda short has a retro vibe that also feels absolutely of the moment. Pair them with a bikini top, your favorite t-shirt, or even a slouchy cardigan.
CLASSIC DENIM SHORT
You can always count on an icon to make a style forecast list. Classic denim shorts will never go out of style thanks to their versatility and timeless ability to go with literally everything you wear. Right now, higher waists are the look to go for, also look for frayed hems and simple distressing.
PAPER BAG WAIST
The easy-to-wear paper bag style gets its name from the waistline that’s gathered to look like the top of a paper grocery bag. The style is cut like classic women’s shorts, but the paper-bag detail at the top gives it a little something extra. Keep shirts tucked in to show off the waist of this super-flattering style.
FAUX LEATHER SHORTS
Unexpected fabrics are absolutely on demand this spring, including shiny, go-anywhere leather lookalikes. We love these leather-like shorts with a paper bag detail at the waist, nailing two of the coolest trends of the year. Imagine them on the town during a girls’ night out, or in the office paired with a chic blazer, crisp button down, and a classic wedge.
Another textile we love seeing in our selection is crochet. The intricate patterns and retro-cool mood of crochet shorts make them a must have. The fabric is naturally feminine, flattering, and flirty, and is easy dressed up or down.
Comfortable, cool, and no boyfriend required, boxer shorts are one of the coolest and easiest summer short looks to pull off. A longer length hem and easy, loose-fitting cut make these extra comfortable while still staying on trend. Pair them with a fitted shirt to balance the looseness or your favorite t-shirt for an easy, breezy style.
There are few things more quintessentially summer than terrycloth shorts. These super soft beach-day favorites have a decidedly retro vibe that we love and are perfectly paired with your favorite swimsuit, crop top, or tank. On breezy days, toss an unbuttoned twill shirt to complete your 70’s surf-instructor vibe.
We are all about a sweet detail, and women’s shorts with a tie-waisted top definitely fit the bill. With a longer belt that knots into a bow, this touch of feminine whimsy goes easily from the office to cocktails to lunch with your in-laws. Pair them with a fitted tank, a cute blazer, and your favorite pair of heels. Want to keep it simple? A basic t-shirt works just as well.
If you’re traveling this summer, there’s one pair of shorts that absolutely must go in your bag: hiking shorts. Why? Because these classically-cut styles go anywhere, from real, actual hiking to dinner at your favorite seafood spot. They have utility details and an outdoorsy vibe, but are easily paired with a silk top and heels for a dressed-up moment. During the day, pair them with your favorite t-shirt and platform sneakers for an afternoon of sight-seeing.
CUFFED HEM SHORTS
It sounds simple, but a cuffed hem is an easy, often-overlooked detail that has made a comeback thanks to the universally-flattering line it creates on the leg. The soft cuffs give a slouchy and relaxed look without adding bulk and a flawless finish to the hem. Wear them with literally anything.
The best part of the summer shorts styles we love so much is that while they’re absolutely having their moment, they’re not going away anytime soon. If you invest in a well-made pair—or several pairs—of each, you’ll be wearing them for years to come.