Five Plus One is our weekly series of buyer’s guides. We pick a specific category and dig up five great options along with one that’s a little outside the norm.
Not all days can be denim days, and having a variety of different styles will guarantee you have the right pants for any occasion. This week we are looking at tech pants—pants built from highly engineered fabrics for warmth, water resistance, stretch, or any number of other attributes that are hard to achieve with ordinary fabrics.
1) Outlier: Slim Dungarees
For the last several years, Outlier has become a favorite among denimheads and techwear fanatics alike. Their Slim Dungarees feature a standard five pocket jean pattern with ample thigh room and a substantial taper below the knee, but the fabric is where these pants really shine. They’re constructed from a custom, two-way stretch canvas, which is treated with a nano product to resist both water and dirt. The warp of the canvas is made of Cordura nylon while the weft is made from a nylon/poly blend helping these dungarees to be both durable and fast drying.
Available for $198 from Outlier.
2) Makers & Riders: AeroDri 4 Season Wool Trousers
It can be hard to justify spending several hundred dollars on a pair of techwear pants if you’ve never worn anything of the like before, but luckily Makers & Riders makes some great entry level tech pants, such as their AeroDri 4 Season Wool Trousers. This style is made of a 46%/51%/3% Merino Wool/Polyester/Spandex blend that is light, durable, attractive, and wrinkle and water resistant. They feature a hidden zipper rear pocket, slanted front hand pockets and a tapered silhouette.
Available for $89 from AeroDri.
3) Uniqlo: HEATTECH Stretch Slim Pants
Uniqlo’s HEATTECH line of clothing arguably offers the best price:quality ratio of any techwear out there. The fabric used in their HEATTECH Stretch Slim Pants might not be quite as high tech as those used by higher end techwear companies, but by keeping you extra warm, stretching for comfort, and drying more quickly than traditional fabrics, it definitely does the job. This style isn’t quite as slim as some of Uniqlo’s other offerings, but it’s a solid fit nonetheless.
Available for $40 from Uniqlo.
4) Mission Workshop: The Mission Jean
Mission Workshop is most known for bags, but their Mission Jeans are no slouch either. They’re constructed from a custom made 55%/35%/10% cotton/polyamide/elastane-blend fabric that is breathable, water resistant, and durable. The pattern isn’t too different from your standard five pocket jeans, and they come in two cuts: straight and slim, and are outfitted with nice detailing—like tucked belt loops and hidden rivets on the back pockets—for good measure.
Available for $285 from Mission Workshop.
5) Levi’s Commuter Series: Slim Fit Bi-Stretch Trousers
Levi’s Commuter Series produces some great products, especially for cyclists. Their Slim Fit Bi-Stretch Trousers are constructed from a 52%/42%/6% cotton/polyamide/elastane-blend, and appear to be a run-of-the-mill trousers cut at first glance. Upon closer inspection, however, you’ll see that these trousers have a u-lock holder, reflective tape outseam, mesh lining, and gussets—all of which set these tech trousers apart from the ordinary.
Available for $118 from Levi’s.
Plus One – Arc’teryx Veilance: Anode Comp Pants
Arc’teryx Veilance is known for producing some of the nicest tech clothing available, their Anode Comp Pants certainly fall under that umbrella. They’re made from two fabrics—a softshell wool with a cotton lining and a cotton/nylon blend. And while the two-tone nature of these pants might not be for everyone, they certainly are some of the most unique tech pants on the market. They feature unique slit back and front pockets, webbing belt loops, and a yoke-less design.
Available for $400 from Arc’teryx Veilance.