Five ways you can style cargo pants for that “effortlessly cool” vibe

Five ways you can style cargo pants for that “effortlessly cool” vibe

Cargo pants, initially made for the British military, have, over the years, been embraced by numerous subcultures, including punk rockers, skateboarders, and hip-hop artists. Here’s everything you need to know.

The image showcases five individuals wearing cargo pants

The ‘90s hiphop essential

In the 90’s and 00’s, the cargo pants had a significant place in hip-hop culture and was incredibly popular among artists and fans. They were often worn oversized, with pockets filled with essential items like wallets, keys, Walkmans and the ever-iconic Nokia 3210. It’s rugged fits perfectly with the rebellious and edgy style that hip-hop culture embodied. Its popularity among rap legends like Eminem, Tupac Shakur, and Aaliyah, helped make them a staple in urban and streetwear.

In 2023, everyone from Jennie from Blackpink to Travis Scott have been spotted rocking cargos as they embrace the ‘90s and Y2K look. Join them by scrolling our complete guide to styling a pair of cargo pants.

How we are styling cargo pants in 2023

Everything’s chill in 2023 and the key look all over social media is a simple combination of t-shirts and cargo pants. By playing with the designs of the tee or cargo, you can easily build a fit for any occasion. Need to dress up? Just add a workwear jacket or switch out the t-shirt for a button up. From skateboarding to running errands and going out with friends for the night, this combo will turn heads.

Here are some of our outfit recommendations for different occasions.

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Night out with the boys

It’s a night out in town with the boys, so we are going for comfort and relaxation while still looking stylish. A basic t-shirt and cargo pants will do the trick every time, and to really spice up your outfit, throw on a few accessories. The name in the game for comfy outfits is to really hone in on looking effortless yet put together.

Shop The Look

Top: Carhartt WIP pocket tee – $39

Cargo Pants: Dime Ripstop Cargo Pants – $195

Ring: A.P.C. A Plaque Signet Ring – $139

Necklace: A.P.C. A Logo Necklace – $189

Socks: Short Sock in Confetti – $16

Sneaker: New Balance 9060 Brown Black – $154


Running errands but make it cool

For this look, the aim is to grab and match pieces of clothing that will match and make you look put together, even if you need to run out the door in five. A hoodie and sweatpants combo is *the* basic streetwear outfit that we know and love, but to elevate that, you can add on some accessories and a tote bag to complete the fit.

Shop The Look

Hoodie: Patta Popover Hoody – $159

Cargo Pants: Carhatt WIP Cole Cargo Pant – $155

Ring: Needles Smiley face ring – $220

Tote Bag: Puebco large labour tote bag – $39

Cap: Canada Goose 5-panel disc cap – $195

Socks: Nike Everyday Lightweight training crew socks – $25

Sneakers: AJ1 High OG True Blue – $258


Cruising through Somerset skate park

If you are looking for a more subcultural look, you can opt to try an outfit inspired by skateboard culture. First emerging in the 1980s, skaters often opted for outfits that were practical while expressing their individuality. The loose fits and graphic tees reflect the community’s laid-back, carefree attitudes and signature rebellious energy.

Shop The Look

Top: Places + Faces Daft Tee – $75

Cargo Pants: Palm Angles cotton cargo pants – $758

Ring: Chrome Hearts Crosstail Ring – $396

Ring: Rolling Stones Lip & Tongue Spacer Ring – $251

Earrings: Cross Cut Out Stud Earrings – $401 

Bracelet: Miansai Annex Cuban Chain Bracelet – $129

Sunglasses: GIVENCHY GV Day Square-Frame Acetate Sunglasses – $266

Socks: Vans Half Crew Socks – $12

Sneakers: Vans Old Skool – $89


The next football match

The perfect outfit for the next big match is inspired by Bloke Core. It’s a fashion trend influenced by the British pub culture of the 1990s and is a reinterpretation of ‘casual’ outfits through a high fashion lens. Often well-proportioned, Bloke Core looks comprised of soccer jerseys, straight-cut jeans or baggy pants, and worn-out sneakers.

Shop The Look

Top: Adidas Juventus 22/23 Home Jersey – $115

Cargo Pants: Stan Ray Cargo Pant – $149

Watch: Timex T80 34mm Stainless Steel Digital Watch – $88

Headphones: Apple Airpods Max Headphones – $585

Socks: Adidas Originals Trefoil Liner Socks – $20

Sneakers: Adidas Samba OG sneakers – $169 


Friday at the office

TGIF! Once the clock hits 6 pm, it’s time to start the weekend. Kick off the weekend with a Travis Scott-inspired outfit. It is a unique blend of streetwear, hip-hop, and rock influences, topped off with some bling for a little flex to close off the work week.

Shop The Look

Top: ICECREAM Italic logo-print t-shirt – $91

Cargo Pants: Attachment straight-leg cargo trousers – $384

Ring: Maria Black Gemma Silv Chain Rng – $115

Necklace: Cohen Perla Marinia chain-pearl necklace – $586

Bag: Côte&Ciel Inn sling bag – $175

Watch: A BATHING APE® Type 1 BAPEX® 40mm – $1,129

Socks: Short Sock in Confetti – $16

Sneakers: New Balance 550 – $229


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