Athletic Shorts Are the "Ugly" Summer Staple I Didn't Know I Needed


(Image credit: @deborabrosa)

Buh-bye, bike shorts. There's a newer shorts trend I'm after right now, and it's basically taken the place of my beloved bike shorts this season. I'll just warn you now: This one might seem random. I can't exactly pinpoint why, but suddenly, I'm obsessed with nylon athletic shorts, and they're all I want to wear (and shop for) while we're still in the thick of summer.

Last year, I wore my sweatshorts to death while lounging and working from home, but fast-forward a year, I'm still in the market for a comfy and lounge-ready pair. This time, however, I'm swapping sweats out for a style that also happens to be versatile enough for everything from outdoor runs to travel and the occasional Netflix session. The styles that have my attention? They're inspired by traditional soccer and basketball pairs with drawstrings and nylon finishing. While OG sportswear brands like Umbro have been doing this forever, designer pairs from Prada, Staud, and Coperni have emerged, and accordingly, fashion people have been styling the athletic staple in their casual warm-weather 'fits.

Below, shop the coolest athletic shorts that have a fashion-person spin to them, and get inspired by how the style set is wearing them right now.


(Image credit: @emmanuellek_)


(Image credit: @deborabrosa)


(Image credit: @slipintostyle)


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(Image credit: @niki_inthecity)


(Image credit: @HIMICHELLELI)


(Image credit: @lucyraemcfadin)


(Image credit: @devapollon)

Next up, see the five shorts trends I'm purging from my closet this season.

Senior Editor

Anna is an editor on the fashion team at Who What Wear and has been at the company for over five years, having begun her career in the Los Angeles office before relocating to New York, where she's currently based. Having always been passionate about pursuing a career in fashion, she built up her experience interning at the likes of Michael Kors, A.L.C., and College Fashionista before joining the team as a post-graduate assistant editor. Anna has penned a number of interviews with Who What Wear's cover stars over the years, including A-listers Megan Fox, Issa Rae, and Emma Chamberlain. She's earned a reputation for scouting new and emerging brands from across the globe and championing them to our audience of millions. While fashion is her main wheelhouse, Anna led the launch of WWW Travels last year, a new lifestyle vertical that highlights all things travel through a fashion-person lens. She is passionate about shopping vintage, whether it be at a favorite local outpost or an on-the-road discovery, and has amassed a wardrobe full of unique finds. When she's not writing, you can find her shooting street imagery on her film camera, attempting to learn a fourth or fifth language, or planning her next trip across the globe.