The 31 Best Cargo Pants for Women, According to Designers and Celebrities

Trust us—this early '00s trend is surprisingly wearable in 2023.

guest wears a beige with green leaves print pattern short sleeves shirt, a black shiny leather nailed / studded belt, pale yellow large cargo pants, a white latte mesh cotton handbag, black shiny leather with white embroidered seams shoes, silver rings , outside JW Anderson, during the Milan Fashion Week - Menswear Spring/Summer 2024 on June 18, 2023 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Edward Berthelot/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Edward Berthelot/Getty Images)

Scrolling through TikTok a few months ago, I noticed a new addition to the ever-present small top/big pants trend. The fashion TikTokers I followed were now wearing their favorite cropped tanks not only with baggy, wide-leg jeans, but with baggy cargo pants, too. So I turned to the experts about how exactly to make the best cargo pants work in your wardrobe for summer 2023, especially if you’re not a trendy member of Gen Z (or an avid TikTok user).

The rise of the cargo pants proves that we’re living in a sartorial blend of the ‘90s and the early aughts. Cargo pants grew in popularity in the grunge-outfit era of the late ‘90s before really gaining traction in the very early aughts; they were loved by Aaliyah, Christina Aguilera, and Britney Spears during that time. The appeal lies in the way that cargo pants are traditionally workwear-inspired, but can have a feminine approach.

Danielle Guizio, the founder of her namesake fashion brand, says she loves cargo pants because they go with everything “Distinct silhouettes, like the cargo pant, are making their way to be more culturally hybrid amongst all people,” she says about why they’re trending right now. “Plus, nothing beats the comfort of throwing on a baggy pair of pants that are far from skintight or uncomfortable.” 

Now, cargo and parachute-style pants are being spotted on a new crop of It-girls, including Lori Harvey, Bella Hadid, Emma Chamberlain, Hailey Bieber, and Gigi Hadid. They also popped up on the runways at brands like Coperni during the Spring/Summer 2023 season and at Stella McCartney for Resort 2024, proving their unexpected longevity.

Emma Chamberlain's Classic Cargo Pants

Emma Chamberlain is seen in SoHo on February 13, 2022 in New York City

(Image credit: Gotham/GC Images)

Cargo pants make a statement no matter their color, so start off with a pair that comes in a classic colorway if you're new to the silhouette. Emma Chamberlain styled her deep green pair with a sheer top and some lug-soled rainboots for an easy fall ensemble.

Hailey Bieber’s Black Cargo Pants

Hailey Bieber is seen leaving Bar Pitti on June 14, 2022 in New York City.

(Image credit: MEGA/GC Images)

Hailey Bieber donned this perfect pair of black cargo pants on a very casual day in New York City. She opted for a sportier vibe for the recent of her ensemble, going for a cropped white tank top, slender black sunglasses, and a pair of black sneakers

Bella Hadid's Denim Cargo Pants

Model Bella Hadid is seen on March 01, 2020 in Paris, France

(Image credit: Marc Piasecki/GC Images)

For a summer and fall-ready look, style your pair of cargo pants and an equally-oversized denim jacket, and a pair of chunky sneakers like Bella Hadid did. This look is all about being comfortable and casual, so play with proportions to find the ones that work for you. 

Gigi Hadid's White Cargo Pants

Gigi Hadid is seen walking in soho on July 19, 2022 in New York City

(Image credit: Raymond Hall/GC Images)

White cargo are a great alternative to your favorite pair of white jeans because they're often a little more comfortable. Take a page from supermodel Gigi Hadid and style them with a cropped black T-shirt and matching sneakers for an easy off-duty vibe. Or, wear them with a white top for a monochromatic outfit

Lori Harvey’s Nylon Cargo Pants

Lori Harvey is seen on June 02, 2023 in Los Angeles, California

(Image credit: hecelebrityfinder/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images))

Parachute-style nylon pants are sometimes lumped into the same category as cargo pants because they have a similar silhouette, and are often styled the same way. Take Lori Harvey, for example, who styled hers with a coordinating black top, a black leather jacket, and a pair of black sneakers. The shiny material is casual enough to work for a day off but can be dressed up for a night out. 

How to Style Cargo Pants

For Guizio, cargo pants' wearability is tied to their vintage appeal—but you don’t need to dress like you stepped out of a Y2K-era romantic comedy. To make them feel updated, Guizio recommends elevating the look overall. “Styling them in a more sophisticated manner from top to bottom” is a great way to make them feel refreshed, she says. Think about adding playful accessories to keep them from looking too masculine, like “sunglasses, accessories and of course fun shoes.”

For daytime wear, Guizio prefers to keep cargo pants casual. “I like to wear my cargo pants with an oversized hoodie and sneakers,” she says of her ideal day look. “Then, underneath I will wear the tiniest top in case my mood switches up That way I have the best of both worlds and am able to dress for whatever the day brings.” 

When it comes to nighttime styling, Guizio opts to pair her cargo pants with classically feminine pieces: A “sequin or beaded top and a fun pair of colorful Manolos” are her specific callouts. If you’re looking for a similar way of styling your cargo pants, opt for a tube top or halter top. 

Meet The Expert

Danielle Guizio
Danielle Guizio

New York-based designer Danielle Guizio founded her namesake womenswear label in 2014. Capturing the essence of subversive sensuality and boldness, the designer is inspired above all to empower the wearer and celebrate the female form. The ready-to-wear collection celebrates the modern-day woman who aims to deviate from the traditional and push boundaries in all aspects of life. Woven knits, structured suiting, and signature corsets are emboldened with asymmetrical details, purposeful cut-outs, ruching and custom hardware.

The label has established itself as a favorite among the Hadids, Kardashian-Jenners, Rosalia, Blackpink, and Lady Gaga for their signature corset iterations and form-fitting silhouettes that evoke a sense of unabashed femininity and vulnerability. Finding continuous inspiration through the subcultures of New York, the self-taught designer’s approach to womenswear reflects the spirit of this culture while signaling to the socio-political climate through the lens of the designer as a woman.

Julia Marzovilla
E-Commerce Editor

Julia Marzovilla is the E-Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she covers everything from the latest beauty and fashion launches and sales to celebrity outfits and news. She also creates shopping guides that span every vertical on the site. Prior to joining the Marie Claire team, she contributed similar shopping stories to sites such as Bustle, InStyle, The Zoe Report, Who What Wear, and STYLECASTER. In her spare time, Julia can be found creating shopping guides for all of her friends, spending too much money on yet another pair of black boots, and cooking in her far-too-small kitchen.