The 20 Best Denim Shorts for Grown-Ups

These aren't your booty-skimming jean shorts of yesteryear.

Best Denim Shorts
(Image credit: Edward Berthelot/Getty Images)

Like a breezy dress or comfortable sandals, denim shorts are a summer essential. We're not talking about Daisy Dukes, also known as the booty-skimming jean shorts you wore for every summer activity in the mid-'00s. Today's jean shorts are all grown up, and—yes—can even be worn to work, if you know how to style a high-waisted pair. (Though if you're looking for itty-bitty options to throw into your carry-on for a day at the beach, those styles have only got better with time, too.) In short (get it?), there are no downsides to them: You can denim shorts dress up or down, and they seem to get comfier with each and every wear.

Still, as with jeans, there are a lot of options available. Some denim shorts are super-short and flirty, some hit mid-thigh for a work-appropriate look, and others range from mom jeans-esque to distressed black denim. You can pick from low-rise or high-waisted styles, and there are endless washes, styles, and lengths to peruse. We know finding the perfect denim shorts that look good and feel good can be a pain, and that's why we've done the hard work for you.

Gabrielle Ulubay
E-Commerce Writer

Gabrielle Ulubay is an E-Commerce Writer at Marie Claire and writes about all things beauty, sexual wellness, and fashion. She's also written about sex, gender, and politics for publications like The New York Times, Bustle, and HuffPost Personal since 2018. She has worked extensively in the e-commerce and sales spaces since 2020, including two years at Drizly, where she developed an expertise in finding the best, highest quality goods and experiences money can buy. As a film school graduate, she loves all things media and can be found making art when she's not busy writing.