Men’s Flared Pants are the Making the Most Unlikely Comeback


Wear if you dare.

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The fashion world is full of unexpected comebacks, but things are really going crazy recently. The first sign was the return of popularity of plaid and flannel shirts, as these went from hipster specialty to wardrobe must-have.

Then there was the return of the much-maligned sweater-vest. An item I’ve only ever known as a source of ridicule was suddenly in every shop. And what’s more, people were pulling it off.

The biggest surprise of all, however, is the return of men’s flared pants. While still by no means mainstream, these pants are slowly gaining in popularity in multiple different guises. They’re on the catwalks and being worn by the more fashion-forward celebrities. But like most trends, I reckon it’s only a matter of time before these pants are fully mainstream.

Which, of course, leaves us all with a huge problem. How on earth do we wear these pants? What are we supposed to do with all that extra material? And most importantly, how do we avoid looking like an extra from a 1970s sitcom?

That’s what we’ll explore in this article.

Men’s Flared Pants: How to Wear Them

Wear Big Shoes

One of the biggest issues with flared pants is the wide opening and the excess material drowning out your shoes. At best that will leave pants as a shapeless mess, and at worst you’ll completely ruin them as they drag on the ground as you walk.

One of the easiest ways around this is to wear them with chunky shoes or big sneakers. The Dr. Marten-style footwear in the image above are wide and chunky enough so they can hold their own against the onslaught of material.

Wear them Cropped

Another option to solve the problem of excess material is to wear pants cropped or turned up. Do this and the material will fall just above the shoe. What I like about this style is that it really accentuates the flared shape of the pants.

It also allows you to wear them with thinner, slighter shoes, like in the image above. Bonus points for ironing a perfectly straight seam into the denim and wearing them with a heeled pair of shoes.

Choose a Higher Waist

Many current takes on the style are blending flares with a super-wide led. In this case, you can choose a pair with a higher pants rise to ensure they keep their shape as they fall over your hips and legs. Wide pants are one of our pants trends to look out for this year, so it’s the perfect time to grab a pair.

Embrace the Look

Flare Jeans

If you’re already considering experimenting with flared jeans, it’s safe to say that you don’t mind standing out. In this, why stop at making a flared cut the center of your outfit? Consider going for an embroidered, patterned, or patched pair of flared jeans. Or try a pair of flared slacks in a color that isn’t a typical blue or gray.


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Duncan Elder

Duncan is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Boardwalk. He's a menswear writer who has spent the last 15 years developing his own sense of style, which lies at the cross-section of mid-noughties indie and Uniqlo-inspired minimalism.

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