9 Shorts That Don't Ride Up

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Originally Published: 
Bustle / Amazon

Shorts that ride up are one of life’s small agonies. The cause for this wardrobe irritation can usually be traced to sizing or the fact that the shorts have a rise that’s not built for you. Clothes are made on an assembly line; humans are not. It may take some trial and error finding the best shorts that don’t ride up, but a good pair will ultimately have a just-right fit for your body. To help find that pair, it's useful to first identify what's contributing to your shorts creep.

Throw Size Out The Window

If a tight tailoring issue is the culprit — usually either in the seat or leg opening — that can cause fabric to creep up. To help avoid this, throw your "normal size" out the window when shorts shopping and go off fit alone (this may mean going up a size or two). Also consider a fabric with a good dose of spandex that moves with your body.

Pay Attention To Rise

Rise (the area from the crotch seam to your waistband) is also worth paying attention to. A long rise might swing too low in the crotch area, where it then bunches uncomfortably. When you’re trying on shorts, a good general rule of thumb is to first check that the rise hangs no longer than an inch and a half below your groin. A crotch gusset can help create a more natural fit that conforms to the human body, and is especially helpful on snug workout shorts.

Embrace Different Styles

Opting for a longer inseam overall can also help. You might consider a long tapered leg opening that physically prevents shorts from riding up. Alternately, a slightly wider leg will also leave enough room for your legs to move around. (But not too wide, or all that extra fabric will twist up.)

If you want to improve the feel of shorts you already own, a product like Bandelettes can create more slip so your shorts' fabric glides over your skin, instead of using it for traction on the upward climb. That's why I also including a quality pair in the roundup below.

Below you'll find six pairs of shorts that have earned high marks from Amazon reviewers for specifically not riding up — and they look damn good too.


A Cult-Favorite Bike Short That Comes In Tons Of Colors

Over 48,000 Amazon fans have raved about these long bike shorts, which offer a total of three inseams (5,7, and 8 inches) so you can choose the length that’s right for you, then squat with confidence. The thick, wicking fabric is totally squat-proof with flatlocked seams to prevent chafing, and a gusset that makes it easy to get low. What shoppers loved most of all, however, were three good pockets capable of carrying even the largest phone case securely. “Just took them out on a 10mile bike ride in 93 degree weather,” a reviewer reported back. “Great side pockets - perfect for my phone and keys...didn’t ride up or cut my thighs in a weird way...Def excited to take them out for a run as I never wear shorts on runs because my thighs rub!”

  • Available options: 45
  • Available sizes: X-Small — 3X-Large


Some High-Waisted Denim Shorts With A Looser Thigh

These 100% cotton denim shorts have a looser fit in the legs and seat that's less likely to ride up, while the high waist offsets the wider leg so they don't look too baggy. The wide elastic waistband promises to feel comfortable all day — but note: these aren't pull-on shorts, and have a traditional button and zip fly. "I wanted a pair of high-waisted jean shorts that didn't ride up or show my booty when I walked around. These were perfect," one reviewer wrote. Another fan raved, "They were not tight around my thighs and they did not ride up on me. I just went back and ordered two more pairs!" The pure cotton is machine washable.

  • Available colors: 5
  • Available sizes: X-Small — X-Large


A Pair Of Tie-Waist Shorts You Can Dress Up Or Down

These cute vintage tie-waist shorts are a super-versatile option worth adding to your wardrobe. They can be styled with a tee and some sneakers to run errands, but totally transform with some heeled sandals and a crop top. The machine-washable polyester blend has 5% spandex for stretch. The flowy shorts have built-in pockets that don't add bulk, and you never have to worry about losing the belt since it's stitched on. "Comfortable and incredible stylish!" One shopper wrote, adding that these were "Well made high-waisted shorts that don't ride up and fit nicely." Cute and comfy? One in every color, please (and there are both wearable solid hues and fun prints to chose from).

  • Available colors: 30
  • Available sizes: Small — XX-Large


These Affordable Lounge Shorts With 12,000+ Ratings

These ultra-soft lounge shorts with pockets have a five-inch inseam that many reviewers commented on was ride-up resistant. "I have larger, muscular thighs and these were not hugging them or riding up. Did I mention these are super comfortable?" one fan raved. There's an adjustable drawstring waist in a sturdy triple-channel enclosure, and the polyester/spandex blend features four-way stretch that washes up beautifully in the machine, according to reviews.

  • Available colors: 2
  • Available sizes: X-Small — 3X


These Lounge-Worthy Plus-Sized Shorts With A Cult Following

Also boasting more than 12,000 Amazon ratings, these great plus-size cotton shorts rely on a long, roomy cut in natural fabrics to keep you super-comfy all day. They have an easy fit through the leg with a 7-inch inseam so you can rest assured they won’t travel north, and notches on the side of each leg ensure they’ll follow your natural range of motion. The flat, wide waistband looks nicer than a drawstring so you’ll get more mileage out of them than a traditional sweat short, but in 100% cotton you’re not compromising on comfort. “I needed some shorts to wear around the house for relaxing or during cleaning. These fit the bill perfectly. They don't ride up as much as some shorts in the past. I bought 3 in multiple colors,” a shopper confessed.

  • Available options: 5
  • Available sizes: 1X — 5X


These Shorts That Feel Like Pajamas But Look Polished

These crisp tailored shorts secretly feel super comfy. The fabric is a blend of rayon, nylon, and spandex that's soft and stretchy — you actually pull these on — with a five-inch inseam for just enough length. They have streamlined details like a contoured waist and decorative tabs that make them a considerable step up from denim shorts, and you can score them in dozens of colors and prints. "I normally don't wear shorts but I will now with these because they are so comfortable & soft and they actually fit me perfectly around my waist, butt & thighs," one reviewer raved, adding, "And, they don't crawl up in my inner thigh when I walk which is a huge plus for me!" You can wash these on cold in your machine, but they'll need to be line dried.

  • Available colors: 26
  • Available sizes: 4-18


This 2-Pack Of Buttery-Soft Bike Shorts That Reviewers *Love*

Over 250 shoppers left reviews for these comfy bike shorts specifically because they didn’t ride up, and they boast an impressive 4.6-star rating with thousands of fans. (So, yes, you’ll want two — maybe more.) The moisture-wicking performance fabric has plenty of stretch for your toughest workout yet manages to stay surprisingly soft. And for people who love the functionality of pockets but don’t want to look like they’re rocking cargos, the ultra-high waistband conceals two large drop-in pockets. “They were super comfortable and didn’t ride up at all during intense HIIT workouts. Loved them so much that I actually bought another pair a few days later,” a fan praised, adding they were “perfect even for just hanging out at home. You almost forget you have them on. Super cute patterns available too.”

  • Available options: 17
  • Available sizes: X-Small — XX-Large


Some Influencer-Approved Denim Bermuda Shorts That Are Surprisingly Wearable

Bermuda shorts are anything but stodgy when you know how to style them — and the longer silhouette has been spotted on everyone from fashion bloggers to celebrities. These have a high, fitted waist to define your shape with a tapered leg that literally can't ride up, and you won't overheat in what reviews called a "jegging-like" cotton blend (there's 5% spandex for stretch). "These denim shorts are so cute! Absolutely my favorite shorts for this summer," a shopper raved. "Perfect length to the knee and stretchy enough to be so comfortable!"

  • Available colors: 10
  • Available sizes: 4 – 16


These Workout Shorts That Really Don't Ride Up (& Come In 3 Different Inseams)

These high-waisted workout shorts are made from an ultra-stretchy polyester/spandex fabric blend with four-way stretch and a crotch gusset for a comfortable fit. They come in three different lengths (2.5-inch, 5-inch, and 9-inch inseams) so you can choose the one that feels best for you. "These shorts are long enough to protect my inner thigh from chafing and they don't ride up, which is a GODSEND," one fan reported. Two built-in pockets on each leg are big enough for a smartphone, with a hidden waistband pocket for keys and ID cards. Choose from affordable two-packs as well.

  • Available colors: 25
  • Available sizes: X-Small — 3X-Large


Also Nice: These Pretty Lace Bandelettes You Can Wear With Anything

A pair of Bandelettes are like the strapless bra: You might not wear them every day, but you'll be glad to have a pair when you need them. They slip under any pair of shorts to reduce friction and help keep them from riding up, and you can also wear them under dresses or skirts to prevent chafing. They work thanks to a double row of non-slip silicone that keeps the nylon/spandex fabric in place without suffocating your skin. You can pick up gorgeous lacy pairs like the one shown here, as well as plain versions for casual or sporty days. "So far I have just tried them on under a pair of shorts and they are comfortable, breatheable enough and I like the rubber lining strip that holds them in place," a reviewer wrote. "No weird swoosh noise when they rub together."

  • Available colors: 18
  • Available sizes: A – F

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