denimsupplycargoAlthough much maligned, the humble cargo pant, in its many-pocketed glory, remains a favorite of guys everywhere.  A ready alternative to jeans for casual dressing, the utilitarian cargo pant has undergone a style makeover at the hands of many menswear designers for fall.  Less baggy than their predecessors, and absolutely no elastic waistbands, today’s cargo is a streamlined, flattering, viable option, often in a print or a bold color that ups the style ante.  But please, no crocs or mandals, pair these 5 fashionable bad boys with rugged, lace-up boots for your urban explorations. (If you want an example of someone who does cargo wrong, Google DiCaprio.)

Gant by Michael Bastian

Humbly dubbing their cargo The Perfect Cargo, this pant, much like everything Michael Bastian designs, actually is pretty perfect. Not too slim, not too baggy, with a low waist and mid-thigh high cargo pockets, this is a great cut for all kinds of body types. Available in grey, red and olive, Gant styles the look with penny loafers and a plaid shirt, which is hard to disagree with. ($225)

Todd Snyder

Modern preppy with an edge, Todd Snyder’s Signature Cargo Trouser is a cotton herringbone with a tapered leg.  Also not too slim a cut, these Olive colored pants would look great with brown boots and a chunky fisherman sweater. ($295)

J Brand

Much loved for their highly coveted jeans, J Brand’s Trooper Slim Cargo Pant tapers down to a 14” leg opening, but still manages to maintain a comfy, cargo pant look.  Available in Navy or Army Green, dress them up with an oxford, loose tie and sport coat for an unexpected twist. ($235)

Levi’s

Venerable American brand Levi’s definitely ups the ante with their amazing Slim Straight Cargo Pants. Super slim styling in a non-stretch twill, with mid-thigh cargo pockets, these pants definitely rock. Available in British Khaki, light grey and super small Camo print, pair these with black lace-up boots and a fitted, black turtleneck  sweater for a city-chic look. ($78)

Denim & Supply by Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren’s funkier, younger-skewing diffusion label Denim & Supply offers up three different styles of cargo for fall.  Our favorite is the slim fit Cotton Camo Cargo Pant (see above image) with American flag detail on the cargo pocket. Super stylish traditional camouflage print with a great, slim, tapered fit, Ralph styles these with boots and a plaid shirt.  It takes a strong, strong man to pair mismatched patterns with style, if Ralph can do it, then you definitely can, too. ($125)

Image courtesy Ralph Lauren