4 Casual Trouser Alternatives for Denim Addicts

Jeans are great for everyday casual wear. Pretty much anything goes with jeans, so pairing them with tops is easy. You can wear them with western as well as traditional Indian tops and footwear. But this is a blessing as well as a bane because it is easy to get into a denim rut where you only reach out for your jeans whenever you have to go out. I had gotten into such a rut once upon a time and then I realized that I had stopped being creative with my clothing altogether. Since I could wear my jeans with pretty much anything, there was no fun in dressing up anymore. That’s when I started exploring trousers in fabrics other than denim. Today we are going to look at some full-length alternatives to denim that look just as casual but probably even more hip.


The first option in this line is the good old corduroy. These pants are great especially if you like fitted but stretchy styles, as in jeggings. Jeggings are stretch jeans made in the style of leggings and they are very hot right now. Since corduroy is by nature soft and has a bit of a stretch in it, they could make a very comfortable alternative to jeggings. Even otherwise, a straight cut corduroy can perk up your look just like denim can. People usually avoid mixing corduroy clothing with denim, so corduroy pants + denim jacket or vice versa are considered fashion faux pas by some. But hey, if it makes you feel good, go for it! On the other hand, if you are trying to cure your denim addiction, then it may be better to keep away from denim all together on your corduroy days. Choose pants made of thinner corduroy to prevent them from adding bulk to your bottom since this fabric is usually thick. Also, sometimes overuse can fade corduroy in spots such as the buttocks, and that looks not so cool. 😉 Invest in good quality pants and the fabric would not fade as much. You don’t have to limit yourself to the boring, washed out khaki colour – there are tons of colours in the market these days.


Second up in this line are linen trousers. With summers sneaking up on us, stocking up on linen is only time appropriate. With a million or so linen styles available in the market, it is easy to pick up a slouchy pair and end up looking very baggy and wrinkly. The wrinkles are part of the casual look accorded by linen but the fabric should not wrinkle too much. As you move about, sit, stand and stretch, you will cause some wrinkles on the fabric and that is fine. So these pants are not for those who iron even their denims with a crease in the middle. 😉 How do you make linen look chic? If you are wearing linen pants, choose something that is snug, such as racer back tees or ganjis or camisoles. If ganjis or camisoles are not your cup of tea, then try fitted sleeveless tee-shirts in white or another soft colour. Alternatively, cotton camisoles such as those found at Fabindia can make for a relaxed, earthy look. To avoid looking sloppy, do not pair kurtis or very loose tops with these pants. Again, you don’t have to stick to boring khaki or black linen trousers. White linen pants with a tailored look glam casual. If you are a fan of the nautical style, combine white linen pants with a horizontal-striped navy top.

linen trousers

As a third option, you can try cargo pants. They are not limited to the trekking, mountaineering kind of rugged crowd anymore – they are everywhere. Experiment with off-beat styles such as camouflage print and bright colours. Since cargo pants spell casual to the hilt, they look best when worn with stretch tees. You can also pair a fitted top with a vest to balance out the silhouette if you think these pants are adding more bulk to your bottom. There are cargos with a drawstring along the hem and they look quite fashionable. So if you don’t like to walk around with loose cargos flapping about your ankles, you can opt for this style. Colour-co-ordination is not such a problem with cargos, since the whole look is casual. So you don’t have to worry so much about whether the colour of your top goes with your cargos or not. With cargos anything goes! I was just kidding in the previous line. There are some items of clothing that don’t go with cargos. Kurtis, man shirts and billowy tops are items that can make you look quite sloppy if paired with this humble garment. But again, do what you like. Do what looks good on you.

cargo pants

The fourth option is cotton check / plaid for summers. These are very hot right now and can transform your look from ‘denim nerd’ to ‘nerdy chic’ in no time. The thing with checks is that they can make legs look wider than they really are. So they are best worn in slim fits or skinny styles. Pairing up the rest of the clothing with checks is not very easy as they themselves bring in a colour palette of their own. So picking tops and layers from the colour palette of the checks is a safe bet. Keep the top simple for this one. Alternatively, you could wear contrasting colours and still be able to carry off the ensemble. Layering of tops can take this look up a few notches on the style scale. A ganji with a vest would look great for summers. For winters, choose checks in thicker fabric such as a woolen mix and team them up with fitted jackets.

cotton check / plaid

Are you a denim addict?

Image sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5


17 thoughts on “4 Casual Trouser Alternatives for Denim Addicts

  1. Wow.. Great post Sonal… I love linen pants.. They are so comfy and great for summers… :inlove: :inlove:

    I had one plaid skirt which I was very fond of… But I grew it out… 🙁

    Not sure abt corduroy though… :idk: But I love Corduroy jackets for men… :yes:

    1. Thanks M. 🙂 With corduroys, as with most fabrics, the cut and the fit can make or break a look. I feel that corduroys can look very smart in fitted styles. Do give them a try! Corduroys for men are made from much thicker fabric. 😀

  2. I am a jeans addict but I love linen and harem pants. I have infact exactly the same white pants shown in the piccy. Love them. 😀

  3. hi,
    i hv tried the corduroy n cotton check….
    corduroy is best for winters, coz of the material. looks well wen well fitted…
    coton checks r very sexy. :kissed:

    nice post :yes:

    1. Thanks Sush. 🙂 Corduroy fabric can be thin as well. I am wearing me maroonish-red slim fit corduroys today and it is pretty hot here in Bangalore. 😀

  4. thank god for this post. i hope this serves as a wake up call for people (yes including men too!) to move their bums and explore other options than denims. glad to say that i wear all kinds of denims, skirts, trousers etc under the sun.

  5. nice post sonal.. :-))
    i do hve linen, cargo pants but i m die hard denim fan.. got almost all shades.. not only denim pants.. denim jackets, skirts, shirts, a dress, a bag, a cuff and even a shoe in denim fabric.. still can’t resist buying myself denims… 😀

  6. I generally use denims, corduroys and sometimes stretchable cotton..

    In fact, I too have a pair of pure white from United Colors..and I simply love to wear it with colourful tops..

    Plaid/checks would be my last choice…unless I couple it with a good coffee brown shirt..u know those Woodland types..are they called bush shirts or something ?:-) ?:-)

  7. Yeah I am a denim addict, actually I tried some new things a couple of times but I made a fool of myself, they didn’t really go well so I dropped the idea of trying and till now I stick to my idea of Denim jeans which goes fine anyways. My ideas kept jumping in me and I am glad after seeing your collection, I am going to try them in quite some time. 🙂

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