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Best Workout Shorts For Men 2023

May 21, 2023

When you’re shopping for workout shorts, you can easily get distracted by all the features—compression liners, anti-odor technology, performance stretch. Ultimately, the best workout shorts for men appeal to your style and comfort levels, the sports you’ll be doing and your spending budget.

The best workout shorts for men keep you moving comfortably and confidently.

For the best workout shorts overall, we recommend the Vuori Kore Short, which is versatile for a variety of activities with an easygoing fit and excellent sweat-wicking qualities. If you’re looking for a no-fuss basic for gym and training sessions that won't stretch your budget, Nike's Totality Dri-Fit Versatile Shorts are our top affordable choice. Read on to see all of our picks for the best workout shorts for men. And for more gear, check out our stories on the best casual shoes for men and best polo shirts.


Sizes: XS to XXL | Colors: 15 total, including Shade and Ojai | Inseam length: 5, 7.5 and 9 inches | Lined: Both lined/unlined | Materials: Polyester, elastane

The Vuori Kore Short is a popular pick among athletes for a few reasons: It's classic, easy cut and comfortable fit makes it versatile for the gym and outdoor sports. The anti-odor, moisture wicking fabric has elastane to create 4-way stretch and allow for a full range of motion without any tightness or bunching. This short also comes in lined and unlined options, making it an all-around top choice.


Sizes: XS to 4XL | Colors: 22 total, including Black and Royal Blue | Inseam length: 7 inches | Lined: No | Materials: Polyester

Nike's Totality Dri-Fit is a no-frills, get-it-done workout short to keep you moving. Simply tailored with a relaxed fit and knitted fabric, these shorts can handle just about any sports or activity, from running to gym sessions to home workouts. Pockets let you keep essentials with you.


Sizes: XS to XXL | Colors: 8 total, including Misty blue and Stone | Inseam length: 7 inches | Lined: Yes | Materials: Polyester, spandex

Rhone's Mako shorts are lined for comfort and also have a water repellent coating, which means soggy shorts from rain or sweat will not bring you down. The anti-odor treatment helps you get more workouts in between washes, and like the classic gym short, this pair has two open pockets at the hips, plus a zip pocket to stash small valuables like credit card or locker key, and a phone pocket.

Ten Thousand

Sizes: XS to XXL | Colors: 14 total, including Black and Light Grey | Inseam length: 5, 7, 9 inches | Lined: Both lined/unlined | Materials: Polyester, spandex

Ten Thousand's ultra-breathable, ultra-lightweight shorts consistently get high reviews from trainers and athletes. The quick drying shell has 4-way stretch for no-cling performance, and a smooth, no-bunch waistband so you don't get distracted from your routines. These shorts come in both lined and unlined version; the lined ones offer medium compression and a permanent silver ion anti-odor treatment.

Outdoor Voices

Sizes: XS to XL | Colors: 3 total, including Charcoal and Dove | Inseam length: 7 inches | Lined: No | Materials: Polyester, spandex

Outdoor Voices Sunday short is a throwback to classic days of working out in sweats–albeit with an upgrade in performance materials from those old-school cotton team sweats. The heathered material texture feels great on the skin, and works to wick sweat. The loose, comfortable fit and adjustable drawstring closure give you the freedom to move and stretch for easy weekend runs or team sports in the park.

Lululemon Surge Lined Short

Sizes: S to XXL | Colors: 10 in total, including White and Sport Red | Inseam length: 6 inches | Lined: Yes | Materials: Polyester, elastane

Lululemon's workout shorts are known for their pared down designs and for having just enough features to allow you to perform your best. The Surge Short includes a quick-drying mesh liner and a no-bounce pocket for your phone with a headphone cord hole, and you have the ability to stow your shirt in the waistband loop on hot days.

Under Armour

Sizes: XS to 5XL | Colors: 39 total, including Black and Green | Inseam length: 9 inches | Lined: No | Materials: Polyester, elastane

Anyone who has ever worn workout clothes that don't accommodate or stretch with big thighs and powerful quads knows it's an issue that can really interfere with working out. Under Armour's loose and stretchy training shorts don't constrict movement or distract from the task at hand. Perforated fabric side panels and a water repellent coating mean they’re light and airy, and the stretchy waistband moves with you.

Mack Weldon

Sizes: S to XXL | Colors: 4 total, including Monument and True Navy | Inseam length: 7 inches | Lined: Both lined/unlined | Materials: Polyester, spandex

From men's lifestyle brand Mack Weldon, these Stratus shorts are the company's first foray into activewear. The clean-cut shorts have a sweat-wicking fabric that keeps you cooler and less sweaty in the first place and an anti-odor liner to round out the comfortable features. The style is simple and classic, which makes these shorts great for the gym or just running errands.


Sizes: XS to XXL | Colors: 12 total, including Grey and Mauve | Inseam length: 5, 7 inches | Lined: No | Materials: Recycled polyester (or organic cotton and hemp in select colors)

Patagonia knows outdoor sports—and their Baggies shorts are a long lasting, beloved, almost cult-item in which you can complete just about any type of workout–in the gym, pool or outdoor trails. Simply styled, these quick drying nylon shorts have a DWR water repellent coating, an elastic waistband and come in two inseam lengths.


Sizes: 30 to 42 | Colors: 14 total, including Walnut and Smoke | Inseam length: 8, 10 and 12 inches | Lined: No | Materials: Cotton, nylon and spandex

Hikers know that having shorts made from a thicker, abrasion resistant fabric that's also breathable, moves with you, and offers slightly longer inseams hit some of the key requirements for great shorts. This tough pair of shorts can handle a bit of bushwhacking, overhanging branches, and lunches eaten on rocks, while allowing you to move fast and freely. It also sports seven pockets for stashing all the small necessities you’ll need during and post hike.


Sizes: XS to XXL | Colors: 8 total, including Black and Slate Green | Inseam length: 10 inches | Lined: No | Materials: Polyester, elastane

PrAna's sleekly styled long shorts have a wide, elastic waistband for comfort and 4-way stretch for full-spectrum mobility whether you’re doing yoga, Pilates or mat-based exercises. Moisture-wicking, quick drying and outfitted with three pockets, this pair is also rated highly for everyday lounging.

Choosing lined versus unlined shorts is a personal decision, and most people tend to have a strong preference for one or the other, whether you want more support or more freedom. Liners usually sit tight to the skin, meaning they wick sweat well and offer good support, but some people find they are too hot, confining and make it tricky to get in and out of the shorts. Unlined shorts offer more flexibility for you to switch your undergarments at will, and you can wear them more times between washes.

When your gear gets wet from sweat or rain, it's important to dry it as fast as possible (definitely do not leave damp shorts in your gym bag!). Some brands use special silver or gold ion and thread treatments, which help inhibit the growth of microbes–and the stink. But, since you’ll sweat and labor in these shorts, no matter how much anti-odor technology they have, the fabric will build up residue from sweat and skin. So you’ll still need to wash them more frequently than, say, your jeans. Wash them in cold water and hang dry for a clean, fresh finish that helps extend the life of the garment.

The lifespan of your shorts will depend on how much you use them, and how you take care of them. That said, you should expect a quality pair to last at least one year with high use, and longer if you use them infrequently. The first thing to go, however, is usually the stretch quality, so that's where the cool water washes and skipping the dryer will help (dryers accelerate the breakdown of elastic fibers). The right amount to spend on a pair falls anywhere between about 30 to 80 dollars, depending on what you’re looking for as far as features and materials, and longevity of the garment.

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