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Which leather shorts are best?

Leather shorts are a wardrobe staple that can effortlessly slide into any season with a few accessory updates. The best pair is long enough for you to feel comfortable no matter where you go, gives your body a flattering shape and boasts a neutral hue that you can wear with nearly anything in your closet. 

If you are looking for a high waist with a flattering A-line silhouette, the Kendall and Kylie Vegan Leather Paperbag Shorts are a top choice. 

What to know before you buy leather shorts

The material

As the quality of synthetic leather goods has increased, the demand for genuine leather has decreased. Thus, leather has evolved into more of a look than a literal reference to traditional animal hide. 

You might even be hard-pressed to find genuine leather shorts at all. Why buy the cow when you can get a quality synthetic for (so much) less? 

With that, here are some materials used to make leather shorts.

  • Genuine leather: Commonly made from cowhide, but sheep, goat and buffalo hides are also used.
  • Polyurethane: Cotton or polyester is coated in a polymer-based substance and given a textured finish. 
  • Silicone: Materials such as cotton or polyester are coated in silicone and given a leather finish. 

Note that polyurethane and silicone-based leathers are typically called faux or vegan leathers.

The silhouette

The silhouette of your leather shorts lends to their wearability. If you go for a style that is both comfortable and chic, you are far more apt to use them regularly. Here are four popular shapes to consider.  

  • Athletic shorts: These are typically casual activewear, but trendy brands mix athletic styles with lush materials such as vegan leather for an edgy aesthetic. 
  • Bermuda shorts: This style lands a couple of inches above the knee, providing coverage for a fit you can easily dress up or down.
  • Paper bag shorts: These feature a long or short inseam with an A-line cut and a high waist that resembles a cinched paper bag.
  • Skorts: This chic fit hides attached shorts under a skirt for added security and is especially useful for shorter styles. 

The rise

Nearly everyone has a preference regarding where the waistband of their shorts lands on their body. To find a pair of shorts you love, you need to know the category in which your preferred rise sits. Here are three standard rises.

  • Low-rise: Lands at or below your hip and typically measures 7-8 inches high.  
  • Mid-rise: Sits below your navel and measures 8-10 inches high. 
  • High-rise: Rests at or above your navel and measures 10 inches or higher. 

What to look for in quality leather shorts

Neutral colors

A neutral color can instantly elevate your leather shorts to a top pick for every outing. Consider your existing wardrobe as you choose among tan, brown, black and gray hues that complement your favorite pieces.


Pockets are a must-have for those days when you don’t feel like toting a wallet or purse around. The best leather shorts boast pockets that do not add bulk to their silhouette but are roomy enough for your essentials. 


Clothing is an investment, not just with your hard-earned money but in closet space. Even if you want leather shorts for a special occasion, the more versatile your selection, the more wear you will get from them. 

To do that, find the best silhouette for your shape in plain styles that you can transform with the right accessories. 

How much you can expect to spend on leather shorts

You can spend $30-$200 on a pair of faux leather shorts, depending on the brand and the quality of the materials. High-quality shorts made of genuine leather typically cost $200 or more.

Leather shorts FAQ

What style of shorts flatters most body types? 

A. Features such as a high waist and A-line cut with a wide leg carve out a universally flattering shape.

How do you know your size in leather shorts? 

A. While you might be tempted to go with your typical size when shopping online, pay close attention to the manufacturer’s sizing charts and select your size based on those measurements instead. 

What are the best leather shorts to buy?

Top leather shorts

Kendall and Kylie Vegan Leather Paperbag Shorts

Kendall and Kylie Vegan Leather Paperbag Shorts

What you need to know: These vegan leather paper bag shorts look great dressed up or down.  

What you’ll love: These shorts are a polyurethane and polyester blend and give you three color options. They boast vegan leather in a flattering shape with a drawstring closure and come in sizes XS-XL. 

What you should consider: They might be a little too baggy for those who prefer a more fitted style. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top leather shorts for the money

Favastee High Waist Faux Leather Shorts

Favastee High Waist Faux Leather Shorts

What you need to know: These chic shorts boast a universally flattering A-line cut.

What you’ll love: They have deep front pockets with an added back pocket detail. They feature an elastic drawstring closure, a high waist and a slimming wide-leg cut. The material is a polyurethane blend, and they come in sizes S-2XL. 

What you should consider: You must wash them by hand or on a delicate cycle and lay them flat to dry. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Everbellus Faux Leather Shorts

Everbellus Faux Leather Shorts

What you need to know: These soft shorts are versatile enough to blend in with a wide range of wardrobes. 

What you’ll love: These boast a high waist, wide leg and a flat front with pockets. They are polyester, blended with polyurethane and spandex, for a comfortable fit. Their universal cut and sleek style can adapt to most pieces you pair them with, and they come in sizes S-2XL. 

What you should consider: Some might feel their style is a little too plain. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Ella Scott writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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