Zip off work pants provide you versatility on the job to help you adapt with the temperature as the day progresses. When cool mornings turn into hot afternoons, convertible pants can provide you with some easy relief.
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These are our choices for the best convertible work pants:
- Carhartt Men’s Force Extremes Convertible Pants (click here to view)
- CQR Men’s Water Repellent Convertible Cargo Pants (click here to view)
- Columbia Men’s Silver Ridge Ii Convertible Stretch Pants (click here to view)
- Duluth Trading Co. Men’s DuluthFlex Convertible DOTF Pants (click here to view)
- Eddie Bauer Men’s Guide Pro Convertible Pants (click here to view)
- FREE SOLDIER Men’s Outdoor Zip Off Cargo Pants (click here to view)
- *Women’s* Columbia Saturday Trail II Convertible Pant (click here to view)
- *Women’s* BALEAF Hiking Convertible Cargo Pants (click here to view)
You’ll want to consider what type of material you want, and what type of pockets you need. Many types of convertible pants use a moisture wicking fabric that moves sweat away from your body to help keep you cool and dry.
All of these pants have zip off legs, but the inseam of the short can vary from brand to brand. In my experience, most convertible work pants have a slimmer fitting short compared to normal work shorts.
Many of these pants will also have a gusset to add comfort and extra range of motion to the pants.
In this article let’s take a closer look at the convertible work pants on this list so you can find a style that fits your needs. Let’s also discuss what you’ll want to consider when buying these zip off work pants.
Best Convertible Work Pants with Zip Off Legs
Carhartt Men’s Force Extremes Convertible Pants
Carhartt is obviously a well-known workwear brand, and one of their strengths is they offer a wide variety of work apparel. And yes, they do make zip off work pants.
Here’s what these Carhartt Men’s Force Extremes Pants look like:
This is the current price of these Carhartt convertible work pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these pants:
- Material – The material is made from cotton/polyester fabric blend. This blend lets the material have some give while being very durable. These pants are also fast drying to help keep you dry.
- Inseam – Yes, these are zip off work pants. When converted into shorts, this pair has an 11″ inseam, stopping just above the knee.
- Fit – The fit is made with a relaxed seat and thigh as well as a gusseted crotch. The knee areas are built for the full range of motion, so whether you’re relaxing or on the move, these pants will not become a hindrance.
- Pockets – Thee are two front pockets along with a zipper-secured left pocket hidden in the front left one, two back pockets, and a cell phone pocket located on the right leg.
Click here to buy these Carhartt zip off work pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These pants are machine washable.
CQR Men’s Water Repellent Convertible Cargo Pants
CQR is a popular brand for lightweight, yet durable, work pants, and these CQR Men’s Convertible Cargo Pants are a great option if you are looking for water repellent zip off work pants.
Here’s what these Wrangler Riggs Men’s Ranger Shorts look like:
This is the current price of these CQR convertible work pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these pants:
- Material – The stretch fabric is made from 64% cotton, 30% nylon, and 6% spandex, allowing you to move freely without feeling restricted.
- Fit – They are built for a loose fit to allow for comfort as well as maximum mobility. The ergonomic cut around the knees provides plenty of room for mobility.
- Pockets – This pair of pants has two front slash pockets, two back pockets that are secured with flap closures, and two above-knee cargo pockets with zippers.
- Unique Details – Along with an elastic waistband, each pair of pants comes with a belt.
Click here to buy these CQR zip off work pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These pants are machine washable.
Columbia Men’s Silver Ridge Ii Convertible Stretch Pants
Columbia specializes in making outdoor activewear. If you are looking for zip off pants to use for both hiking and work, these Silver Ridge pants will be a great option.
Here’s what these Columbia Men’s Silver Ridge Convertible Stretch Pants look like:
This is the current price of these Columbia convertible work pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these pants:
- Material – These lightweight cargo pants are made from 95% nylon and 5% elastane stretch fabric blend to provide you adequate range of motion on the job.
- Weather Protection – These pants are water resistant and also offer UPF 50 sun protection.
- Inseam – When converted to shorts, they have an inseam of 10”, stopping around the top of the knee.
- Pockets – The two hand pockets on the front along with a zipper-secured security pocket, two welt pockets on the back, and the right leg flap-closed cargo pocket provide plenty of room to store your essentials.
Click here to buy these Columbia zip off pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These pants are machine washable.
Other Convertible Pants to Consider
- Eddie Bauer Men’s Guide Pro Pants – These Eddie Bauer Guide Pro pants have zip off legs and are made with a nylon/spandex stretch fabric blend. These pants have a water-repellent finish and offer UPF 50+ sun protection. They feature two side zip cargo pockets. Converted shorts have 10″ inseam. Click here to view these shorts (affiliate link takes you to eddiebauer.com).
- FREE SOLDIER Men’s Outdoor Zip Off Cargo Pants – These FREE SOLDIER zip off leg pants are made with a lightweight nylon/spandex stretch blend and are designed to wick sweat to help keep you cool and dry. They have a water-resistant coating and offer UV protection. They feature a gusseted crotch for extra comfort and freedom of movement. Click here to view these pants (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
- *Women’s* Columbia Saturday Trail II Pants – If you are searching for women’s convertible pants to use for work, these Columbia pants give you a comfortable, durable option. These pants are made with a stretch fabric blend that won’t restrict your movement. They are water-repellent and convert to a 10″ inseam short. Zipper pocket for storing essentials. Click here to view these women’s convertible pants at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
6 Thing to Consider When Buying Convertible Pants for Work
Because many types of convertible pants are used for things like hiking, most use a stretch fabric blend for increased comfort.
It is also very common for these pants to have a water-repellent finish and offer some level of sun protection. Obviously, the details can differ a bit brand to brand.
For work, I appreciate a fabric that is moisture wicking and will pull sweat away from my body. Not only does this keep you dry, but the evaporation process naturally pulls heat away from the body to help keep you a big cooler.
To read more, visit our article about the best moisture wicking work pants.
You will definitely want to consider the inseam of your converted shorts. It is very common for these types of pants to convert to a 10″ inseam short. Obviously, this can vary by brand.
And your height affects this, but a 10″ inseam will often hit near the top of the knee. Just be sure to consider the length of the shorts once converted.
Also, in my experience most convertible shorts tend to be a bit slimmer than regular shorts, so something to keep in mind. This is where it helps to have a stretch fabric with a crotch gusset.
If you are using convertible work pants to combat hot weather, you do have other options. Some types of regular work pants are built to stand up to the heat better than others.
Obviously, a moisture wicking fabric helps. But the weight of the material can go a long ways in determining how much heat the pants retain, and some options have vented knees to release heat.
A crotch gusset is extra material sewn into the crotch to add comfort and flexibility to your pants.
The size of the gusset can vary. Some styles will be smaller (diamond shaped), while others will run the full length of the short/pant.
Many types of convertible pants use a gusset because these types of pants are commonly used in active environment that need freedom of movement. To read more about gussets, visit our article about the best gusseted work pants.
I frequently use a vented work pant that has vents tucked on the backside of the knee. If you don’t want to use convertible work pants, then these vented pants might give you some need air circulation.
To read more, visit my article about the best vented work pant.
Zip Off Work Pants Disadvantages
Zip off work pants do offer you several advantages and allow you to remain versatile as the temperature fluctuates during the day, but there are a few drawbacks.
In comparison to normal work pants, these types of pants will not be quite as durable. If you work in harsh environment, you may need something tougher.
It’s also very difficult to find convertible work pants that have a tool loop and dual utility pockets. For those who rely on a hammer loop, you will need to stick with traditional work pants instead of using convertible pants.