10 Best Gusseted Shorts for Comfort on the Job


Gusseted shorts are a great way to take stress off the crotch area while bending and crouching on the job. In my opinion, not enough brands make work shorts with a gusseted crotch. The good news is, several well-known brands do have options to choose from.

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These are our choices for the best gusset shorts to use at work:

  1. Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Ripstop Ranger Cargo Short (click here to view)
  2. Carhartt Men’s Cotton Ripstop Cargo Work Short (click here to view)
  3. Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Carpenter Short (click here to view)
  4. Red Kap Men’s Shop Short (click here to view)
  5. Duluth Trading Co. Men’s DuluthFlex Fire Hose 11″ Cargo Shorts (click here to view)
  6. Tru-Spec Men’s 24-7 Series Ascent Short (click here to view)
  7. Smith’s Workwear Men’s Belted Stretch Gusset Work Short (click here to view)
  8. ATG by Wrangler Men’s Chop Pocket Utility Short (click here to view)
  9. *Women’s* Red Ants Pants Original Work Shorts (click here to view)
  10. *Women’s* 5.11 Tactical Shockwave Shorts (click here to view)

There are several things you will need to consider when choosing gusseted crotch work shorts. Not only will you need to consider the design of the shorts themselves (fabric, pockets, inseam), you’ll also need to decide what type of crotch gusset you prefer.

Many types of gusseted work shorts use a diamond-shaped gusset that is confined to the crotch area and is hard to see from the front or back. But there are other, larger types of gussets as well.

In this article let’s take a closer look at the best gusseted shorts so you can choose a style that fits your needs. Let’s first discuss the different types of crotch gussets, and how they help.


Types of Crotch Gussets

As you probably know, a crotch gusset is extra material sewn into the crotch to add comfort and flexibility to your shorts. But not all gussets are made the same, and the size of a gusset can vary dramatically.

Diamond Shaped Gusset

The most common type of gusset found in work shorts is a diamond-shaped gusset that is usually confined to the crotch area and does not extend the full length of the leg. Here I am wearing an example of this type of diamond-shaped gusset:

wrangler-cargo-shorts-gusset
wrangler-riggs-denim-shorts-gusset

Full Length Gusset

But there are also shorts that have a more dramatic gusset that can run the entire length of the shorts. Here I am wearing an example of this type of full-length gusset:

atg-wrangler-shorts-gusset

This type of gusset is also often referred to as a “full inseam gusset” or a “running gusset”.

As I mentioned above, in work shorts, it is more typical to find the diamond-shaped gusset. Both add comfort, and I honestly have a tough time noticing a significant difference between the two when I’m on the job.

The full-length gussets can be a bit more responsive, and can be common in types of tactical shorts and types of hiking shorts. First responders that wear tactical shorts need responsiveness, and the ability to freely run, and so the full length gusset is often used for extra freedom of movement.

For other workers who just need a gusset for bending and crouching while working, the diamond-shaped gusset provides the needed space and does not take up the whole length of the leg. Again, in my experience, both can be fine for most all types of jobs.


Best Gusset Shorts for Work

Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Ripstop Ranger Cargo Short

Many are familiar with Wrangler, but did you know Wrangler has a specific line of apparel dedicated to work clothing called Wrangler Riggs Workwear? And the Wrangler Riggs Workwear Ranger Shorts are a popular style of work shorts that do have a gusseted crotch.

Here’s what these Wrangler Riggs Men’s Ranger Shorts look like:

This is the current price of these Wrangler cargo gusset shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these shorts:

  • Material – The Ranger cargo short is an ideal option for surviving summer days on a tough jobsite. Resistant to rips and tears, the 10-ounce ripstop cotton construction features reinforced contrast taping on the pockets for enhanced durability.
  • Fit – In my experience, these shorts fit true to size. They have a relaxed fit through the seat and thigh along with a gusseted crotch for increased range of movement.
  • Type of Gusset – These shorts have a diamond shaped gusset confined to the crotch area. The gusset does not run the length of the leg and is hard to see while wearing these shorts.
  • Pockets – These shorts have two front pockets, two rear pockets (lined with 1000-Denier DuPont Cordura), two cargo pockets with button snap flaps, an oversized watch pocket, and a right-leg hammer loop.
  • What Makes These Shorts Unique – Toughness. In my experience, these are the most well-rounded cargo work shorts for durability. Made with 10-ounce ripstop fabric, they have Cordura lined back pockets, and a tape measure reinforcement on the front pocket.

These are my go-to cargo work shorts. These shorts are made with a dependable material that, in my experience, holds up well over time.

best-cargo-work-shorts
wrangler-cargo-shorts

As mentioned above, these shorts have a diamond-shaped crotch gusset that provides extra space for comfortable bending and crouching, but is confined to just the crotch area:

wrangler-cargo-shorts-gusset

These are sturdy work shorts, and my size 32 weighs well over a pound:

wrangler-cargo-shorts-weight

The main takeaway is these Wrangler shorts are built to last. Not only are they made with ripstop fabric and have a tape measure reinforcement on the front pocket, they also have durable back pockets that are lined with 1000 denier DuPont Cordura:

wrangler-ranger-cordura-pockets

Click here to buy these Wrangler gusseted shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). In my experience, these shorts fit true to size.


Carhartt Men’s Cotton Ripstop Cargo Work Short

It’s impossible to discuss workwear and not mention Carhartt. They offer a wide range of work shorts, including gusseted crotch cargo shorts. These shorts are quite similar to the Wrangler Ranger shorts we discussed first, with a few small differences.

Here’s what these Carhartt shorts look like:

This is the current price of these Carhartt cargo ripstop shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these shorts:

  • Material – The 9.5-ounce 100% ripstop cotton construction of this short is designed to bear the brunt of tough jobs, resisting snags, rips, and tears. Reinforced front ledge pockets provide added durability, helping to minimize wear and tear.
  • Pockets – These shorts have two front pockets, two rear pockets, and two generously-sized cargo pockets with snap closures. There is a hammer loop on the left leg.
  • Type of Gusset – These shorts have a diamond shaped gusset confined to the crotch area. The gusset does not run the length of the leg and is hard to see while wearing these shorts.
  • Fit – These gusset shorts have a comfortable, relaxed fit through the seat and thigh with an 11-inch inseam.

These shorts are actually very comparable to the Wrangler Riggs Ranger shorts we discussed first. Which is better? Truthfully, it’s very close. I’ve stuck with the Wrangler shorts because I just found that I liked the design.

But these Carhartt short are also very tough, and built to last. They have Cordura-lined front pockets and are made with durable ripstop fabric.

One detail that sticks out about these shorts in a positive way compared to the Wrangler Ranger shorts I wear, is these shorts have deep front ledge pockets, that make it very easy to get your hand in and out of your pockets. Might be worth considering.

Click here to buy these Carhartt work shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These shorts are machine washable.


Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Carpenter Short

Our first two options are both cargo work shorts, but if you are looking for gusseted carpenter shorts, you do have options. These Wrangler Riggs Carpenter Shorts have the same diamond-shaped gusset as the Wrangler Ranger Shorts we discussed first.

Here’s what these Wrangler Carpenter Shorts look like:

This is the current price of these Wrangler carpenter gusset shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these shorts:

  • Material – Built for both utility and maximum comfort, these shorts are made with 100% cotton ripstop. Triple-needle stitching in the important areas for reinforcement. A 10.5-inch inseam provides sufficient coverage down near the knee.
  • Pockets – These shorts have two front scoop pockets, two Cordura®-lined back pockets, an oversized watch pocket, and one right leg cell phone utility pocket.
  • Type of Gusset – These shorts have a diamond shaped gusset confined to the crotch area. The gusset does not run the length of the leg and is hard to see while wearing these shorts.
  • Tool Loops – Yes, these shorts have a hammer loop on the right leg and a utility band on the left leg.

These are my go-to denim work shorts. Here’s what mine look like:

wrangler-riggs-denim-shorts-tool-loop
wrangler-riggs-denim-shorts-gusset

If you are looking for a carpenter shorts that have a gusseted crotch, these are, in my opinion, your best option. Mine fit true to size.

Click here to buy these Wrangler Riggs gusseted crotch shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These shorts are machine washable.


ATG by Wrangler Men’s Chop Pocket Utility Short

As we discussed at the top of the article, there are different types of crotch gussets. The first three shorts we discussed all have a diamond-shaped gusset that doesn’t run the full length of the short.

If you are looking for a pair of utility shorts that have a full-length gusset, then these Wrangler Utility Shorts are a nice option. Here’s what they look like:

This is the current price of these Wrangler gusset shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these shorts:

  • Material – These shorts use a cotton/spandex blend which gives the material stretch and flexibility.
  • Pockets – These shorts have oversized front pockets for extra storage space, and a zip-pocket in the back for a safe place to store essentials.
  • Type of Gusset – These shorts have a full-length running gusset which might make them perfect for those of you who need extra freedom of movement.
  • Fit – These shorts have a regular fit, but please note these are short length work shorts. The inseam length on these shorts is 8 inches, which means it will finish above the knee for most.

Here I am wearing these shorts. Notice how the gusset runs the full length of the inseam:

atg-wrangler-shorts-gusset

These shorts have a durable stretch fabric that is comfortable, but still tough enough for a work site:

atg-wrangler-shorts-material

Overall, thanks to the design and the 8-inch inseam, these shorts don’t weigh very much. Here’s the weight of my size 32:

atg-wrangler-shorts-weight
atg-wrangler-shorts-back

Click here to buy these Wrangler gusseted crotch shorts available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These shorts are machine washable.


Other Gusset Shorts to Consider

  • Red Kap Men’s Shop Short – Red Kap is famous for shop workwear, and they have a pair of gusset shorts that are very popular. These shorts use a stretch fabric blend with a stretch waistband. Classic shop-short. Plenty of storage, with a no-scratch design. And yes, these shorts have a full length inseam gusset for increased freedom of movement. Click here to view these Red Kap gusset shorts (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
  • Duluth Trading Co. Men’s DuluthFlex Fire Hose 11″ Cargo Shorts – Duluth Trading Co. is another trusted name in workwear, and they are well-known for making comfortable workwear. These shorts have the “Fire Hose” material for toughness, but have spandex added for flexibility. They have 11 total pockets and a relaxed fit that won’t hug tight. Yes, gusset added to crotch for extra comfort. Click here to view these Duluth gusseted crotch work shorts.
  • *Women’s* Red Ants Pants Original Work Shorts – Red Ants Pants is a premium women’s workwear brand that makes their clothes here in the USA. This is a focused brand that offers workwear essentials, including these gusseted shorts. Made with heavy-duty 12-ounce cotton canvas, these shorts are offered in both a curvy and straight fit. Click here to view these gusseted work shorts by Red Ants Pants.

3 Ways Gusseted Shorts Help on the Job

  • Bending – This the most obvious benefit of wearing gusseted shorts. A crotch gusset provides extra space and comfort when bending and crouching on the job. This helps improve your range of motion while working. Also, consider stretch work shorts.
  • Operating – Another underappreciated way that gusset shorts help on the job is when you are driving or operating equipment. Ever had your pants ride up tight while sitting in the driver’s seat? A crotch gusset gives you some breathing room.
  • Cost – A gusseted crotch can also help save you some money over the long term. A gusseted crotch takes stress off the inseams and helps your workwear shorts last longer. Of course, comfort is the main reason to choose gusset shorts for work, but long-term cost savings are a potential extra bonus.

Paul Johnson

Paul is a lead content creator for Workwear Command. He has had several blue-collar jobs which have provided him a wide range of experience with tools and gear. He also has a business degree and has spent time in business casual office settings.

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