8 Best Lightweight Utility Canvas Pants for Summer Work


Finding lightweight canvas pants for summer can be critical for those who need a durable work pant, but also need relief in the heat. The Carhartt B151 pants have always been my favorite because they use a lighter weight canvas that is a nice blend of comfort and toughness, but I also use the Wrangler ATG pants (#2 on list) because they are reinforced at the knee.

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These are our choices for best lightweight utility canvas pants for summer work:

  1. Carhartt Men’s B151 Lightweight Canvas Pants (click here to view)
  2. Wrangler ATG Men’s Moisture Wicking Reinforced Utility Pant (click here to view)
  3. Dickies Relaxed Straight-Fit Duck Lightweight Carpenter Pant (click here to view)
  4. Duluth Trading Co. DuluthFlex Fire Hose CoolMax Cargo Pants (click here to view)
  5. Filson Dry Tin Cloth Canvas Pants (click here to view)
  6. Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Lightweight Ranger Pant (click here to view)
  7. *Women’s* Red Ants Pants GSD Work Pants (click here to view)
  8. *Women’s* Carhartt Original Fit Crawford Pants (click here to view)

The Carhartt B151 pants are the lightest-weight summer canvas pants that I personally have been able to find. They use a 7.5-ounce canvas fabric.

As you probably know, most heavy-duty canvas pants use a 12-ounce fabric, which can be very hot to wear during the summer months. If you are searching for lightweight canvas pants, those Carhartt B151 pants might be your best option.

The other pants on this list will use somewhere between an 8 and 10.5-ounce fabric. Yes, they are all lighter in weight than normal 12-ounce cotton canvas pants.

Usually, the heavier the fabric, the more durable the pant. As I mentioned earlier, I also use the Wrangler ATG Canvas Pants (#2 on our list) because they have reinforced knees.

summer-work-pant-decision-guide

I own the top 2 options on this list, so I can give you a good idea what to expect from these summer canvas pants, including photos and weights of the pants I own. Let’s take a closer look at these pants so you can decide what style might be best for you.


Best Lightweight Canvas Pants for Summer

Carhartt Men’s B151 Lightweight Canvas Work Pants

Normal heavy-duty canvas pants are made with a 12-ounce fabric. These Carhartt B151 pants use a lighter-weight 7.5-ounce canvas so it gives you that perfect middle ground between breathability and toughness.

I own this pant in several different colors. Here’s what the B151 pant looks like:

This is the current price of these Carhartt lightweight canvas pants at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). Here’s what you need to know about these pants:

  • Material – Many types of traditional heavyweight work pants use 12-ounce cotton. These lightweight Carhartt canvas work pants use only 7.5-ounce cotton (100% cotton).
  • Fit – No, these pants won’t hug tight against your legs. Plenty of breathing room to move around. These pants have what Carhartt calls an original fit, which is a bit looser in the seat and thighs than some of their other styles. Straight leg opening fits over the top of most all types of work boots.
  • Pockets – I like the front slash pockets that are easy to slip your hand in and out of. These pants also have standard back pockets, side utility pockets, a hammer loop on the left leg, and another small tool band on the right hip.
  • Sweat Wicking – These pants are not sweat wicking. These are best for you if you need something that is tough. If you aren’t so worried about durability, then I’d probably recommend going with a lighter-weight moisture wicking pant. For example, the CQR pants we discuss next, that also have vented knees.

Here’s what my brown Carhartt B151 summer work pants look like. In my experience, these fit true to size:

carhartt-b151-work-pants

Again, yes, this is a canvas material that will still hold up on the job despite being lighter in weight than heavy duty work pants. Here’s a look at the material:

b151-material

My size 32 pants weigh 1.33 pounds:

b151-weight

These pants have a hammer loop on the left leg and also a tool band on the right hip:

b151-tool-loop
b151-tool-band

Another thing I like about these pants is the slash front pockets that are angled in a way that makes it easy to get your hand in and out:

b151-pockets

Click here to buy these Carhartt pants at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). To read more about how Carhartt pants fit, visit our article about Carhartt Pants Sizing.


Wrangler ATG Men’s Reinforced Summer Utility Pants

You’re probably familiar with Wrangler, but you might not know that Wrangler has a specific line of apparel called “ATG by Wrangler” which stands for All Terrain Gear. A lot of Wrangler ATG collection can make for ideal work clothing in outdoor, rugged environments.

In my opinion, these are the best lightweight canvas pants for summer if you need something that still has reinforced knees. The tradeoff is these pants are a bit heavier than some of the other options on this list.

Here’s what these Wrangler ATG Utility Pants look like:

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

  • Material – This reinforced utility pant is constructed of an 8.9-ounce cotton/spandex blend stretch canvas. So although this pant is made with a durable canvas fabric, it still has flexibility for comfort, and is lighter in weight than heavy duty canvas pants.
  • Sweat Wicking – Yes, these pants are moisture-wicking to keep you dry and comfortable. The fabric also offers UPF 30 to help block the sun’s harmful UV rays.
  • Pockets – Securely store your valuables in the zip utility pocket and hidden inside pocket, perfect for a wallet or cell phone. Two front pockets as well as two rear pockets provide even more space for whatever you may need. No hammer loop on these pants.
  • Fit – Featuring a mid-rise and a regular fit through the seat and thigh, this straight-leg pant is made for all-day comfort. Lending to their durability is an articulated, reinforced knee and kick plate. Gusseted crotch for additional comfort.

Here I am wearing these Wrangler ATG pants. In my experience, these fit true to size:

atg-work-pants

These are (in my opinion) the toughest, most durable option on our list. They are made with a comfortable stretch canvas blend that has reinforced knees and a reinforced kick plate:

atg-pants-material
atg-pants-reinforced-knee
atg-pants-kick-plate

But with all that reinforcement, comes extra weight. These are one of the heaviest pants on this list:

atg-pants-weight

But even though these pants weigh more than some of the lighter-weight options on this list, these pants are still built for summer. This material is moisture wicking to help keep you dry, and help pull some heat away from your body.

These pants also have a diamond-shaped crotch gusset for extra comfort while bending and crouching:

atg-pants-gusset

For storage, these pants have a side-zip utility pocket which gives you a secure place to store essentials:

atg-zip-summer-work-pant
atg-pants-back

Again, this just comes down to how much toughness you need. These are a great option for those of you who need reinforced knees on the job.

Click here to buy these Wrangler lightweight utility pants available at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com). These pants are machine washable.


Other Lightweight Canvas Pants to Consider

  • Wrangler Riggs Workwear Men’s Lightweight Ranger Pant – These Wrangler Ranger pants are heavier than other options on this list, but they still use a lighter-weight canvas, but they’re lighter in weight than most canvas pants. Nice option if your job needs a durable fabric. Stretch fabric blend with crotch gusset for comfort and freedom of movement. Click here to view these lightweight cargo pants (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
  • Duluth Trading Co. Men’s DuluthFlex Fire Hose CoolMax Relaxed Fit Cargo Pants – Duluth Trading Co. offers their famous “Fire Hose” work pants in a summer version. These pants are made with 30% “CoolMax” polyester which helps wick away sweat, and helps keep you cool. Made with 7.8-ounce canvas fabric and has a crotch gusset for comfort. Click here to view these Duluth summer work pants.
  • Filson Dry Tin Cloth Canvas Pants – These Filson pants will be very durable, but they are also one of the heaviest on the list. These pants use a 10.5-ounce cotton canvas, and Filson does not finish these with oil to help ensure they remain breathable. Double-layered rear cuff kick plates for added durability. Click here to view these work pants (affiliate link takes you to Filson.com).
  • Dickies Relaxed Straight-Fit Duck Lightweight Carpenter Pant – Dickies is another well-known name in workwear, and their lightweight cotton-duck carpenter pants offer a nice blend of comfort and toughness. These pants use a 9-ounce cotton fabric. These are relaxed-fit pants that have been pre-washed for comfort. Click here to view these pants at Amazon (affiliate link takes you to Amazon.com).
  • *Women’s* Red Ants Pants GSD “Get Stuff Done” Pants – These are great lightweight canvas pants for women. They are still very durable, but made with a lightweight canvas fabric that also has a bit of stretch to it. The lightweight fabric allows your legs to breathe a little bit out there in the summer heat. Offered in both “straight” and “curvy” cut, made in the USA. Click here to view these pants at redantspants.com.

6 Things to Consider When Buying Lightweight Canvas Pants

Crotch Gusset

Buying workwear pants that have a gusseted crotch is a great way to add additional comfort to your work pants.

A crotch gusset is extra material sewn into the crotch to increase your freedom of movement. Not only does it make it more comfortable to crouch, bend, and kneel, it also takes some stress off the crotch, which can help prevent tears and rips.

wrangler-ranger-gusset
gusseted-crotch-work-pants

As you can see above, some gussets will be large inseam gussets that run down near the knee, while others will be diamond-shaped, and confined to the crotch area.

Although the long inseam gussets are better for running/hiking, if you are just looking for comfort while bending and crouching on the job, both will do the trick. To read more, visit our article about the best gusseted work pants.

Lightweight Work Pants

Have you considered a non-canvas lightweight work pant? Yes, they won’t have the toughness of a canvas pant, but they are usually much more breathable and summer friendly.

Many lightweight work pants will use a ripstop fabric so that although the pants are lightweight and breathable, the fabric still discourages rips and tears (canvas vs ripstop). These pants are usually tough enough for most jobs, but there will be exceptions.

To read more about your lightweight options, visit our article about the best summer work pants. For cargo pants, visit our article about the best lightweight cargo pants.

Moisture Wicking Work Pants

Moisture wicking pants are designed to combat sweat. They are made out of a fabric engineered to move sweat away from the body and disperse it across the outside of the fabric in a way which causes it to evaporate quickly.

Not only does this help keep you dry, but the evaporation process naturally helps pull heat away from the body, which can provide a minor amount of temperature relief.

No, it won’t feel like a cool spring day, but it will provide you with some small relief, and as we all know, every little bit counts in the summer heat. If you want moisture-wicking lightweight canvas pants, the Wrangler ATG Pants (#2 on our list) will be a nice option.   

To read more about moisture wicking options, visit our article about the best moisture wicking work pants.

Other Summer Options

I personally like to use a vented knee work pant when the weather gets brutally hot. This is a very sneaky way to find nice relief in the heat. The bad thing is, there isn’t much selection for these types of pants.

If you are interested in this type of pant, this is the vented knee work pant that I use. No, they won’t be as tough as a canvas pant, but they will help circulate air in the heat.

Another option for summer are convertible work pants that zip off at the knee. Yes, these aren’t necessarily for everyone. Some people don’t like the way they look.

Again, no, these types of pants won’t be as durable as lightweight canvas pants, but they do add versatility. To read more, visit our article about the best convertible work pants.


***In this article we discussed the best summer canvas pants. For more lightweight clothing for work, visit our article about the best summer work t-shirts.

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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