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The Best Black Work Pants // 8 Pairs Compared

March 12, 2020

By:

Erin Schrader

We frequently get asked what our favorite black pants are. Well friends, it’s been a few years since any of us wore black work pants on a daily basis. When we worked in a traditional office setting, it was the go-to look for several of us, but now it looks a lot more like leggings and an oversized sweater. So to give you the most authentic answer on our favorite pairs, we figured it was time to take another look at all the pairs we love [or used to love] and see how we really feel when pairing them against one another!

Rather than showing them on one body, we wanted to give you some different sizing options, so both Steph and Erin are showing off most pairs! Erin is typically a size 2 and has a 27 inch inseam, and Steph is typically a size 10 Petite with a 26 inseam [sometimes 27 with heels!]. You’ll notice that due to their different shapes and sizes, there are different feelings about each pair, but we were able to narrow it down to a few favorites!

So without further ado, let’s get to our findings! Did your favorite pair make our top picks?

PS If you’re new around here, we love doing these product comparisons and trying several brands to bring you the best! You can find all of our product comparisons here! 

The Black Work Pants We Tested:

What We Looked At

We ranked each pair on a 1-5 scale [1 being the lowest, 5 being the highest] for both overall fit and quality. We also then asked the question of “would you buy these” as well as noted whether they attracted lint or not [note, the only pair that collected lint that was harder to wipe off was Old Navy, so almost all passed that test!].

Our Favorites

Erin’s Favorite: White House Black Market

White House Black Market Comfort Stretch Slim Ankle Pants  [size up if in between, Erin is wearing a 2, Steph is wearing 10 Petite]  // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

Erin’s favorite pair was the White House Black Market Comfort Stretch Slim Ankle Pant [say that five times fast]. And when they call them comfort stretch they aren’t kidding! This pair seriously felt like you could do lunges in them [yes, we tried], and hit at a great place for high rise! They’re a bit more of a straight leg fit, but still cropped which made them more flattering! The only issue we had with them was a concern with quality – Steph’s pair came with a bent closure clasp, which made them near impossible to actually close.

Steph’s Favorite: Loft

LOFT Slim Pencil Pants [TTS, Erin is wearing a 2, Steph is wearing 10 Petite] // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

Steph’s favorite pair was the Loft Slim Pencil Pant! They’re more of a straight fit all the way down rather than fitted/tighter. They have a little bit of stretch to them, but nothing overwhelming. The waist did a great job of really holding you in without feeling like you’re going to burst of out of them [I sure hope that makes sense to you like it did to us]. If you’re going to get these with the intent of wearing them with flats, we’d recommend ordering a petite size to crop them a bit! Note: Erin didn’t love these, because they were a bit too loose down the leg for her preference!

Coming in 2nd and 3rd:

Liverpool

Liverpool Kelsey Knit Trousers [Size down if in between, Erin is wearing a 2 Petite, Steph is wearing a 10 Petite but would prefer 8 Petite] // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

We have been longtime lovers of Liverpool, and we still love the Kelsey Trousers even though they ended up not coming in 1st place for either girl. As soon as Steph and Erin put them on they both said things like “wow I love these” and “I love putting these on… they feel so good”. So it’s safe to say, we still love these. They’re just a bit more of a relaxed fit than the pairs that ended up being Erin and Steph’s favorites. So if you’re looking for a more relaxed fit, we’d highly recommend these! ‘The fabric feels great, and has a lot of stretch to it. Steph said that if she was looking at comfort alone, she’d hands down pick the Liverpool pair, but she liked the appearance of the Loft pair better!

Ann Taylor

Ann Taylor  The Ankle Pant In Cotton Twill [size up if in between, Erin is wearing a 2, Steph is wearing 10 Petite]  // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

Rounding out our top picks is the Ann Taylor The Ankle Pant. As the name implies, they’re an ankle length pant, so they’re pretty cropped and have a bit of a flare to them. So if you’re taller, these might not be great on you as they may be too short! Also, because of the flare, we’d recommend these for heels, not flats! This pair is made of a thicker fabric that doesn’t feel like it’ll show any rumps, bumps, or pant lines, and they also have a nice wide band at the top! The material for the majority of the pant isn’t extremely stretchy, but they still move fine [and the waistband is a bit stretchy!] Overall, these were good pants, that felt like they’d hold up well over time and be a great pair to keep in your closet!

The Pants That Didn’t Make The Cut

Old Navy

Old Navy All-New High-Waisted Pixie Ankle Pants [ TTS, Erin is wearing a 2, Steph is wearing a 10 Petite] // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

If you’re on a budget, the Old Navy All New High-Waisted Pixie Ankle would be our pair that we would suggest, BUT make sure you go into it knowing that these a] are a very skinny pair, and b] are going to show every bump and wrinkle. You’ll most definitely want to have a seamless thong on. However, as long as you go into it with that mindset, they are very comfortable and we actually do like them for what they are! We consider these to be more like work legging than a work pant. They’d be great if you were up and down all day. One more note: this was the only pair to collect lint that we were unable to easily wipe up with our hands.

Express

Express Mid Rise Ankle Columnist Pant [TTS, Erin is wearing a 2, Steph is wearing 10 Short] // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

Love Express, don’t love these pants. We tried the Mid-Rise Columnist Ankle Pant, and think that if we had a high rise pair, maybe that would make them fit better. But especially on Erin, the crotch area was all wrong, and they hit at the wrong spot on the waist. She was pretty quick to take them off, although both girls did find them to be comfortable! 😉 Steph thought this pair was okay, but they weren’t her favorite pair. It almost looked like Erin and Steph were wearing two different pairs of pants, due to the petite length that Steph had on. If you were going to order this pair and hoping to wear them with flats, we’d definitely suggest ordering a petite length for appearance!

Banana Republic

Banana Republic Modern Sloan Skinny-Fit Washable Pant [Size up! Erin is wearing a 2 but would have gone up, and the 1o Petite did not work for Steph]  // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

We tried the Banana Republic Modern Sloan Skinny-Fit Washable Pants and honestly, they reminded us of thick, fleece lined leggings [without actually being fleece lined]. They had a little bit of stretch to them in the legs, but no stretch in the waist. We didn’t like the fabric at all, and the fit was weird especially through the knees and with flats. These were a big no for us.

JCrew

J.Crew Ruby Pant [Size up! Erin is wearing a 2 but would have gone up, and the 10 Petite did not work for Steph] // CeCe Tie Sleeve Top [TTS, Erin is wearing a Small, Steph is wearing a Large] // Sam Edelman Hazel Pointy Toe Pump // Micah Pointed Toe Closed Loafers

Unfortunately, another “heck no” was the JCrew Ruby Pant. This pair was extremely restrictive, especially in the front and waist area, which would not be fun to sit in all day. When you bend down, they just feel like they’re pulling instead of flexing. The legs do feel like they have some stretch to them, but nowhere around the hips/waist. If you have carry your weight in the front of your waist area, or have any sort of pooch there, these are not good for you.


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