The Search for the Best Joggers

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festive yet comfy holiday outfit from Chico's
Wearing sequined joggers and a cashmere sweater from Chico's

I've been a fan of the jogger trend for a while now. I like the relaxed fit, the interesting silhouette, the ability to go from silk to sequins to suede to sweatpant material in the same exact type of garment appealed to me.

over 40 fashion blog
Wearing crepe joggers and a faux leather moto jacket, both from Dia & Co.

I've worn them dozens of times over the past couple of years, but there has been one pair I have worn more and longer than any other.

The Best Joggers I Own

universal standard suiting 1
Wearing the cabi Pivot Joggers with a Universal Standard blazer and Chico's tee

About three seasons ago, cabi had a pant called their Pivot Jogger. It was a black knit jogger with front pockets, back faux besom pockets, a wide waistband and were from a fabric that a year later, even through a pandemic and me washing and drying them at least weekly, they still look and fit great.

I find them to be the best joggers I own because all of these details, plus the fabric is more refined than many knit pants, making them easier to dress up or down.

woman in a denim jacket and black knit joggers crossing the street
Wearing the cabi Pivot Joggers with a vintage Levi's denim jacket

Thing is, cabi no longer has this jogger. They have a variation of it this year, but it's only in an olive green color. And while cabi has extended their size range on some pieces, these pants only go up to size XL (for reference I usually wear a Large or 14 and wear the cabi Pivot Joggers in Large).

The Best Joggers for Loungewear

soma joggers review
Wearing Soma joggers with a Soma tank and pullover

I have these joggers from Soma and I love them too. They have held up pretty well to multiple washings and trips through the dryer, but they are more of an athleisure vibe and not as versatile for looks outside the home.

cabi Clothing Fall 2019 labor day travel capsule body 2 1a 1
The cabi Pivot Joggers with the Chance Jacket and a Dagne Dover fanny pack

I wear joggers all the time. I prefer them to leggings for being around the house, and if it's a good pair of joggers, they can go from being on the couch with a fleece hoodie and fuzzy socks to out and about with trendy sneakers and a denim jacket, heels and a silk blouse, or ankle boots and a blazer.

universal standard leather moto jacket review
Wearing the cabi Pivot Joggers with La Canadienne Boots and a Universal Standard moto jacket

Since I wear my Pivot Joggers so often but they're no longer available and not in a broad enough size range, I was on the hunt for a new pair of joggers that achieved the same thing but were available at minimum up to a size 20.

Universal Standard Hathaway Joggers Review

loft velvet tuxedo jacket

Blazer: Satin Velvet Blazer c/o LOFT (14) | T-Shirt: The Coathangers (L) | Joggers: Universal Standard (XS) | Boots: La Canadienne | Necklace: Baublebar

These are the Hathaway Joggers from Universal Standard, which are available in sizes 00-40. Universal Standard has four different jogger styles – a dressy wool, a sweatpant fabric, an athletic fabric, and a Pima cotton French terry.

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The three knit styles of joggers from Universal Standard are almost always out of stock; I've signed up to be notified when they're back in stock and by time I've had a chance to get to the website they were sold out. So when one style – the Hathaway came back in stock and was still there when I visited the US site, I bought them. I got my usual size XS (10/12) with Universal Standard.

the coathangers t shirt

These are not like the cabi Pivot joggers. The fabric isn't as tightly woven, doesn't have that same sheen that makes them able to dress up, and it's not as saturated of black color. The waistband isn't as wide and it rolls over. There is a thick seam in the center from navel to back that makes the joggers automatically look more casual. And unfortunately, when I washed and dried them, they shrank a bit.

universal standard hathaway joggers

My Search for the Best Joggers

The previous paragraph may make you think I hate them. I don't, I still think they're good, but they're not what I am looking for. Maybe one of the other US joggers would be a better match, maybe there's another brand out there that has what I am looking for. And I am asking for your recommendations for the best joggers that have these features:

  • Available at a minimum in sizes 0-20. Would prefer a broader size range and extra points for any style that comes in lengths or tall/petite sizing.
  • Has pockets. At least front pockets, but wouldn't be mad at back besom pockets, whether they are real or faux.
  • Wide waistband that doesn't fold over
  • Can survive the washer and the dryer
  • Thick enough that it doesn't show VPL for a basic pair of briefs
  • Available in solid black. No heathering, no sparkle, no contrast stitching or contrast ties. Extra points if also available in other non-heathered colors (navy, dark brown, olive, cream, maybe a purple or plum)
  • Extra points if it has a top or jacket in the same fabric to create a coordinated ensemble

What I Wore With The Joggers

LOFT velvet tux jacket

As for the rest of this look, I'm glamming up the ordinary. The black velvet tux blazer is from LOFT. I mentioned it in this Friday Shop about where to find velvet pantsuits and LOFT was kind enough to send me one. I have the size 14, I think it runs a bit snug but is cute and a great way to glam up the ordinary or quickly create a festive ensemble.

baublebar michaela curb necklace

The t-shirt is for the band The Coathangers. I've been admiring black graphic tees like the ones from Kenzo and Anine Bing and thought… why not get the same look and support a band that hasn't been able to tour this year.

I saw The Coathangers at the Hopscotch Music Festival a few years ago and became an instant fan and have seen them twice since. I thought the graphic was cool and loved the colors against black and was happy to buy it from a merch store the band recommended.

loft tux jacket

The boots are my La Canadiennes that I purchased last year. The leather is soft, but also waterproof. They have front lacing but also a side zipper for easy on and off. I added a pair of my favorite insoles to make them even more comfortable as well as warm. The necklace is from Baublebar.

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24 Comments

  1. January 6, 2021 / 9:00 pm

    I have become obsessed with drop crotch joggers in the last few years. My search for the perfect ones continue also!!!

  2. Rebecca
    December 11, 2020 / 12:27 pm

    Thanks for all the suggestions in how to style joggers in a more upscale style. I have a few pair but I tend to wear them just around the house. I have one crepe-like pair from Lysse that I could certainly style up, and I am awaiting a shipment of the wool joggers from Universal Standard (I tried them and they are gorgeous, but I needed to go up a size). But I see I can go with a more basic pair and still jazz it up!

  3. Bonnie Grove
    December 11, 2020 / 10:54 am

    Joggers have been my JAM this year! The cabi ones are amazing, I have the original black, the leopard print, and the olive green. They also did one as a New Arrival this season in black again but they have cargo pockets on the sides. And OMG, those Soma Joggers??? Heaven! I wear mine on rotation with the black cabi ones. I found Vuori Joggers through The Mom Edit, and they are super soft but a little more lightweight. I don’t really wear them out of the house, and I’ve actually worn them to sleep in. And my bestie just got me a gold SEQUIN pair from Anthro! I’m going to rock them this weekend for my big 60th birthday!!! What else is there to do during a pandemic??

  4. Claire
    December 11, 2020 / 10:49 am

    What makes something a jogger versus a yoga pant? Leg style? Do joggers have elastic at the bottom? and How did I miss the memo on joggers or is it just that I live in a hot climate and haven’t needed pants in months.

  5. Lisa
    December 10, 2020 / 9:43 pm

    At some point, CABI had the joggers in leopard. I have them in all three colors and agree! They are amazing!!

  6. Karmen
    December 10, 2020 / 7:20 pm

    It sounds like you may like the ‘dressy sweatpants’ from Encircled. A Canadian sustainable company, goes to XXL, which means good for the planet and good for a US chequebook. Here’s the international link. https://www.encircled.co/collections/the-dressy-sweatsuit

  7. Karen O
    December 10, 2020 / 7:09 pm

    I’ve got a few joggers from Athleta that I absolutely love. They’re a few years old though and the style no longer seems to be made, but they are holding up really well. For the record, I’m only 5′ and usually wear a Large Petite or 14P and can appreciate that Athleta carries those sizes. Here’s one of their joggers that meets most of your criteria. I don’t own them so I can’t vouch for how thick or thin the fabric is and I probably wouldn’t get them as I have issues with higher waists but they’re offered in 7 different colors and 4 different size fits (regular, petite, tall, and plus).

    https://athleta.gap.com/browse/product.do?pid=531288002&cid=1164747&pcid=1046322&vid=1&nav=meganav%3ABOTTOMS%3ACATEGORIES%3AJoggers%20%26%20Sweatpants&grid=pds_31_52_1#pdp-page-content

  8. Marisa
    December 10, 2020 / 5:12 pm

    I live in the Cooper joggers from US. I have four pairs of them and for me they hit all your bullets.

  9. December 10, 2020 / 3:48 pm

    I totally agree with you about the Cabi Pivot joggers being the best ever . I have them in the black, a leopard print, and the olive green. They are wonderful for all the reasons you stated. I also have the Soma joggers in block and like them a lot too, but they are more lay around the house joggers. I have not found any that I like as well as those two brands. Let us know what you discover!

  10. Carlyn
    December 10, 2020 / 2:13 pm

    The cabi joggers really are perfect.

  11. Barb
    December 10, 2020 / 10:47 am

    Have you tried Talbots? I’m loving their yoga pants, although they are more of a straight leg. The fabric is great and they have a wide waistband that doesn’t roll down as well as side pockets that zip. Maybe they have something similar in a jogger style.

  12. Pascale
    December 10, 2020 / 10:42 am

    Are you kidding? I think it was a post of yours that got me to take a chance on the Spanx faux leather joggers. I have worn them every which way this year, through temps ranging from freezing to 70s. I usually pop on a sweater, but I’ve also rocked them with a silk top and blazer.
    I keep suggesting they make them in other colors.
    I did find a pair of tan faux leather ones at Target (A New Day brand) for <$30 that seems pretty darn good as well. Even if I have to trash them before 2021 I have definitely gotten my value out of them.
    I guess faux leather isn't as versatile, although I cannot argue that. And I do have a couple of pairs of sparkly ones coming from a place I never heard of before, so I will let you know.

    • December 10, 2020 / 10:46 am

      I totally should have included them! I didn’t because I was like, oh they’re faux leather but they are the shizzzzz and I LOVE them! Good point!

      • Mary O'Driscoll
        December 10, 2020 / 11:50 am

        Oooh. Off to Target I go.

  13. Mary O'Driscoll
    December 10, 2020 / 10:21 am

    Interesting thoughts — thanks so much. I’ve just started wearing joggers, so that likely means they are on the downside, trend-wise. I bought mine from JJill — their Fit On-the-Go joggers that have a nice satin-y finish and a warm inside layer. In gray, and they are great for the few times I’m out/about running errands. I also got a pair of Pure Jill Getaway joggers that are soft cotton, light heather gray, and they are comfy though I don’t like the seam in the front (the line isn’t straight on me since I’m a bit…ok, a lot… on the curvy side). Both pair have wonderful pockets that will hold my phone or my keys. I don’t dry a lot of my clothes, particularly the JJill ones (I’ve gone on an epic spree over the past nine months). I’ve found they last longer, and my investment in them, particularly if I pay full freight, comes out better.

    • Jenny
      December 10, 2020 / 10:47 am

      I don’t have anything helpful to add to the jogger discussion, but I can *so* relate to this part of your comment: “I’ve just started wearing joggers, so that likely means they are on the downside, trend-wise.” That is totally me, too. Knowing that I am not the only person who is always late to the trend party made me smile 🙂

      • B.A.
        December 10, 2020 / 1:01 pm

        Haha, I also thought, “oh wow, that’s me” when I read that part! At least there’s the three of us 😉

        • Mary O'Driscoll
          December 10, 2020 / 11:22 pm
      • Mary O'Driscoll
        December 10, 2020 / 11:22 pm
    • Tala
      December 10, 2020 / 9:35 pm

      Joggers have hung around way longer than I thought they would. I got a pair 5 years ago and the trend is still going strong. I think the whole COVID/ stay at home thing really expanded their life. They’ve been around long enough I wonder if they will stick around and transition to just another pant option. More and more clothes seem to be doing that lately. My favorite “new” pant trend is bootcut leggings— you know yoga pants but with a fancy new name.

  14. Grace
    December 10, 2020 / 9:46 am

    As a tall, plus-sized person, joggers are so hard! They tend to be very short and often too tight in the butt. My faves are from Long Tall Sally, but they don’t have them anymore. Any recs for tall joggers that aren’t from Old Navy would be so appreciated!

    • B
      December 10, 2020 / 5:57 pm

      Roots has tall available online

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