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Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report

It’s kind of always Summer in Los Angeles but, since it’s actually Summer, men are put in a little bit of a predicament that is extremely silly: can I wear shorts out tonight? While I am a staunch shorts wearer, am never seen in anything else *but* shorts, and have written about this many times, I am permanently aware of the perceptions surrounding this article of clothing. I recently was almost turned away from my favorite bar (Bar Stella, ahem.) for wearing shorts, something that was shocking because–not to throw shade–but the shorts I was wearing were $150 APC shorts I saved up all Summer of 2010 to buy: those are not “just shorts.” They are fancy shorts and I did not look like some casual schmuck.

Because this issue is a matter of taste and styling, we made a little report that we’d like for you all to start sending around to establishments that have beef with bros wearing shorts out. Use this as a guide for yourself or for your bouncers to understand what is acceptable and what is not acceptable to wear out. Obviously certain places have certain aesthetics, we get that–but “shorts” do not automatically mean that someone is dressing overly casual or overly sloppy. After all, we are in Southern California, the casual capital of the world where it is always seventy degrees.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 1

“Hey, excuse me: how do I look? Do you think this is a good look to wear out? Am I too casual right now or not?”

Well, sir, your outfit is an excellent starting off point: you are just right. Your shorts are contemporary and at the perfect length–above the knee to mid-thigh–and are cuffed and smartly paired with a sweater and collar shirt. You aren’t wearing sandals nor are you wearing a tanktop which–while good–are not appropriate for going out. You have straddled the line of sophisticated casual, which is always right in our book.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

You have about a seventy percent of getting in. Keep a spare pair of pants in the car. That’s a good rule of thumb for any male shorts enthusiast.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 2

“What about me? How do I look? Is my style a good situation?”

While this may fly on the beach, it won’t at a nice place. These are below the knee cutoffs that are way too baggy and paired with a t-shirt, hat, and sneakers: you are a quadruple threat of casual beach bro. While what you purchased may be expensive or flattering, they are a bit too dressed down and not styled appropriately to go out.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

No. Absolutely not. Change your clothes.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 3

“How about me? Do I look okay?”

You look perfect, man: this is a very European Summer prep look that is always non-casual. If you had different shoes on and/or no belt, you could be at risk. You may want to bring a jacket to help dress your look up

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

Most likely, yes.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report  4

“Hey. Do I look okay?”

Sorry, Kevin: you look like a mess. Your shorts are having an identity crisis because they think they are pants and you are wearing a tent on your top half. Stylish in some circles, yes, but this is not a “nice outfit.” See those girls to your right? They are laughing at you because you look sloppy.

“Would I–”

No. Just stay home.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 5

“I’m worried about my outfit. Is it too much?”

This is a matter of styling and taste. While we give the OK on this, you have a few conflicting elements. Hat? A negative. Collared shirt? A plus. Shorts? A negative. Boots with high socks? An OK. The combination of these all together may be a bit much for a bouncer and–speaking from experience–you are walking a thin line of style. We like your look, yes, but others may not “get” it.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

You should bring a pair of pants just to be safe. Sorry about that. Maybe take off the hat and bring a pair of loafers?

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 6

“Can I have your attention: how do I look?”

Officer, please don’t find this disrespectful, but you will not get in anywhere. You are wearing way too short of shorts and, while I approve of them personally, bar/dressy shorts should never go any less than three quarter thigh length–and even that’s pushing it. Mid-thigh is key. You are also clearly wearing a uniform, which reads, “I just got off my shift.”

“Would I not be allowed into a bar?”

Probably not but–duh–use your cop authority to get in.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 7

“How do I look?”

This is a great dressed-up-but-not look. A sweater is a good cover for being “dressy” and a collared shirt always solidifies that dress code ambiguity. Your shorts–while casual–are tailored and sophisticated. The matching plimsolls are a nice touch, too.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

I would think so.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 8

“Hey. What do you think of me?”

I don’t know, man. You look cool and artsy and stuff but a statement t-shirt is basically an ask not to get in when worn with shorts. If you had a sweater to hide it, you could be good. Many would think you look fine but I wouldn’t bet on getting in anywhere.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

Nope. Sorry man.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 9

“Sorry to bother you but what about me?

This is the absolutely perfect “nice shorts” look. You have a nice, fitted jacket, a buttoned up shirt, and your shorts are a mature, stylish fit. Suede shoes are an added bonus and you will look better than most men who are in the bar and wearing pants. Wear this every day.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

Yes. If you are not allowed in, fuck that place. You are better than that place.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 9

“Hey, I changed my clothes: how’s this?”

No. This is even worse. Athletic clothes should only be worn while working out or while hiking or at home: you should be embarrassed. I’m embarrassed for you, man. It’s outfits like this that make people think all shorts are sloppy.

“Would…well–umm–you’re right.”


Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 10

“I know you can’t see the top of my head–but do I look good?”

Don’t worry about the head: don’t need to see it, man. You look great, actually: the shorts are a perfect above-the-knee fit and the sweater is a perfect casual-fancy matching. The sneakers are also fancy sneakers so you should be good there, too. When in doubt, go J.Crew–and you did that.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

I would say most likely but, hey, not all bouncers have taste.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 11

“Stop right there: tell me how I look.”

Like the aforementioned officer, you don’t look too good man. First off, way too tight in the shorts department which is a sure no unless you are going to a gay or fetish bar. Also, what kind of officer are you?

“That’s irrelevant.”

Oh. Okay.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 12

“Hey–sent you two photos of my look: any good?”

This is a great casual look! It also shows off cut-offs done right. This said, you still may be a little too casual. You are styled perfectly and everything fits quite nicely–but jeans that are cutoffs are tough. We’d say you may be at risk, man. Sorry.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

Maybe. You should bring some pants, just to be safe.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 14

“Our car just broke and we’re on our way out. We looking good?”

You guys. Shorts too long, tank tops, boxers hanging out: no. This is a no-no. You’ll also be covered in motor muck so you should just go home.

“But would I be allowed into a bar?”

Absolutely not. Too casual.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 15

“I have a question for you: do you–”

Going to stop you right there, sir: you look great. You have a casual and dressed up collared shirt that just needs to be buttoned up more to look fancy. Tucking it in? Genius and throws off an aggressively colored short. The white loafers are another nice touch, too. This is a great look!

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

We would say yes. If you aren’t allowed in, just know you are better than them.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 16

“Well, helllllllooooooo.”

Hell no. Go home. You are drunk.

“But whhhhhhyyyyy????”

Actually, try The Eagle.

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 17


~*~HeLLo ThErE~*~ You have a brilliant balance of sporty and casual and dressy that shouldn’t go unnoticed. The tie literally ties this look together and the vest and jacket echo it. Clean, tight sneakers and tailored, tech-y jean shorts also clearly show off that you care about this outfit and that you worked on it. That’s a big key to this: if you look like you care about how look, people will care about how you look. Remember that, men and bouncers.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

We hope so!

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 18

“Oy. Wearing pants: that’s an instant in, right?”

No, Russell: too many holes on the bottom and top and the addition of the hat mean you will likely not be let in since it appears that you do not care.

Oh: you’ll probably get into a bar or anywhere because you are a celebrity. That said, this does not mean that you “look good.”

“Cool. Cheers.”

Good Shorts, Bad Shorts, No Shorts Report 19

“True or false: cargo pants are a bad look and won’t get you into a bar?”

False–mostly. You are dressed like a Ralph Lauren model and you will not have any trouble getting into anywhere. The basic rule of thumb for men going out is–

1. Look clean.
2. Look tailored.
3. Look casually dressy.
4. Do not look like you are on vacation.

“Would I be allowed into a bar?”

Yes. And, if you want to wear shorts, you can find an idea of how to wear them out above.

Photos via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, via, and via.

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