Just a few years ago, the idea of trying to find the best sweatpants for men would’ve sounded ludicrous. Sweatpants were the thing you wore exclusively in your most lethargic moments—sniffly on the couch, hungover in a college lecture, picking your kids up from soccer practice without ever getting out of the car—never something for true public consumption. So why bother? Just keep right on wearing the same ratty pair with the bright orange stain from the Great Kraft Mac & Cheese Disaster of 2017.

Then the athleisure movement happened, and everything changed. We’re thankfully a few years past the peak of everyone rolling around town in high-concept yoga pants and $500 zip hoodies, but the idea of owning truly great sweatpants has stuck around for good. With the right pair—i.e. sweatpants that are hyper soft but still have some structure, that are tailored in a way that accentuates your legs instead of drowning them, with a decent number of pockets and a waistband that won’t stretch out and get all flabby—you’ll be able to roll around all weekend, from brunch to a bike ride to binging Big Mouth, without ever changing your bottoms. Doesn’t that sound nice? If you’re looking to comfy up right, we did the hard work of lazing about in fleece and definitively determined the 29 best pairs of sweatpants for men—and everyone—in 2021.

The Best Elevated Sweatpants

John Elliott “Sochi” sweatpants

When they launched in 2013, John Elliott’s Escobar pants quickly came to define the athleisure movement, and they paved the way for men getting away with wearing what was once workout gear in public without looking lazy. Seven years later, his Sochi model has helped to give that movement a facelift. Where the Escobar was aggressively tapered and overly engineered, the Sochi is cut roomy and relaxed, with elastic cinch cords at the cuffs that allow you to adjust the fit to your liking. Crafted from a dense, proprietary French terry fleece, they’ll actually get comfier the more you wear them—which is saying something, because they start out pretty darn cozy as it is.

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Fear of God x Ermenegildo Zegna cotton blend tracksuit pants

Even as Jerry Lorenzo leans further into fine tailoring, his elite slouchy sweats remain a fixture in the Fear of God universe.

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Thom Browne tapered striped loopback cotton-jersey sweatpants

Yes, Thom Browne—the guy who makes our favorite shrunken suit and who literally goes running in a polo shirt—makes some of the best sweatpants money can buy. They’re pricey, but like Browne’s suits, oxford cloth shirts, and wingtips, you can feel that these made-in-Japan sweats are built to last.

The Best Athletic Sweatpants

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Nike Sportswear Tech Fleece joggers

As far as Nike innovations go, Tech Fleece may be one of Nike’s all-time greatest. The fabric brings that classic spongy and elastic feel with a space-age structured look that makes it the perfect fabric for sweatpants. They’ve got a trimmer fit and reinforced knees, but because they’re Nike, you can sweat your ass off in them without feeling guilty.

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Outdoor Voices All Day sweatpant

Comfy enough to sleep in, stretchy enough to keep on for your early-morning jog.

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Vuori Ponto performance pant

These newborn-kitten-soft bottoms are engineered to handle just about anything you throw their way, from weightlifting to HIIT.

The Best Cozy Sweatpants

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Richer Poorer recycled fleece sweatpants

Richer Poorer’s signature sweats seem almost too good to be true: they’re outrageously soft, tailored enough for a distanced hang, and made entirely from recycled plastic bottles. Even more suspicious? They normally cost $80, but right now you can nab a pair for just $50—along with a crateful of other GQ-approved goods—as part of our latest Best Stuff Box. We know: we can’t believe it either. But we promise you this deal is for real.

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Entireworld brushed sweatpants

Brushed on the inside for an extra fluffy finish.

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The Toronto label behind our go-to swim trunks now also produce some seriously soft, Canadian-made sweats—with matching beanies to boot.

The Best Standard-Setting Sweatpants

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Todd Snyder + Champion midweight slim jogger sweatpants

Todd Snyder’s longstanding collaboration with Champion is responsible for our favorite crewneck sweatshirt, so it would stand to reason that they also make a top-notch sweatpant. For once, an assumption won’t make an ass out of you and me—but it will make your ass look mighty damn fine. (Sorry.) Because of course the Todd Snyder + Champion line’s sweatpants are great, and for many of the same reasons as their upper body counterpart: the fit is tailored and on point, the details are handsome and vintage-inspired, the french terry fabric has just the right mix of structure and softness. If you’re looking for a simple, classic sweatpant executed flawlessly, these are the way to go.

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Noah Winged Foot sweatpant

Noah’s thoughtfully-designed sweats—built from heavyweight fleece with a handy zip pocket—get a striking two-tone makeover.

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Everlane’s newest sweatpants are ethically made from crisp organic french terry.

The Best Budget Sweatpants

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Russell Athletic Cotton Rich 2.0 premium fleece sweatpants

At this stage, you might be thinking: *OK, GQ, these fancy-pants sweats are all fine and dandy. But what about sweatpants for sweatpants sake? The kind you spend next to nothing on, wear into the ground, and don’t mind occasionally wiping the Cheeto dust on your fingers on?* These are those sweats. Russell has been in the athleticwear game since the early 1900s, and their standard-fit, open-bottom sweatpants continue to deliver some of the absolute best value in the business. You won’t find a better basic sweatpant for under $30.

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Uniqlo U straight-leg sweatpants

Uniqlo U never misses, and these slightly baggy beauts are no exception.

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Champion LIFE Reverse Weave pants

Even without Todd Snyder’s input, Champion makes a damn-near definitive pair of sweatpants.

The Best Tough Sweatpants

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Reigning Champ midweight terry cuffed sweatpant

The details help to separate Reigning Champ’s sweats from the pack: reinforced seams, a subtle taper, and a wide waistband with a thick rope drawstring that sits on your hips instead of below them. But it’s the Canadian-made fleece itself—thick and tough on the outside, brushed and soft on the inside, with plenty of gorgeous texture—that really earns them a spot on this list.

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Carhartt WIP American Script jogging pant

As beefy and tough as you’d expect from the first name in workwear.

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Goodwear fleece sweatpants with side pockets

If you’re looking for something made a little closer to home, these sweats from Goodwear offer hefty quality that’s cut and sewn stateside.

11 More Sweatpants We Love

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Polo Ralph Lauren fleece sweatpant

A classic is a classic is a classic.

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Fear of God Essentials fleece sweatpants

The signature sweats from Jerry Lorenzo’s more affordable Essentials label tend to sell out quick—so don’t sleep on these.

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Buck Mason brushed loopback trouser

Fits and feels like a well-worn pair of chinos.

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The Real McCoy’s loop wheeled sweatpants

True-blue denimhead? These Japanese-made military reproduction joints are the sweats for you.

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Uniqlo pile-lined sweatpants

Lined with fuzzy fleece to keep your legs nice and comfortable, even on the worst of winter days.

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Lands’ End Serious Sweats sweatpants

This is all about that perfect shade of burgundy.

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Celine Homme + Gregory Edwards Stranded in the Jungle printed loopback cotton-jersey sweatpants

Keeping comfy and dressing fierce don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

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The Elder Statesman tie-dyed organic cotton-fleece sweatpants

The tie-dye wave is still rolling strong.

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Lady White Co. sport trouser

Cut boxy and a little cropped like your best pair of Dickies.

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Standard Issue Tees sweatpants

Think pink.

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