When it’s hot — like fry-an-egg-on-the-sidewalk-and-don’t-even-bother-wearing-deodorant-because-you’re-screwed-anyway hot — jean shorts sound like the absolute worst idea. But here’s a fun reminder that’s easy to forget: Jean shorts, though ubiquitous, are not the only shorts that exist. There are plenty. Now, if we’re talking steamy nether regions, it’s pajama shorts that deserve all the hot weather, leg-baring credit. They’re like button-down shirts for your fanny: sharp, airy and perfect with everything.

Elizabeth Tamkin styled the below to show that proof is in the PJ pudding.

Grandpa’s “House Pants”

These shorts (that Leandra once wore to the office) work because they trick everyone’s eyes into thinking you’re wearing a skirt, when really, your grandpa likely wears these to brush his teeth at night. Worn with an oversize linen shirt, slippers and a crochet robe, you’re golden in public, but you’re also prepared should you find yourself overcome by the urge to crawl back in bed.

When Someone Asks You, “Boxers or Briefs?”

Boxers. Hello, there’s a built-in crotch-breeze window. Add a long blouse over them to avoid a show, though. A teeny top-handle handbag big enough for necessities makes it clear your leaving of the house was intentional. Fancy camper sandals make you a woman of mystery.

None-of-Your-Business Casual

Here’s how this outfit works: Roll off your couch-as-chaise lounge in the silky shorts-and-tank combo you were wearing to be At Home Fancy. No one needs to know you slept in it for three days straight. Grab a blazer but don’t don it until you reach an over-air-conditioned destination. Arrive, dive (in a sink of water) and then throw the blazer on. Belt it at your waist. Chill.

Then let the countdown begin until you can run home, half-change and more or less wear the same outfit to bed.

Poll: Would you wear these? Y/N?

Styled by Elizabeth Tamkin. Modeled by Luiza Farber of MSA Models; follow Luiza @xoxoluiza and MSA @msamodels. Photos by Edith Young.

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  • Naomi du Plessis

    OH MY GOD I AM SO INTO THIS. Summer will never be the same again.

  • YES YES YES!!!

  • Harling Ross

    Outfit #1 for me please!!

  • When it’s hot as hell outside tight clothes never made sense to me. So clearly I’m all about this. I have a pair of elastic-waist silk Jonathan Simkhai shorts with the little curved sides (I think they’re called dolphin shorts), and they’re so easy-breezy for summer.

    I clicked on the Chanel link for the shoes in look 2, but they seem to be different shoes. Need to know where those blue strappy sandals are from, please.

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      They’re Chanel! The pair we linked to is a newer style.

  • Can we talk about how the “Grandpa” shorts are actually called “Walk of Shame Shorts”? Oh wait, the BRAND is called Walk of Shame. I love it.

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      YES the brand’s from Moscow. The Grandpa I’m envisioning is from Boston.

  • ChiefCC

    Love this!!!! Pajama shorts rule!!!!

  • Shelley

    Uniqlo sells a men’s pair called Easy Shorts, which makes me question I would I ever wear shorts that aren’t easy??

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      Answer: NO

  • Yes.

  • Michelle Rigas

    All of the shoes the models are wearing are awkwardly too big for them. Forget about pajama shorts, I think the shoot is secretly trying to get too-big shoes on the radar. Or tiny feet. The bigger the shoe the tinier the foot? I’m looking out for this, man repeller, from now on, giant shoe tiny foot trend.

    • Amelia Diamond

      you know what they say about big shoes: wiggle room

  • ChiefCC

    Wait … did this change after it was first posted?

    • Amelia Diamond

      Byline swap since I wrote and Eliz styled, amended copy here: “Elizabeth Tamkin styled the below to show that proof is in the PJ pudding.”

  • Rachel D.

    MR you’re killin it today! This post is perf. Am so anti denim jeans (on me, not other people) & this nails it.

  • Kay Nguyen

    I need that cold shoulder blouse in my life! Too pretty <3


  • Emily

    Ok, yes, but I NEED to know what lipstick the model is wearing ?!?!

    • Coconut

      Me too!! So pretty!!!

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      It was a mix of 3 I’ll find out for you 🙂

  • me

    My oh-so-hot nether region just breathed a sigh of cool relief ….

    I’m going to don my boxers out in the Real World vice wear them to bed !

  • Kiks

    On a whim, I ordered these shorts in both colours. They’ve been at the core of every great summer outfit. Especially wonderful was the red pair with a baggy neon pink silk blouse. I felt like a really fancy yet lazy valentine. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f3a21afde01075a424383d07f77757151d7358ca78f89bd46e414249e5ba0de9.jpg


    • Rachel D.

      I’ve been debating these!! How do they fit? Wash?

      • Kiks

        They fit really nicely. I’m 6’1 and a size 8-10 with a decent sized butt and thighs…I have a lot of problems finding cute shorts that aren’t too revealing. These are dreamy. The L fit me perfectly, not too tight or short but not baggy. They sit at my natural waist, so if you’re shorter they might almost be high-rise. They are honestly my fave summer shorts I’ve owned in years.

        I have not washed them, I think they say dry clean only but I could be wrong. That being said I am a drycleaning delinquent so I’ve just been wearing them (at least once a week for the past month) and they still look good! (I am a dirtbag.)

        • Rachel D.

          Ahhh these sound perfect!!! I really struggle with finding the right shorts just bc I have a really long torso (so need a long/high rise) and also have ~athletic~ thighs so need some room to move. I might give these a go. Hahaha, I’m also a dirtbag and hate dry cleaning so much.

          • Kiks

            It sounds like they will be great for you!!! Fingers crossed.

    • Elizabeth Tamkin

      I love these!!!

  • Caroline

    I also appreciate the butt-covering aspect of these outfits because my pj shorts are see-through and nude underwear is a bummer

  • Jennifer

    As a woman with thick thighs, hips and a butt, those shorts aren’t flattering on me (okay, my fiance would love them on me, but only around the house). Style them on a girl with some curves and show me the light!!!

    • Isadora de Andrade

      I hear you! But personal experience: don’t be afraid to go WAY oversized!

      • Jennifer

        Hmm…very good point. I’ll have to track a pair down this weekend, and give it a try!

  • Katy

    I’d wear #1 and #3. Love this

  • ashley

    this girl is so gorgeous this post isn’t even really fair

  • Isadora de Andrade

    I just want to say that I consistently (tried to) rock this look for yeaaaars now and I finally have this to present as evidence that I was indeed onto something! I was made fun off, doubted, but never defeated! Thank you Amelia!

  • VarunaJithesh
  • elpug

    HUGE proponent of non-denim shorts. I love having more options than just denim and love this older pair of aerie shorts that I wear all summer long for at least the past three summers.

    aaaaand as I see if they still have something similar on the website for pics, they are having a great sale on leggings for $30 and lounge shorts for $15 FYI!



  • I love denim cutoffs but I think they must be the most uncomfortable piece of clothing known to women… Pajama shorts all the way!

  • Jamie

    Not exactly pajama shorts, but I’ve been living in Madewell’s pull on shorts all summer. So comfy, perfect length, and FUNCTIONAL POCKETS. Love them so much I stocked up on extra pairs.