Chinos are one of the most versatile pieces of clothing that a man can own. From street casual to business casual to semi-formal, guys can wear chino pants across different dress codes for a stylish outfit. These pants can be sleek and trendy or relaxed and comfortable depending on your style and needs. The key to adjusting how your chinos come across is by experimenting with the pieces that you wear with them. Changing the shoes you pair with your chinos can drastically transform the tone of the entire outfit. To help you find the right look, we’ve compiled the best shoes to wear with chinos. Whether you want to try sneakers, boots, loafers or dress shoes, we’ll show you what shoes go with chino pants.
How To Wear Chinos
Before you start experimenting with different styles of pants, you should know how to wear chinos. You need to be able to pick the chinos that are right for your body type and aesthetic. As with any other piece of men’s clothing, the fit is the most important part of choosing the right chino trousers.
Slim fit, tapered, or athletic styles will offer a clean-cut look while still complementing your silhouette, and these cuts offer you the most versatility. Skinny or baggy cuts are more limited to informal styles, so approach these fits with that in mind.
Chino pants should be the proper length as well. Men should avoid pants that are too long and bunch around the ankles, and guys want to be sure they are not too short, either. Generally, chinos that hit with a single break or are cropped to the ankle are trendy and fashionable.
When To Wear Chinos
While this pant style can be dressed up or down, chinos are less formal than traditional dress pants or slacks. However, these trousers are more formal than denim, and can be worn in a number of settings. Only in the most formal settings should chinos be avoided. Otherwise, chino pants are always a nice outfit for men who want to combine style and comfort.
For casual occasions, dress chinos like you would jeans with sneakers and a t-shirt. Some guys like to roll up their pant legs for a cuffed look that’s relaxed and comfortable with classic white shoes. To get a smart-casual look for the office, wear an Oxford cloth button-down with brown or black leather sneakers, boots, loafers, or dress shoes. Men who want to achieve a casual business professional style will want to stick with khaki, black and navy colors.
For more formal occasions like baptisms, graduations or bachelor parties, style cuffed chinos with a blazer, button-up shirt and dark brown or black dress shoes. Cuffed pants often denote a nicer cut and formal styling so these types of chinos are ideal for professional and semi-formal events.
Smart Casual Chinos Outfits
Chinos are practically made for smart-casual style. Smart casual events call for a fine balance of looking sharp without overdressing. Because chino pants are so versatile, they can be more forgiving when guys are trying not to overdress or under-dress for an occasion.
When choosing what shoes to wear with chinos for smart-casual events, it is important to pick a shoe that has a clean but relaxed look. For example, cap-toed oxfords might be too formal, and chunky sneakers will be too casual. Look for staples like chukkas, suede or leather loafers, or low-cut sneakers. Try a simple smart casual outfit with a pair of clean pastel sneakers, chinos, and a patterned button-down.
Semi-Formal Chinos Outfits
Chino trousers are also an excellent choice for semi-formal events. Semi-formal events often have men reaching for their trusty suit. However, these events are a perfect time to substitute in a blazer and chinos for a custom look.
Dress your chino trousers up with a spread-collar shirt, blazer, and dress shoes. Stick to tried and true classics like oxfords or brogues. Loafers can also be worn on semi-formal occasions but be careful to pick styles that match the elevated look of the rest of your pieces. The most versatile dress shoes often come in brown patent leather, though you can try other colors to modify your look.
Cocktail Attire Outfits
Chinos can also be incorporated into cocktail attire. Cocktail dress codes tend to allow a little more personal flavor than semi-formal or formal events. Dress up your chinos with a button-down shirt and blazer but allow yourself to change up your outfit for your next cocktail event. Try a textured blazer and a dress shirt with a subtle pattern.
For footwear to wear with your chinos, Derby shoes are a popular dress shoe; they are more relaxed than Oxfords but are still refined and classy. Try brogued Derbies in natural tan leather, penny loafers, or even dress boots for fall events.
Best Shoes To Wear with Chinos
Choosing the right shoes to wear with chinos depends on the dress code and your outfit, including the style, texture and color of your pants, shirt, jacket, and footwear. While almost any pair of shoes can look stylish with chinos, certain styles and outfit ideas are naturally more fashionable and trendy than others. From casual to dressy, these are the best shoes that go with chino pants.
Chinos are a natural complement to a wide range of boot styles. The style of boot you choose should depend on what type of event you plan on attending. Chelsea boots are a trendy choice for smart casual or some semi-formal events and can be found in leather and suede styles. Chukkas or desert boots are a great shoe to wear with chino pants for smart-casual events. Dress boots are a less common but very stylish option for semi-formal or cocktail events. Look for leather dress boots with a slim profile.
Chinos and loafers are a great option for casual to semi-formal looks. They are both capable of being dressed up or down and so pair well together. Use your shirt, blazer, and accessories to decide which dress code you are aiming for. Suede loafers are popular shoes and often used for smart-casual looks, although they can be dressed up further if needed. Leather loafers are incredibly diverse. Penny loafers complement outfits suited for smart casual or cocktail dress codes, while more traditional tasseled loafers are decidedly more formal.
Sneakers can be used in more formal settings today than in the past, but it would be wise to keep them confined to casual and smart casual outfits. Start with a clean white pair of sneakers that pair with virtually everything and then branch out. Today, sneakers or trainers can be found in a variety of fashionable colors, including black, navy, beige, maroon, dark green, yellow, and pastel shades. Adding different colored shoes into your wardrobe can add variety and intrigue to your footwear. Chinos with sneakers is a combination that can be worn casually with a t-shirt and then transitioned into a weekend look by swapping your top for an Oxford and leather jacket.
Similar to loafers, boat shoes are a distinct style of shoe that lends itself to a preppy aesthetic. Boat shoes with chinos are a look that is at home on a yacht or golf course but can be worn in other semi-formal or smart casual settings. Try preppy pieces like faded red chinos with a linen blazer.
Dress shoes are a great way to add a formal touch to chinos. Dress shoes include Derbies, Oxfords, brogues, bluchers, chukkas, and leather boots. From black dress shoes to brown leather boots, the style of shoe that you choose is entirely up to your personal preference. Oxfords provide an understated formal look essential for more stringent dress codes, while brogues and Derbies can be dressed down.
As with your chinos, the color of your dress shoes is important to consider. Black leather is the most formal, but it is less versatile than classic brown shades. Suede Derbies can be found in colors that can accentuate a semi-formal or smart casual outfit. Try Derbies in cream or navy suede for a personal touch.
Shoes That Go With Chinos
- Which shoes you wear with your chinos will depend on whether you want to look casual, smart casual or semi-formal.
- Try variations of shoes in different colors and materials to give your style more variety.
- Pair sneakers or trainers with chinos for a cool casual or smart casual style.
- Chinos and loafers offer a sharp yet versatile look you can wear anywhere.
- Dress up chinos with dark brown or black dress shoes for a sleek outfit.
- Chinos with boots are fresh and masculine for a fashionable look you can wear in the summer and winter.
- Leather and suede footwear can add a unique texture and classy finish to your attire.