The Cargo Trend: What to Wear with Cargo Pants

Chic, chill and effortlessly cool, cargo pants are a must in any wardrobe. They’re a staple in colder weather and there are so many ways to style them, from the Y2K look we all know and love to a more elevated, dressed-up take. Plus, saying what we’re all thinking, they’re also a great way to look put together whilst staying comfy!    

In this article, we share some inspo on what to wear with cargo pants, from rave outfits to casual styles that will still have heads turning your way. Stay tuned, too, for an exploration of the history of cargo pants (and a look at why they will be BAE forever.) 

Who IS she?

Before the outfit ideas, a moment for some historical context! Where did cargos come from? And how have they changed over the years?

Though originally designed for use in the military with a loose cut that makes them easy to move in, cargo pants became a staple stylish piece in the early 2000s.  Celebs like JLo and Christina Aguilera were rarely seen without them and when Dior brought out their own, they became high fashion too.

These days, cargo pants aren’t limited to the cut they once became famous for. Tailored cargos and cargo joggers, for example, provide an extra cinched fit compared to the classic design. As we explore next, these are a great way to create a more polished and modern look if you’re not going for the Y2K vibe. 

One thing’s for sure, cargo pants are here to stay. They have an always-contemporary feel because of their versatility and ability to match different styles. 

How to style cargo pants

Got a date? A business meeting? A hot girl walk? Cargo pants are good for all of the above. Here are four ways to dress them up or down. 

Every day cool girl cargo

When you want to step out to run errands or go for a quick coffee date, cargos are the perfect way to be stylish but still comfortable.  Pair a baggy style with an equally baggy sweatshirt and chunky trainers for a look that screams too cool to care.

If you want to add some spice to the outfit, go for a fun print or wash. The High Waist Wide Leg Cargo Joggers In Acid Wash, for example, look great with a hoodie with a vibrant print or wash. 

blonde lady wearing blue patterned cargos, black crop top and sunglasses

High Waist Multi Pocket Detail Oversized Cargo Trousers in Blue Print

A full Y2K cargo look 

If that nostalgic Y2K look is just your thing, you’ll need at least five pairs of cargo pants in your wardrobe. 

To pull the look off seamlessly, pick out a pair of wide-leg cargos and find a brightly coloured graphic t-shirt (plus points if it’s cropped!) Throw on a denim jacket and grab some oversized hoop earrings and you’ll be good to go.  

Short Sleeve Ruched Side Detail Graphic Print Crop T-Shirt in White

How to style cargos for a business casual setting

Think cargos are a no-no for the office?  We’re about to prove you wrong….Find yourself a banging hot pair like our High Waist Pocket Detail Straight Leg Cargo Trousers and style them with a plain fitted top like the Long Sleeve Crew Neck Top In Black. The structured fit creates a polished look and a sense of professionalism. 


Then add a pair of kitten heels and a shoulder bag to tie the look together – we’d recommend the Morgana Shaped Shoulder Bag In Dark Nude Patent because it’s simple, gorge, and super classy!


If it’s cold on your walk to work, throw on a trench coat to add an air of true glam. Alternatively, complete the look with a blazer. This will provide a beautiful contrast with the casual edge of the cargos. 

lady wearing black two piece set with stone longline trench coat

Oversized Button Front Tie Waist Longline Trench Coat in Stone

From house party to rave

Ready to radiate bad gal energy on a night out? Cargo pants are your best friend because with the right top and shoes, you’ll look ice cool at pre-drinks, but hot in the club. 


Show a little skin with a bodysuit or crop top that has panels or cutouts or choose a corset to accentuate your waist. These types of tops pair perfectly with cargos because they add a touch of femininity to the utilitarian, street vibe. 


Opt for a pair of square toe heels to complement the badass look cargo pants give or, if you’re going to be dancing all night, go for trainers or boots. While chunky boots can sometimes look too heavy with cargo pants, a pair of slim Chelsea boots that hit below your ankle will draw the eye down and make your legs look longer. 


With a look that’s full of drama like this one, it never hurts to layer up with jewellery. Try a thick necklace like the Multi-Layer Crucifix Necklace In Black or the Bubble Heart Detail Pendant Necklace

blonde lady wearing white baby tee with high waist grey trousers

High Waist Pocket Detail Toggle Straight Leg Cargo Trousers In Grey


Slay your cargo look

Next time you’re flicking through Insta wondering what to wear with cargo pants, come back to our blog. We stay on top of the latest trends so that you can keep serving up the best looks. Whether you’re heading out to paint the town red or just chilling at your local brunch hotspot, we’ve got women’s clothing and accessories that are sure to turn heads.

Lucy Smith
Lucy Smith

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