Hot weather and a need for exercise come together for a fashion-savvy cycling season full of biker shorts. Whether you are taking those wheels out for a fun round the block or grabbing a heavy-duty bike to get your legs pumping up a mountain, you have to look your very best.
For the best in easy-breezy cycling shorts that look as stunning as they feel, we have put together a list of some of our favorites. After all, this trend is not restricted to those with bikes. Nor is it just restricted to the summer months. The runways proved that.
When the bike short ensemble is just right, you can look amazing even while sipping your coffee as you pour over a good book or enjoy a day out on a picnic. From the practical to the utterly eccentric, there is a pair of cycling shorts for everyone these days. Which of these would match your personality best?
Biker Shorts Trend Guide: Contents
- 15 Best Biker Shorts for Women to Buy in 2021
- What Are Bike Shorts and How Did They Come to Fashion?
- How to Wear Biker Shorts for Sleek Street Style Looks
15 Best Biker Shorts for Women to Buy in 2021
With the athleisure trend here to stay, you definitely want to add at least two pairs of comfy biker shorts to your closet, and our list below has the coolest offerings around to inspire you.
1. Simple Black Biker Shorts
High in waist, with a single seam down the middle, this tight pair from Alexander Wang can be rocked with a blazer and tight crop for a professional leisure appeal. The elastic waist gives a close but flexible fit, sculpting the body and looking appealing with pumps. Get this pair from Net-a-Porter!
2. Black Ribbed Bike Shorts
Gorgeous, form-hugging and in black, this 96% micromodal design is made in Peru. With an elastic waist and corrugated fabric, it is 41 cm long and perfectly comfortable, even when paired with 5-inch heels. Find this pair at Revolve!
3. Bright Yellow Bike Shorts
Who said you can’t look stunning while vying for comfort? These cycling shorts are bright in color, tight in fit, and made in Columbia. Wear it with a belted tweed blazer and strappy sandals for an especially cool spring to summer style. But first get them from Forward!
4. The ‘80s Cycling Shorts
Sexy shorts in black, this Beach Riot pair comes in very handy when doing your exercises paired with a comfortable crop top. It is on the smaller side, so remember to order up. The black pair will send you back to the ‘80s with its high waist and spinner class look! Made in the USA, it is available for purchase at Nordstrom.
5. Jewel Biker Shorts
High waists, long hems and a gorgeous neon green color make for a sexy combination when paired with high heels and a long-sleeved crop white shirt. Summer and fall do well with this Lovers + Friends design. Find it at Revolve!
6. Striped Coated Stretch Jersey Shorts
If you want to sex it up, you’ve picked the right design! High waist, tight fit and down to mid-thigh, these form-hugging Norma Kamali biker shorts come in a midnight blue with cream coating, the glossy sheen working perfectly well with a black or blue bralette and a ribbed leather jacket. Grab them at Net-a-Porter!
7. The Nude Bike Shorts
Made in Hungary, this Nanushka pair of stretch-fit cotton-blend cycling shorts is perfect for the summer months. Dress it up or down, the tan color goes well with chunky sandals and a tight top. Go with a turtleneck and slingback shoes for an especially trendy look. You can find them at Forward.
8. Neon Pink Cycling Shorts
Ever tried fuchsia shorts? Pick up this bright pair from English Factory in a myriad of sizes, a tight fit that goes amazingly well with a belted coat in black. Add strappy stiletto sandals and you are more than ready to hit the clubs. They are available at Shopbop.
9. Denim Biker Shorts
Are you utterly in love with the body-hugging jean look? Are you never out without skinnies or a pair of jeggings? If this explains your fashion style, you are going to fall in love with this pair of cycling shorts over and over again. Pair with a nice crop top, maybe a Converse on your feet and a little bag to bring in the Western feel and you are rocking a style that is both comfortable and elegant in design. High-waist, versatile and perfectly flattering, you simply can’t go wrong here. Pick this pair up at Revolve!
10. Block Stripe Cycling Shorts
Available from Farfetch, these black and neon yellow block stripe biker shorts feature an elastic waistband sitting high above the hips, and a lovely stretch fit for maximum comfort. Pull them on and head out to school in these. University and the walk/ cycle to and fro will be made a breeze!
11. Neon Leather Bike Shorts
If you want to show off the wealth, look incredible and really stand out from the crowd, here is an option that one won’t easily forget about. You shall be the talk of the club! Made in neon yellow 100% lamb leather, these are your newest second-skin pants to enjoy to the tee. The sculpting fit and high waistband ensure your comfort while you show off your style by pairing with darker colors such as black or grey. Grab them at Net-a-Porter!
12. Tie-Dye Cycling Shorts
This American-made gorgeous stretch-fit pair of biker shorts brings the beauty of tie-dye, florals and complementing colors to the forefront. Your legs will go on for miles in these, as hips are molded and a splash of color added to your ensemble. The jersey-knit fabric ensures both comfort and style. This Cotton Citizen pair is available at Forward.
13. Leopard Cycling Shorts
This will appeal to anyone who loved the ‘90s. Really. Or anyone who is a fan of big cats. Gorgeous white leopard print and biker shorts combine for an ensemble that will make you the talk of the gym and the sexiest girl on the block. Made in the US, it has a wide compression belt and made for your sporting needs. Slip it on with a matching crop top and head out for that jog! Get this pair from Shopbop!
14. Printed Jersey Shorts
While most biker shorts on this list reach mid-thigh to a few inches above the knees, this one sits nice and long, right at the knees themselves. Made of black stretch-cotton jersey, it is inspired by ‘80s athletic gear. It even includes the “Wangbody” logo and an upside-down version of the “Trefoil” signature. Cut for a skinny fit, the high rising pair is lightweight and stretches quite nicely for a truly comfortable fit. Find them at Net-a-Porter!
15. Swim Biker Shorts
We finish our list with a second Wang option, this time meant to swim with as well. It comes in a black and papaya stripe design. Made in Portugal, it is the perfect piece to end the summer in. Pair with heels or sandals or even some nice flip flops and enjoy the fun look. You can even dress it up for fall with a turtleneck sweater falling low on the buttocks. The sky is the limit. Play it as you wish! Get this pair from Forward!
What Are Bike Shorts and How Did They Come to Fashion?
Now that you have picked a pair or two or five or ten, let’s talk fashion. Where did these fun and thoroughly comfortable shorts appear from? Are they really worth the investment?
In our opinion, yes!
Cycling shorts or biker shorts are also known as chamois, knicks or spats, depending on who’s talking. Biker shorts are skin-tight bottoms meant to improve both comfort and efficiency while one cycles by reducing wind resistance, protecting the skin from the friction they would feel against the seat and the frame, supporting the genital region, drawing away the sweat to reduce chaffing and rashes, cooling down the rider, compressing legs to combat muscle fatigue, and reducing the weight of the rider’s clothing. All in all, there are very many advantages to biker shorts!
In the past, cycling shorts were made of knit black wool and chamois leather padding in the crotch area to prevent chaffing from the bicycle saddle. Modern options are often made of spandex and a synthetic chamois, also made in different shapes and designs to best suit the rider.
The hems are lined with elastic or silicone to keep them in place on the skin. They range in hem length, depending on the intended use. Biker shorts can be short, to be worn under dresses or during gymnastics, or longer, made for cycling.
Cycling Shorts in Modern Fashion
In the fashion industry, as a major spring trend, bike shorts are the modern leggings, made for the warmer days. The inspiration could have come from many a place, both spanning back to the ‘80s and ‘90s and looking at Yeezy’s trending designs.
Biker shorts might be sporty in essence, but they are surprisingly versatile and can help a woman dominate any setting, if dressed right. Neon hues, fun prints, and even lace-up fronts make for some interesting wardrobe options. Lace hems add a touch of femininity, while taller graphic waistbands draw attention to toned bodies.
Bike shorts can be cool or elegant, polished or ready to take the gym sporty. You decide. These days, celebrities are even rocking biker shorts on the red carpet. Check out Ariana Grande’s pair under her metallic, Tinkerbell-style dress during this year’s MTV VMAs.
How to Wear Biker Shorts for Sleek Street Style Looks
The easiest way to wear the biker shorts trend is with an oversized blazer and a pair of kitten heels. It’s mostly office-appropriate, while still keeping a feminine-meets-sporty aura.
You want to be the flirty date? Dress it up with a frilly puff-sleeved blouse. Taking the sexier route, keep top and bottom to body-hugging designs and you’ll leave your partner panting.
There are many styling tricks to use. Here are a few you can try out!
• We should state that you can easily pick up biker shorts in any color. For example, pairing turquoise with a black and white checkered blazer and matching accessories is a fun option. Do not be afraid to experiment with the colors, motifs, prints, and designs.
• Blazers and biker shorts are a common look on the runways these days, meaning you can wear them alone or open with a blouse underneath so long as the weather permits and you will look amazing.
• Another tip comes down to the footwear. While heels and biker shorts ensure sexy, sleek and elegant looks, you can easily go for the loafers and especially the runners. The sportier, laid-back aesthetic can be paired with a nice blouse for a half-and-half finish.
• When picking accessories for your bike shorts, we recommend tinted lenses on sunglasses, leather chokers, fanny packs, cross-body bags, and even leather belts.
• Definitely look for the high-waist biker shorts. They go well with anything, ensure your curves are tucked in tightly, and add to your comfort level. Summertime can be punctuated by crop tops, while the winter season can see them paired with cropped hoodies or fitted blazers.
• Try them on and test them out before wearing them to your events, ensuring there won’t be any embarrassing ride-ups. You will most definitely want to avoid flimsy or sheer fabrics in this case, as they are bound to cause problems.
• Be bold with your biker shorts. Do try out the camo or the fun, bright prints.
• Accessories should be used to create the glam and drama you desire.
• You can make your cycling short trend season-appropriate, depending on the tops, accessories and shoes you throw into the ensemble. If you need inspiration, Instagram and Pinterest are teeming with options, particularly when it comes to celebrity choices.
Pair your black biker shorts with a simple white shirt, do your hair and makeup, add some jewelry, and you are rocking the look! You can even go with a nice blazer over the shirt you have tied in front for an even sexier professional look. Don’t forget to add in your designer work bag to spice up the look!
You want to impress when out on the town, enjoying a concert or a summer ice cream cone? Off-the-shoulder frilly print blouses go very well with body-hugging cycling shorts! No need for heels either. Enjoy the comfort of flats.
If you like your jean jackets, wear a crop set with your biker shorts and throw on a faded black jean or a pretty blue version. Imagine how amazing they will look on a gorgeous leopard print.
Okay, this doesn’t always work the best, but you can try! Pair your biker shorts with a freshly ironed shirt for a dress-up/ dress-down look that will wow bystanders. Go for mid-thigh at a minimum, however. You want to keep it professional.
You can easily pair this with loafers as well, for a pretty sleek ensemble. Shirts and shorts are a common fashion Instagrammer look these days, meaning you can get away with it, no matter how you play it up.
Depending on where you work, we most certainly recommend wearing biker shorts with a fitted blazer, belted at the waist. Heels and a little bag complete the look that will earn you both the respect and admiration of your peers.
Beach-Ready Cycling Shorts
Yep, comfort at the beach is a big yes! Pull on a crop top with your black bike shorts, probably even one with fun seams and mesh additions. Play around with the look and add some flip-flops for added pizzazz.
Date Night If you plan on going out, here’s an option! Darker colors, longer hems and a billowy tie-front shirt in mellow but fun prints make for a great combination. You will be able to enjoy a nice dinner as well as a walk around town in this. High platform heels work perfectly in this particular look.
Have you thought about a tight-fitting halter with your biker shorts? No? This is a great look, especially if you can match the colors to give it a seamless design. It’s like wearing a swimsuit, except the sexier version.
You will dance the night away without worrying about your skirt riding up or your legs chaffing from the friction. What more could you want?
Photos via Instagram