Already have an account?
Get back to the
Fashion

The 16 Best Shorts for Women Over 50: Bermudas, Denim and More

Discover the most flattering shorts styles and the things to look for in a pair

Sun’s out, legs out! Summer is in full swing, meaning it’s time to bring out our sandals, swimsuits and shorts! While we may love the idea of throwing on a pair of shorts that are both comfortable and stylish, actually finding the perfect pair can be an exhausting process; but it doesn’t have to be! From linen shorts to classic denim to dressy trouser shorts, we rounded up the best shorts for women over 50 that will have you comfy all day while looking chic and fabulous.

What to look for in shorts for women over 50

Finding the right pair of shorts as a woman over 50 that checks all your boxes is no easy task. But by keeping the below key things in mind, it will be make it that much easier to have an idea of what to look for.

mature woman wearing shorts on the beach
freemixer/Getty

1. Length

The length of your shorts ultimately comes down to personal preference, but overall, it’s best to avoid anything too short or too long. Shorts that are too short can skew immature, and shorts that are too long can look matronly — you want a pair that lies in the middle. As a general rule of thumb, we like shorts that have anywhere from a 5- to 7-inch inseam. This length looks age-appropriate and flatters everyone. We also like a slightly longer Bermuda short since they offer a bit more coverage, and are also very on-trend currently; for Bermudas, we like an 8- to 11-inch inseam (depending on the style and fit).

2. Body type

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the one pair of shorts that fits everyone. Different body types will lean toward different styles. For example, if your legs are on the longer side, you may want slightly longer shorts. If you have shorter legs, the longer-style shorts may be too much fabric and look overwhelming. And the same goes for the rise of a pair of shorts. High-rise is flattering for most body types, but petite women might favor mid-rise styles.

3. Fabric

The fabric shorts are made of can range from denim to linen to cotton and just about everything in between. To pick the material, consider what occasion you are buying shorts for. If you want something light and breezy for hot summer days, you may want to opt for linen or gauze. If you want a formal pair for the office, look for polyester or satin. And for comfy days at home, gardening or running errands, athletic or sweat shorts will be your best bet.

The 16 best shorts for women over 50

Keep scrolling to see for our favorite shorts for women over 50 that run the gamut from denim to linen to dress shorts.

Old Navy Extra High-Waisted Taylor Trouser Shorts
Old Navy

Old Navy Extra High-Waisted Taylor Trouser Shorts

Striped shorts are a classic, and we love that these can be dressed up or down. Just throw on a solid tee and sandals for a casual daytime outing, or dress them up with a blazer and heels for dinner.

The Colette Shorts by Maeve: Limoncello Edition
Maeve/Anthropologie

The Colette Shorts by Maeve: Limoncello Edition

How cute is this lemon art on these white shorts? Lemon print is everywhere this season, and these do the trend perfectly without making the print too busy. We also like the front pockets for extra detailing and more room to hold things when on the go.

Pixie Denim Boyfriend Shorts
Mavi

Mavi Pixie Denim Boyfriend Shorts

Jean shorts that have a bit of stretch make for comfort that lasts all day. This pair is made from 100% organic cotton, so the fabric truly has great stretch and softness. Plus, they’re sustainable, giving it extra bonus points in our book.

Abercrombie & Fitch High Rise Dad Short
Abercrombie & Fitch

Abercrombie & Fitch High Rise Dad Short

Pinstripes never go out style! These are high rise, have a 5-inch inseam and wont uncomfortably or tightly cling to thighs.

LOFT Peyton Shorts in Seashell Linen Blend
LOFT

LOFT Peyton Shorts in Seashell Linen Blend

Heading somewhere tropical for your summer vacation? Pack this bright and fun pair of shorts in your suitcase to make a stunning statement. Pair with a neutral knit tank, an orange or white tee or a jean jacket.

Lane Bryant Boyfriend Fit Midi Jean Short
Lane Bryant

Lane Bryant Boyfriend Fit Midi Jean Short

We can’t find a more perfect pair jean shorts for women over 50. The chic cuff detailing at the bottom adds the perfect style touch, and they are just the right length without looking too long or too short. They are available in plus sizes, going up to a size 38/40.

Abercrombie & Fitch Vintage Sunday Short
Abercrombie & Fitch

Abercrombie & Fitch Vintage Sunday Short

If you’re looking for a comfy pair of sweat shorts to lounge around or run errands in, this option is perfect for you. This pair is oh-so-soft and feels luxurious without a hefty price tag. They are also high rise with an elastic stretch waistband, and feature side pockets.

LOFT Monroe Chino Shorts with 6 Inch Inseam
LOFT

Monroe Chino Shorts with 6 Inch Inseam

Khaki shorts are a staple to have in your wardrobe, as they go with just about anything. We like this pair because of its high waist, soft material with a bit of stretch and 6-inch inseam.

Lane Bryant High-Rise Utility Jean Short
Lane Bryant

Lane Bryant High-Rise Utility Jean Short

How cute are these utility-style jean shorts? The front pockets are extra deep which not only add a chic touch but are more practical to keep small essentials in. They are high-waisted with a 5.5-inch inseam, and are available in sizes 12 to 38/40,

LOFT Pleated Shorts in Emory with 7 Inch Inseam
LOFT

LOFT Pleated Shorts in Emory with 7 Inch Inseam

You’ll look office-ready effortlessly with this pair of formal trouser shorts. The front pleats create a polished, tailored style and the matching belt adds the perfect touch of flair. And if you want to dress them down, throw on a jean jacket and white tee.

Dynamite Denim Jorts
Dynamite

Dynamite Denim Jorts

The wide-leg style of these Bermuda shorts feel extra roomy and breathable, and we like that they can be dressed up or down. Pair them with kitten heels (like the model has on) for dinner or drinks or pair with white sneakers or flat sandals for a daytime look.

White House Black Market Belted Paperbag Fluid Wash Short
White House Black Market

White House Black Market Belted Paperbag Fluid Wash Short

A black pair of shorts is another must to have in your closet for their versatility. This pair features a tie belt to highlight the waist and add a touch of feminine flair.

Talbots Airy Gauze Pull-On Shorts
Talbots

Talbots Airy Gauze Pull-On Shorts

Looking for the best beach shorts? Toss these easy-breezy gauze shorts on as a cover up for a trip to the water or with a white tank and sneakers for a walk around the neighborhood.

American Eagle Strigid Super High-Waisted Relaxed Denim Short
American Eagle/Getty

American Eagle Strigid Super High-Waisted Relaxed Denim Short

If you prefer shorts a bit on the shorter side, without looking too short, these jean shorts are for you. They have a 3.5-inch inseam, which works well for those with shorter legs.

Ann Taylor The Metro Short
Ann Taylor

Ann Taylor The Metro Short

Nothing says summer like a pair of classic white shorts! This length works on just about everyone, and they aren’t tight or clingy to thighs. Made with cotton and spandex, they’ll feel ultra soft with a bit of stretch.

White House Black Market Belted Utility Short
White House Black Market

White House Black Market Belted Utility Short

Satin takes short to the next level, making them look luxe and polished while still feeling comfortable and roomy. The belt on this pair ensures the perfect fit, and it has deep pockets as a bonus.


For more of our favorite summer styles, click through these stories:

How to Embrace Your Style in Your 50s: Stacy London, Jennie Garth and More Inspirational Fashion Icons

19 Ways To Wear Butter Yellow, Plus How the Trending Color Is Flattering for Women Over 40

37 Best Wedding Guest Dresses for Women Over 50, According to Celebrity Stylists

More Stories

Use left and right arrow keys to navigate between menu items. Use right arrow key to move into submenus. Use escape to exit the menu. Use up and down arrow keys to explore. Use left arrow key to move back to the parent list.