It’s not always easy to find the right khakis for fat guys.
You’re usually left looking like you’re wearing a potato sack or you end up with clothing that’s tight in all the wrong places.
I’ve often thought that the only thing that seems to actually fit are sweatpants.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. If you’re willing to do little research, or just let me handle it, you can find great clothing even for big bodies. It took me a long time to find khakis that actually work for fat guys and I’m glad I did.
The khaki is one of the most versatile items of clothing you can find and it really goes with just about everything. You can wear these bad boys to a business casual work setting, out to brunch on Sunday or even for a night on the town. Khakis do it all.
We’re going to go over everything fat guys need to know about finding the perfect pair of khakis but if you just want to skip ahead and see what made the list you can check them out here:
- Best Overall: Harbor Bay by DXL Big and Tall Waist-Relaxer Khaki
- Runner Up: Savane Men’s Flat Front Performance Pant
- Best Pleated Khaki On A Budget: Dockers Signature Khaki Lux Cotton Pleated Stretch Pants
- Best on a Budget Without Pleats: Dockers Men’s Classic Fit Easy Khaki Pants
- Best for Big Thighs: Amazon Essentials Men’s Big & Tall Relaxed-fit Stretch Khaki Pant
- Best Heavy Duty Work Khakis: Carhartt Men’s Relaxed Fit Twill Khaki Pant
- Best Dress Khaki For Fat Guys: Dockers Men’s Straight Fit Workday Khaki Smart 360 Flex Pant
Let’s get into it!
What Should Big Guys Look For In Khakis?
Big guys are going to have different requirements when it comes to any clothing, including khakis.
Let’s take a quick look at what fat guys should look for in a perfect pair of khakis.
Pleats Could Go Either Way
As with any fashion, there’s always going to be some debate as to whether or not it’s in…or out.
That’s no different for pleats which are simply a type of fold that’s found on the front of some pants, including khakis.
Yes, they’re often associated with grandpas and old men but they are making a comeback. They can also look great on bigger bodies.
Clothing looks better when it’s proportionate to your body. It’s not about hiding your shape, instead, it’s about complementing it. That usually means bigger clothing without turning yourself into a circus tent. It could be things like bigger material on your suspenders or thicker straps on your tank tops but it all works together to match your larger body.
Pleats can do the same thing and help give your body a more proportionate look.
This video does a great job explaining this:
So here’s the main takeaway on pleats: you’re going to hear some folks say that they’re out of fashion but that doesn’t mean you can’t pull it off. Not only can they be more comfortable for fat guys but you might be surprised to find out just how much you like the look as it adds a more balanced overall proportion.
Elastic Waist Bands
As guys, we usually carry most of our fat in our bellies. When we’re standing, that’s not normally a problem even if it means our pants ride a little funny sometimes.
But when we sit, that big belly wants to break free!
That means it either falls over our pants or pushes hard against them. Neither option is really that great.
That’s why I’m a big fan of elastic waistbands on pants for big guys. I’m not talking about a sweatpant’s level of elasticity but you’ll want to find some khakis with some give to them. This will help your pants stay secure in any position and make them more comfortable overall since they’ll be moving with you instead of against you.
Elastic waistbands go by different names but you’ll rarely see it simply called an elastic waistband. Instead, brands will use some flashier names like “waist relaxer” or “expandable waistband”. In many cases, they’ll also include the exact amount that the waistband can expand.
It’s typical to find waistbands that can expand 3 to 4 inches and while you should still get the size that’s right for you, it’s great to have some extra room.
Get The Right “Fit”
I don’t mean order the right size, hopefully, we’re all on the same page with that!
But these days pants not only have the traditional length and waist measurements but each brand of khakis has specific “cuts” within these sizes. The most common ones you’ll see are:
This can get a little confusing, at least for me but for the most part fat guys should avoid the skinny and slim cuts. Yes, you can absolutely fit in them depending on the size but if you want to play it safe then go for athletic, relaxed or straight.
Athletic cuts are designed for muscular dudes with big thighs but these can also work great for fat guys, too. They aren’t quite the same as a relaxed fit but they’re a much better option compared to a skinny or slim fit and it’s a great cut for fat guys.
Relaxed, also sometimes called Husky in jeans, are built for us. These are usually all around looser, especially around the butt and thigh area. Always a good option.
Then there’s a straight fit. Straight cut doesn’t have anything special, including any extra leg room, but if get the right size you shouldn’t have a problem here either.
You’ll find several different cuts or styles on this list, including a more formal tapered option, but we’ll be skipping anything that marketed as skinny or slim since those options just don’t make a lot of sense for us.
I know, I know.
Khakis are all khaki-colored, right?
That’s true for the most part but these days you can find khaki-style pants in every color under the sun. Don’t worry, you can get every pair of khakis on this list in the traditional khaki color. But once I find a pair of pants that work for me, I usually grab a couple in the same color.
If that sounds like you as well, you’ll have several khakis on this list where you can grab more than one color so you can stock up on what works.
You can find khaki pants in just about every material you can think of. We’re not going to cover every single combination but in most cases, we want some kind of blend. Cotton is great for fat guys because it lets us breathe but we also want some kind of synthetic material that will give the pants a little stretch.
Not enough stretch means an uncomfortable belly in the best case scenario and a full blow rip in the butt in the worst case scenario.
In other words, having some synthetic material mixed in with a natural fiber gives us the chance to bend over without fear and that’s a good thing!
What we don’t want to do is go 100% stretch or 100% synthetic. Trust me, I’ve been there done that. While it’s nice to have stretchy pants that can handle anything those things get hot. Like, really hot.
You know just how problematic that is but needless to say we’ll be avoiding pants that don’t have at least a little breathability.
Wait…What’s The Difference Between Khakis and Chinos?
In the real world…there isn’t much of a difference at all between these two pants.
Brands will use the terms interchangeably which can certainly make it confusing. Things get even more confusing when you consider that chinos can come in the khaki color.
So what’s the difference?
According to the experts at He Spoke Style, “Chino pants, are made with a lightweight cotton or cotton blend fabric and have visible stitching, which gives them a more finished, formal and dressy look.” On the other hand, khakis have hidden stitching which these style experts say gives them a more casual style.
Other experts suggest that khakis are less tapered and still others bring up the issue of cuffs.
To be honest, I’ve always thought that khakis were more formal and chinos were the more casual option. When it came to dressing business casual for work, khakis were the go-to option but I’m far from a fashion expert.
I’m just a fat dude that wants to look good. I also know that chinos are usually quite tight on my body. I’ve got nothing wrong with that look if you can pull it off but I also want to feel good and that’s where khakis have always worked well for me.
So for the rest of this article, we’re not going to go too crazy trying to make a big distinction between chinos and khakis. Instead, we’ll focus on pants that the average dude would consider to be khakis and turn our attention to fit, style, and of course comfort.
Best Khakis For Fat Guys
With the background information out of the way, it’s time to look at our favorite options.
Best Overall: Harbor Bay by DXL Big and Tall Waist-Relaxer Khaki
- Waist size available up to size 66 which is great for fat guys
- 8 color options to pick from
- Waist relaxer band gives you an extra 4 inches of wiggle room
Our best overall pick comes from Harbor Bay and it’s hard to go wrong with these pants.
To start with, they’re 100% cotton which means “the boys” can breathe. I don’t need to tell you how important that really is. There are a lot of khakis out there, especially when it comes to big and tall styles, that don’t get a lot of airflows because they’re made of super stretchy material.
While that can be good, excessive sweat where the sun don’t shine isn’t a worthy trade off.
Then there’s what they call their waist relaxer band. This is really just an elastic band with an upper limit on it but this can comfortably stretch the waist of the pants out an additional 4 inches. You’ll still wait to get the right size, and there are plenty to choose from up to a 66 waist, but the extra give in the band can make these khakis much more comfortable.
You won’t have the feeling of your pants digging into you when you sit, instead, these khakis will expand with your body rather than fighting against it. You and your belly can become one with the khakis instead of constantly battling against them!
If these work for you, and I’m confident that they will work for most fat guys, you’ve got 8 color options to choose from so can double down.
These are also marketed as big and tall and they have lengths available up to 38 which should cover fat guys as tall as 6′ 8″ or so.
You can check out all the color options along with reviews and the latest price on Amazon by clicking here.
Runner Up: Savane Men’s Flat Front Performance Pant
- Waist size available up to size 60
- Basic, simple and budget-friendly
- Elastic waistband makes sitting more comfortable
I’m a big fan of Savane and these khakis were my go-to for years. Before I found these, I was constantly struggling with another brand and I’m honestly not sure why I put up with ripped pants for so long.
To be clear, I wasn’t wearing ripped pants but it did feel like my previous pants were liable to rip at any moment. In large part, I don’t think I realized just how good a proper pair of khakis could be. The big gamechanger here was the elastic waistband. That meant that bending over no longer put maximum stress on the backside of the pants and I could freely lift things as required by my job.
You know, without ripping the butt out. Kind of a big deal.
But the Savane brand isn’t just good compared to other pants that are too tight, these khakis are great a choice on their own. As I’ve already mentioned, the elastic waistband makes a huge difference and it’s designed with an upper limit so it doesn’t just endlessly expand. Instead, it’s almost as these pants move with you when sitting down or bending over.
Some fat guys will even find that they can get away with skipping a belt when wearing these which can be a major positive for some folks.
The legs are roomy but not baggy and feature a standard straight cut. You’ll also find sizing up to 60W and with the elastic waistband, you can even push that a little further.
So if I love these so much why did they only get the runner-up spot?
Unfortunately, certain colors go in and out of stock pretty quickly. It’s not always the case, but it’s enough to move them down to the runner-up spot. If you’re flexible on color, then you shouldn’t have a problem finding the right size. But if you’re deadset on a specific color, you might find that it’s not available- at least today.
Still, these are a great option for fat guys and if you’re big and tall you can also find some great length choices up to 38L as well. With more 700 five-star reviews at the time of writing, I’m far from the only fat guy who likes these pants.
You can check the available size and color options, along with all the reviews, on Amazon by clicking here.
Best Pleated Khaki On A Budget: Dockers Signature Khaki Lux Cotton Pleated Stretch Pants
- Fat guy friendly sizes up to 60 waist
- Pleated which can look great on big bodies
- Easy on the budget
Pants can be expensive, especially for me because I can really put a hurting on my khakis. That means no matter what brand I get they don’t last the way they should for most folks so it often makes more sense to go budget-friendly and just replace them sooner.
That’s where this pleated big and tall khaki from Dockers comes in. You probably already know the Dockers brand, they’ve got a reputation for being solid and these pants are no different. At the time of writing, they’re backed by more than 3,000 five-star reviews and there are reviews across the internet from other fat guys.
As we’ve seen in other great options for fat dudes, these khakis have a special waistband to add a little extra stretch and these Docker’s give you an extra 2 inches on the waist. Again, don’t count on the extendable waist too much and size as normal but it does help make these pants a little more functional for fat guys. It’s not the same as the 4 inches we saw in our best overall but it certainly helps.
These are also the first khakis on the list that include pleats and for some guys, that’s going to be a deal-breaker. Pleats get a bit of a bad name but these really can look good on bigger bodies! Not only do they add a little balance to your look but they prevent things from getting too tight in the area above your goods but below your belly button. It’s honestly kind of a weird spot for everyone and pleats make sure you’re not dealing with too much tightness there.
I wouldn’t want to be the “pleats guy” and have a full wardrobe of only pleated pants but I’m a big fan of working them into the rotation. It’s also worth pointing out that these aren’t the crazy quadruple pleats you’d see in the ’80s. Compared to that, these are pretty mild and honestly add some character to these khakis.
You can check out the latest price, all those five-star reviews, and get a better look at the pleats on Amazon by clicking here.
Best on a Budget Without Pleats: Dockers Men’s Classic Fit Easy Khaki Pants
- Available up to size 60W
- 10 different color options allow you to stick with what works
Even if pleats aren’t your thing, I still recommend the Dockers brand if you want to stay easy on the budget. These don’t have an extendable waist as we’ve seen in other khakis on this list but they are stretchable with a mix of cotton, polyester, and elastane.
That will make these pants a little less breathable for some guys, but if you’re wearing these indoors for the most part that shouldn’t be a problem. While they might not be as breathable, it’s a trade-off for extra stretch which can go a long way. Sure, having a stretch waist is nice but when your entire pants stretch with you it’s another level.
You’ve also go 10 color options to choose from so if you like the fit, you can just grab more in different shades.
As with other Docker’s khakis, these bad boys are easy on the budget so they’re easy to replace if you know that you put a lot of stress on your pants.
You can check out all 10 colors options, read more reviews and see the latest price on Amazon by clicking here.
Best for Big Thighs: Amazon Essentials Men’s Big & Tall Relaxed-fit Stretch Khaki Pant
- Available up to size 60W
- Stretchable material adds extra comfort
- Relaxed fit throughout is perfect for big thighs
Amazon is coming out with more and more of their own products and they’re usually pretty darn good. I’m actually typing this up on an Amazon keyboard.
But what about pants…for a big dude with big thighs?
Yep, they deliver here too and these Amazon Essential pants are a great option for staying easy on the budget while avoiding pleats if our other budget pick just wasn’t your style.
While these don’t have an extendable waistband, at least not in the same way that the others on this list have, these pants will still move with you and won’t fight you every time you bend over. They’re also a relaxed fit which is something that we looked for in our best jeans for fat guys but it works great for khakis too.
I know the whole relaxed thing can get a little confusing so let me clarify exactly what this means. You’ll want to buy the same size you normally would and while it might be a little looser around the waist the real beauty of relaxed fit is in the butt and thighs. Relaxed fit cuts give you plenty of extra room in these areas and that makes these a great choice for dudes that carry more of their weight there.
A relaxed fit is a good choice if you find straight cut too restricting even when you pick the right size. If you’re a fat guy that also carries a lot of muscle in your legs then you know exactly what I’m talking about.
Besides being big thigh-friendly, these also look great and come in 6 different color options. My personal favorite is the dark gray.
You can check out all the colors along with today’s price on Amazon by clicking here.
Best Heavy Duty Work Khakis: Carhartt Men’s Relaxed Fit Twill Khaki Pant
- Extra pockets and left leg hammer loop are great for working guys
- Simple, clean, no-frills design
- Relaxed fit in the seat and thigh
Working fat guys may not be dressing business casual but will still need a great pair of khakis that can handle daily wear and tear. That’s exactly what these heavy-duty Carhartt khakis were built for and while they certainly aren’t flashy they get the job done.
Made of 100% cotton, these khakis are sturdy and breathable with a handful of extra pockets to store whatever you need throughout the day. If you’re doing any kind of carpentry or construction work, you’ll appreciate the hammer loop that can work for other tools as well.
The only downside is that these no-frills khakis don’t have an extendable waist or stretchy material throughout. Still, they are a relaxed fit khaki which means they’ve got extra room in the thighs and butt. If you’re a guy whose weight fluctuates quite a bit then the lack of an elastic waistband could be a bit of a deal-breaker.
But if you’re fat but stable in weight, know your size, and want something that can keep up with your job these can be a great fit.
These khakis also have more than 9,000 five-star reviews at the time of writing which is pretty serious. However, one of the top complaints about these khakis across the internet has to do with sizing.
It’s not uncommon for Carhartt pants to run small and while I love the brand it can be a pain in the butt for the unprepared fat guy. If you’ve worn Carhartt before then you know what I’m talking about but I highly recommend sizing up two to three sizes on these.
I know that most folks say they run true to size but it’s still a good idea to leave yourself some room on these and play it safe. Snag a nice pair of fat-friendly suspenders to make up the difference and thank me later. The only other downside here is that these only size up to 50 waist. When you consider that these usually run small, you can see the problem here and these might not work for every fat guy.
If you want to read more reviews and check the latest price you can see it all on Amazon by clicking here.
Best Dress Khaki For Fat Guys: Dockers Men’s Straight Fit Workday Khaki Smart 360 Flex Pant
- Big and tall sizing up to 60 waist and 36 length
- Formal and elegant tapered look that's rare to find in big and tall clothing
- Stretchable fabric without looking like stretchable fabric
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again…just because we’re fat doesn’t mean we need to wear clothes that fit like a potato sack.
Too many fat guys shy away from anything besides baggy clothing which puts them in a constant state of casually dressed. While that can work most of the time, there are some cases where you need to look a little more formal without going over the type.
But what does formal look like when it comes to khakis?
The guys at Art of Manliness explain “When going for a more formal look, choose a pair made with a fine, lightweight twill and trouser-like tailoring — a leg that tapers to the ankle, and possibly features details like a tab closure and cuffs.”
We aren’t quite taking things to the cuff and closure level but these Dockers khakis feature a tapered leg and big and tall sizing. That’s a bit of a rare combination and breaks the baggy clothing for big guys mold.
We’ll also find a heavy stretch in the waist and stretch throughout the pants so that formal doesn’t have to be mean uncomfortable.
This line from Dockers has 15 different color options but not all of them are available in all sizes, nor are they all tapered. If you’re going for a dressier look, make sure you see the word “tapered” next to the color you’ve selected.
You can check out all the color choices and see today’s price on Amazon by clicking here.
There you have it, 7 awesome khakis for fat guys that cover every situation from casual wear, to on-the-job and even a more formal khaki mixed it.
These days, khakis come in a lot more color options than just khaki so once you’ve found a pair that works for you, I always recommend doubling down and just adding in new colors of the same pants.
What do you think? Which one is your favorite?