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How to wear chinos

Chino trousers are the perfect look. They are comfortable and functional, ideal for both men and women, with a simple and casual style.

This garment began as part of the uniform of the military in Western colonies in Asia. Over the years, it became popular and has reached our days with some small modifications, but without losing its essence. The facility to wear men's and women's chino trousers with other garments has extended its presence to corporate wear.

What are chino trousers?

The variety of trouser designs available on the market is huge. One of the favourite models for urban outfits are chino trousers. 
Combining men's or women's chino trousers is not as complicated as it seems. For this reason, they are the best alternative to jeans when you are looking for a more formal look.

➡️ A trousers with a long history

The origin of chinos goes back to colonial India in the mid-19th century. British service men wore distinctive trousers made of cotton or linen fabric, similar to gabardine, with diagonally crossed threads. They were khaki, a greenish-grey shade much more appropriate for uniforms than lighter colours. 

Decades later, the US Army incorporated them into their clothing. The original chinos were wide-legged, fitted at the waist and had no darts. They had two side pockets with a sharp angle, a watch pocket and two horizontal, button-fastened back pockets. 

American college students quickly adopted this garment after World War II. In the 1960s, a slim-fit design emerged, with a slim fit leg.

In the late 1970s, offices that required a suit and tie began to promote Casual Friday: on Fridays, people were allowed to work in chinos. The trend spread across Europe from the 1990s onwards. 

➡️ Characteristics of this type of trousers 

The colour par excellence of this type of trousers is light brown, followed by navy blue and beige, although the range of shades nowadays is very wide. 

To appreciate the difference between chino trousers and dress trousers, let's take a look at the characteristics of the first one:

  • 100% cotton fabric or with elastane, a fiber that provides greater comfort and allows it to adapt to the current trend SLIM fit.
  • Well-fitted silhouette at the hip, slightly higher than the dress trousers.
  • Waistband with belt loops and button or zip fastening.
  • Two front French pockets, at hip level and very oblique cut.

One or two horizontal back pockets with piping. They are usually fastened with a button. 

This pattern suits men and women very well, making it suitable for a casual and comfortable style without losing the elegance of dress trousers.

Difference between chino trousers and dress trousers

With or without darts, high or low rise, slim or straight cut... The design possibilities of a pair of trousers are almost endless. But what is the difference between chino trousers and dress trousers? 

These are the characteristics of the more formal trousers: 

  • It can be made of very different fabrics, although the usual ones are fine wool and polyester, with or without blending. 
  • Depending on fashion trends, they may have one or two darts at the front. They are also available without darts. 
  • The correct way to combine dress trousers is shirt and blazer. 
  • They combine exclusively with the most formal footwear: Oxford, moccasins, derbies, etc.
  • They combine with serious colours, such as charcoal grey or navy blue.

One of the great advantages of chinos is that they are machine washable and easy to iron. For this reason, they are perfect as dress trousers for work

Tips to wear chinos

The possibilities for combining men's or women's chino trousers are enormous. This garment adapts to fashion trends and allows you to experiment with different textures, colors and styles. 

For a more casual look, chino trousers can be combined with an Oxford shirt or polo shirt. Plain shirts are a good choice for a more classic style. For more formal occasions, it is a good idea to choose a dark color trousers with a light color shirt.

The length and the right footwear for this type of trousers are the keys to get it right. If the cut is slim fit, the ideal is for the chino to reach the shoe, slightly grazing the heel. As for what shoes to wear with chino trousers, it all depends on the occasion. A casual, youthful look can be achieved by turning up the hem a couple of notches and wearing trainers. 

For the less daring, the classic options are better: chino trousers with ankle boots, loafers or lace-up shoes. They never fail.

Chino trousers, the best alternative for your corporate wardrobe

Chino trousers are not only elegant and combinable. Their features make them an excellent alternative for workwear:

  • They are resistant and durable.
  • They are made of comfortable and elastic fabrics.
  • They do not require great care.
  • They are loose-fitting and allow freedom of movement.
  • They have large, secure pockets.
  • They have belt loops.
  • They provide a professional appearance.
  • They are suitable for both men and women.


Today, it is possible to find workwear chinos with stain-resistant and water-repellent treatments. At Norvil, we have introduced a men's and women's chino with a youthful look. It stands out because it incorporates fun, colorful details on the inside. With a fabric that incorporates linen and elastane, which allows the regulation of body temperature. Ideal for spring and summer.

Available in two colours: classic military green and sand. A great choice to create the actual look you are looking for and that you can't miss.