The Jogger Search: A Perfect Travel & Everyday Pant

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So, last fall I realized black joggers can be one of the most versatile pieces in your closet.They’re comfy but you can easily make them look chic with fun boots and a cool leather jacket.

I adored them as travel pants for my trip to London last fall. This knit pair was SO soft and comfy for the long long flight from the West Coast. But…

The problem? This inexpensive jersey knit pair stretched to high heaven by the time I arrived in London (this pic is from Vancouver, B.C. at the beginning of the trip.) OMG. We arrived jet lagged AND I had saggy baggy knees. No good. Needless to say, I did not take a picture of that. SO when we got to our friend’s flat I had to bother with washing them because I planned to wear them at least once more on our trip. Lame.

The Search For The Most Versatile Jogger

Since then, I’ve been on the hunt for a good pair that won’t stretch out but will still give me the same look and comfort level. Most joggers I found online were sweats or the same jersey knit, but then I headed to Athleta at the suggestion of a few readers to try out a variety of fits in non-wrinkle, non-baggy fabrics.

The Metro Slouch

This pair looks adorable online. It’s cool that you can adjust the slouch. The fabric is a little heavier on these than some of the other pairs, but nice and sturdy for that reason. And I think they are pretty cute with some shoes, but I need a pair that works with all shoes, so I moved on. Wearing XS Petite.

Tee | Metro Slouch Pants | Boots | Sandals

The Soho Jogger

These are so soft and light weight. They have zipper pockets and a ribbed cuff at the bottom. They’re good. They’re comfy enough even for a long flight. They’re flattering and they’re a great length for either boots or flats/sneakers. I’m leaning towards these as my final choice. Wearing size 2 Petite.

Tee | Soho Jogger Pants | Boots

The Trekkie Jogger 2.0

I LOVE the fit of these. I love the elastic cuff at the ankle. They’re heavier than the Soho and more like the fabric of the Slouch, so not as comfy in hot weather and not as soft as the Soho, but still fine and wearable for the majority of the year. I’m not 100% sold on the patch pockets, but I think being black they don’t bother me. They would if they were a lighter color though. These have a double button and zip closure whereas the Soho have a soft stretch waistband. Wearing size 2 Petite.

Tee | Trekkie Jogger 2.0 Pants | Boots

The Wander Slim Crop

These are good. They’re a great fitted pant for work or everyday and they’re so flattering. But they’re not a jogger. They definitely fit like a ponte pant. They also have a center zipper up the back and it is NOT easy to get in and out of. Dang it. Not worth it for every time you have to pee, IMO. But gah, so flattering. Maybe going up one size would have made that easier. Wearing size 2 Petite.

Tee | Wander Slim Crop Pants | Boots

The Metro Street Jogger

So, these were confusing. They’re actually the first pair I tried, in-store, and brought them home. I even styled them up two ways thinking I’d do a post on that. But after looking at the photos. NO. They’re essentially leggings or running pants, IMO. Not sure what drew me to them in the first place, but I definitely like some of the other choices better after trying those. This fabric is more of a poly knit blend they call Pilayo and I just don’t think it’s as flattering. Even though Athleta runs large in general, maybe sizing up in these would give more of a jogger fit. Wearing XS petite here and started out with XXS regular (not pictured).

Tee | Metro Street Jogger Pants | Boots

The Aspire Ankle Pant

These are comfy and cute and the same soft fabric as the Soho. When I tried all these on they were my favorite, so I tried a few outfits with them. But looking at these again I’m not in love with them with sneakers (see below), which is important to me for a versatile pant, especially one I’ll take for traveling. Wearing a 2 Regular here. The 2 Petite was out of stock. I’m liking the cuffed look though for a little more slouch at the ankle.

Tee | Aspire Pants | Boots

Leather jacket | Tee | Aspire Pants | Boots | Denim Jacket | Hoodie | Sneakers

Shop Athleta Joggers

The Winner?

My top three are the Aspire Ankle Pant, The Soho Jogger and the Trekkie Jogger. The Aspire and the Soho are both the lighter Featherweight material so they’ll be good for spring, summer and fall, but the Trekkie would be best for cooler weather and they’re a little more forgiving being a bit heavier fabric. The Trekkie would be great as an actual hiking pant, too, which is a good option here in the NW…but the Trekkie doesn’t seem comfy enough for long travel. Hmm.

I’m leaning towards the Soho because the length is great and the waistband is super soft and I wouldn’t have to deal with cuffing the hem. The best thing? NONE of these will give me the bagged out knees look I wound up with in London, so I can’t go wrong in that sense.

I know many of you have favorites from Athleta. What have you gone with and what have you worn day-in day-out? Thanks for recommending them for the jogger search! Interested to hear your thoughts!

Until next time…

L

Be sure to follow me on Instagram @elletrain to see daily outfits, what I’m currently whipping up in the kitchen, and of course, Sienna’s dance moves.

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About Author

Meet Laura! She's a reader turned contributor and we couldn't be happier to have her as part of the team. Her fun, creative style is, as she says, "somewhere between Madewell and Joan Jett" (YES.) and she delivers some mean dressing room selfies so keep an eye out for those. Fun fact? She loves getting her haircut and we love to see what she has up her sleeve.  

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27 Comments

  1. I love the joggers from Eileen Fisher. Not the place I expected to find them but truly have washed and worn amazingly well. Ended up with three because after the first pair, I snatch them up when they are on sale. My first pair were a sweatshirt material, then I found a pair in silk (these are my favorite) and a pair in a lighter cotton/rayon knit with a dropped crotch that makes them really fun.

  2. Great breakdown of all the jogger styles! Quick note on the metro street jogger. Just returned from spring break in Rome with the family and these pants were lifesavers! They dry quickly yet are a heavier weight fabric so you don’t feel like you are walking around in your jammies. However, my body type is different from yours. I am tall – I wear size small tall. So, taller ladies might want to give these a try. The zipper at the ankle is super cool and the zipper pockets are very travel smart.

  3. I LOVE Athleta for pants that are great for travel, for work and for life in general. I travel for work a ton and these are a lifesaver. My current fav is the Powervita Pant- not technically a jogger but the fit is very similar. they are perfect for long plane rides and then going straight into the office. I have worn them with sneakers, booties and am currently wearing them with heels at the office.

  4. The Aspire Ankle Pants also work great for maternity. They stayed in place under my bump and were more flattering than actual maternity pants.

  5. I suggest photographing black with a LOT more light. It’s so hard to see the details, all of these looked the same to me. But I love this post and I want to find something like this.

  6. Yeah, I agree that these kind of all looked the same on my monitor, but I loved those patch pockets on the Trekkie Jogger 2.0!

  7. You must have read my mind! I am also looking for the perfect jogger this spring and I love Athleta! Thank you for the review. The Soho jogger and the Metro jogger have been on my list to try on.

  8. In the past when I’ve tried athleta joggers they bunch in this weird and needless to say unattractive way at the crotch. I’m hoping maybe they fixed that problem since you don’t mention it here and I don’t think I had the sizing wrong or anything. Has anyone else had this issue with specifically athleta jogger pants? It’s only with the ripstop type fabric that this occurs.

  9. I love Athleta’s Brooklyn ankle pant. It’s the same fabric as the Soho, I believe, but it has some neat ribbed detail and a little vent at the ankle . Not a true jogger, but narrow at ankle. I just wore last week on a work trip w a blouse on the plane, then two other days w tees. They didn’t wrinkle or sag at all and looked cute w every shoe I brought! I’m around your size and got a 2 regular.

  10. I have the Aspire Ankles in grey and love them! I only ever wear them ruched and I wear them with heels, sandals, and sneakers. I haven’t tried them with booties yet. I wore them as maternity and the best part is that the elastic waistband doesn’t twist around. I think Athleta has them in a lined version for cooler weather.

  11. Elizabeth Rafter on

    I have been on a search everywhere for black joggers! I have a pair of Camo joggers from Abercrombie that are perfect, but sadly, they do not make them in black. I’m looking for a skinny jogger in a sweatpants type fabric. I found a pair at Adidas that are the right look, but I don’t love the waistband. I have the globetrotter cropped pants from Athleta that I’m absolutely obsessed with. If they would just make a jogger in the same fabric, my payers would be answered!!! Love this post! So informational and helpful!!!

  12. You aren’t kidding about the Soho joggers – they’re really good! Also something I fell in love with at the Athleta store: the Roaming Romper. Not necessarily plane friendly (hello tiny bathrooms), but great to take on a trip. It can easily be dressed up or down and it’s a similar feeling fabric to the Soho joggers.

  13. I have the Chelsea Cargo pants in dark olive. A very interesting color and I love the fit! Also, Athleta will alter the length for free!

  14. Jennifer Cabler on

    You should know I so appreciate your advice and opinion on clothes. This is the 2nd time I have bought something that you love and I love it too! My soho joggers just arrived and oh my… awesome. Thank-you!!!!!

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