The Most Flattering Paper Bag Pants & Shorts for Summer

Want to flatter your figure in an instant? Wear something that gives you a high, cinched waist. Enter: paper bag pants and shorts, a style of bottoms that hit high on the waist, suck you in, and tend to have an adjustable waistline. It's a style made for the us girls who always have room for dessert, but still want to look cute. Everyone from Jennifer Lopez to Gigi and Bella Hadid to Kendall Jenner to Romee Strijd (who just wore paper bag shorts to Coachella) has been spotted sporting the trend.

From wide-leg pants to short-shorts, scroll down for 13 paper bag bottom styles that will show off your curves and keep you comfortable no matter the occasion (or if you decide to get the appetizer, dinner, and dessert at date night).

Woman wearing red paper bag shorts and a white crop top photo

1 of 13

Forever 21 High-Rise Paper Bag Shorts

If you're like me and gravitate toward a skirt or dress over a pair of shorts, you know that sometimes a windy day will ruin those plans! That's why we love these Forever 21 paper bag shorts. They're the best of both worlds; you have the volume of a full and fun skirt, but the coverage of shorts that won't blow up no matter how hard the wind blows. This short also features a partially elasticized waist, which is a unique design detail from other paper bag waist bottoms. ($18; forever21.com)

shop these forever 21 shorts

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of chambray paper bag pants photo

2 of 13

Eloquii Chambray Paper Bag Waist Culotte

Jeans are hot during the summer months, so get the look of jeans without suffering through sweating with these chambray culottes. They're made of a breathable, stretchy woven fabric and elastic waist that will keep you cooler, and comfier, than any vintage Levi's will. Plus these culottes will work amazingly with that new pair of sky-high platform sandals you've been dying to bust out. ($60; eloquii.com)

get these eloquii chambray culottes

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of vertically striped rainbow paper bag shorts photo

3 of 13

Gap High Rise Paper Bag Shorts

Patterns and prints add dimension and interest to outfits and keep solid pieces from becoming boring. A simple vertical stripe gives the illusion of lengthening your legs and carries your gaze upward. The linen fabric and paper bag waist transform these shorts into a stylish item that you can wear to dressier events with a summertime blouse. ($50; gap.com)

shop these striped gap shorts
Woman wearing a pair of black paper bag pants photo

4 of 13

Prologue Straight Leg Ankle Length Paper Bag Pants

Don't let a dress code make you feel restricted at work — just get creative. These black paper bag pants from Target can easily work with your business attire wardrobe with the help of comfortable heel, blouse, and blazer. It's a way to wear this trendy waistline while remaining appropriate for the office. Pick up these pants the next time you need to restock on your go-to drugstore mascara. ($28; target.com)

get these target paper bag pants

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of mustard yellow paper bag shorts photo

5 of 13

O'Neill Cameron Paper Bag Shorts

Forget fussing about with zippers, buttons, or hooks and eyes. For simple summer outfits, throw on a pair of these O'Neill shorts. They slide on quickly, thanks to the elastic paper bag waistband that lands at a flattering high waist. We even suggest wearing these shorts as a quick cover-up to the pool for when you're running out the door in a pinch and need to cover your bum. ($40; nordstrom.com)

shop these o'neill shorts

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing leopard print paper bag shorts photo

6 of 13

Eloquii Paper Bag Waist Short with Belt

Take a walk on the wild side with these leopard print paper bag shorts from Eloquii. As far as we're concerned, leopard print is a neutral. It will spice up any look that's bordering on bland without going over the top. Eloquii's inclusive sizing, which ranges from size 14 to 28, allows everyone to get on the paper bag short trend. Just make sure you throw on some sunscreen before stepping out in these leggy short-shorts. ($55; eloquii.com)

get these leopard print shorts

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing red paper bag pants and matching red blazer photo

7 of 13

H&M Paper Bag Pants

Bolder is better. Why play it safe with a neutral pair of pants (which you already have filling your drawers) and instead opt for a crimson red pair. This paper bag pant from H&M has a tailored feel with crisp pleats and a flattering ankle-length hem. If you do end up getting these pants (how could you not), you also have to get the matching blazer for a gorgeous monochromatic ensemble. ($35; hm.com)

shop these red hot pants

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing tan utility paper bag shorts photo

8 of 13

Free People Cindy Utility Shorts

Two trends, one pair of shorts. You've probably seen the utility fashion trend happening on the runways at the moment, and while we love a good jumpsuit, a boiler suit is a little confining when the weather hits above 80 degrees. So for utility on hot days we're turning to these Free People paper bag shorts. These have the strong twill fabric, large pockets, and sturdy hardware you'll find in the utility trend, but with an attractive cinched waist that keeps the design details from being overpowering. ($88; shopbop.com)

get these utility shorts

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of pink and white vertically striped paper bag pants photo

9 of 13

Nordstrom x Hi Sugarplum! Sedona Wide Leg Ankle Pants

We love ourselves a Nordstrom and blogger collaboration collection, so when we saw this wide-leg, paper bag pant by Hi Sugarplum! it was an instant "add to cart." The fabric is lightweight, the paper bag waist is flattering, and the wide-leg pant is an easy, breezy summer style. Grab a summery straw tote, sandals, an airy tank, and hit up the local outdoor market in these chic pants. ($59; nordstrom.com)

shop these striped nordstrom x hi sugarplum pants

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of grey paper bag waist shorts with a neon green belt photo

10 of 13

UO Cleo Belted Paper Bag Utility Short

Trying to wear some neon green this summer without looking like highlighter? Urban Outfitters has got you covered with this subtle but stylish belt that comes with a pair of grey paper bag shorts. The playful pop of color that contrasts the bottoms is equally of the moment as the silhouette. This belt and short duo is a style steal, and you can even remove the belt to wear with other outfits. ($49; urbanoutfitters.com)

get these urban outfitters shorts

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of vertically striped white and cream button front paper bag shorts photo

11 of 13

Abercrombie & Fitch Paper Bag Waist Linen Shorts

Gone are the days of half-dressed models and clothing plastered with logos, Abercrombie is back with clothes that won't give you middle school throwbacks, and these paper bag shorts are the perfect example. Constructed with a button-up, high-rise waist with an adjustable tie, these shorts are a cute alternative to your circulation of denim cutoffs. They also come in an additional stripe option as well as three solid color choices so you can treat yourself to more than one pair of this flattering cut. ($54; abercrombie.com)

shop these a&f shorts

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of denim paper bag waist jeans photo

12 of 13

Prosperity Denim Paper Bag Waist Skinny Jeans

We know we were knocking jeans in summer earlier, but we know some of you denim devotees won't be able to quit them! So, we found you a paper bag jeans option to rock. Because denim is rigid and doesn't manipulate as readily as, for example, a linen, Prosperity Denim designed a cute frill to peek above the waistband that gives the illusion of a paper bag look. These jeans also have a denim tie belt that adds an extra touch to these otherwise traditional jeans. ($72; nordstrom.com)

get these paper bag skinny jeans

Shop Similar Products

Woman wearing a pair of pink acid wash paper bag shorts photo

13 of 13

Free People Olivia Paper Bag Shorts

There's no better time to bust out the pastels than spring and summer. Acid wash is a denim trend that has been controversial among the fashion community, but this pink style from Free People has us becoming converts. The paper bag shorts have more of a tie-dye trend feel than true acid wash, which is amplified by Free People's styling with the bandeau top. Wear these shorts in a print-on-print style to a festival this summer with the latest sunglasses and you're sure to be one of the best dressed there. ($98; freepeople.com)

shop these acid wash shorts

Shop Similar Products

This item has been added to your list