Shorts might be the most divisive piece of clothing in your summer wardrobe, so much so that we've dedicated multiple pieces to them — we've debated the best combinations of shorts and sneakers, wondered how jorts are back in our wardrobes, and made memes about Robert Pattinson's massive cargo shorts — we've been paying a lot of attention to the skimpiest part of your outfit. However, things are about to get a lot more polarizing. Enter — short shorts.
Over the last few summers, TikTok became obsessed with short shorts, namely ones with a 5-inch inseam. It was a hilarious time on the app with endless transformation videos where men pulled off their frumpy knee-length shorts to reveal thigh-bearing shorts, while the background music shouted "Oh my god so handsome." Basically, these videos were the sartorial equivalent of the bookish girl in a rom-com taking down her ponytail and suddenly becoming hot.
But for this summer we thought the never-ending short's inseam debate had been settled with long shorts, seeing pairs reach almost 3/4 length territory on the runway. That's until Glover has put a spanner in the works by stepping out during the current heatwave in New York topless wearing a tiny pair of mustard yellow shorts and reminding us of the power of short shorts.
In 2020 we had that viral photo of Normal People's Paul Mescal wearing GAA men's shorts, the following year we saw Harry Styles combine short shorts and a cardigan on the set of the movie The Policeman, and Glover has delivered this year's viral moment for the style. And it comes at a time when he is busier than ever.
Only last week was the drop of his first New Balance collaboration, with one of the sneakers coming in a similar mustard hue to his tiny shorts, his hit tv-show Atlanta just aired the trailer for season 4, and his red-carpet moments in oversized pastel suits have been nothing short of sartorial perfection.
If you already jumped on the short shorts trend last summer, perhaps Glover can convince you to switch up your inseam to something even tinier. For everyone else, maybe he can inspire you to ignore the big-shorts agenda and let your knees have some sun at least.
Scroll down for the best short shorts for men this summer
adidas x Wales Bonner WB Knit Shorts
The 70s was the last time when short shorts really reigned supreme, so it's a great place to look for inspiration when experimenting with a shorter inseam. Wales Bonner and adidas' continued collaboration takes stylistic cues from the era, and this pair of shorts comes with a matching sweater vest.
Dries van Noten Pooles Shorts
Any shorts that finish high up the thigh are a statement, and when they come in lime green like this Dries pair things only get more eye-catching. With a four-inch inseam, these give a little more protection than most of the other options on this list.
ON Race Shorts
We'd wager that Glover was wearing similar running shorts in the image above — only athletic shorts are cut that small. These On race shorts are cut high on the outer thigh and dip slightly longer on the inner seam.
visvim Nassau Shorts
With an inseam under three inches, these aren't only super short but they're also super tight. This is one for the real short shorts aficionados.
adidas Nylon Volley Short
Football fans will remember their favorite players sporting adidas shorts similar to these in the second half of the 20th century. Add a retro feel to your summer outfits with these classic shorts from adidas.
Standard Cloth Oliver Nylon Short
Standard Cloth knows a thing or two about creating high-quality staples and that's exactly what these shorts are. If you're looking for a style that you can wear day-to-day then here you go.
Ami de Cœur Shorts
Alexandre Mattiusi is an expert in adding small details to minimal designs which makes them irresistible. With these shorts, the designer adds a contrast stripe down the side of each leg.
Highsnobiety Beachfriendz Swim Shorts
As a rule of thumb, you’ll usually find that swimmers are much shorter than your average pair of shorts. If you’ve already committed to the leg-baring inseam, then you might as well follow the whole ultra-loud thing through with a pair of standout red short shorts. These are from the Highsnobiety Beachfriendz capsule — a melting-pot of late-summer wardrobe essentials.
Satisfy Techsilk Shorts
While everything it creates is focused on making running as pleasurable an experience as possible, Satisfy Running's attention to detail means that its sportswear is the type that you want to wear regardless of if you're working out.
Want to keep browsing? Head to the Highsnobiety Shop for more products that we love. Highsnobiety has affiliate marketing partnerships, which means we may receive a commission from your purchase.