10 Best Men’s Running Shorts: Lightweight & Comfortable

Daniel Bishop
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There are many different features to look for in a good pair of running shorts, such as built-in shorts, shorts that are elastic-free, shorts with zippered pockets, and shorts that are spandex/polyester blends.

This is my guide to the 10 best men’s running shorts. I’ll share the qualities of my favorite men’s running short brands, as well as some of my favorite pairs.

NameCategoryProduct
New Balance Men's Accelerate Running ShortBest OverallNew Balance Men's Accelerate Running Short
Soffe Men's Authentic Ranger PantyBudget PickSoffe Men's Authentic Ranger Panty
Under Armour Men's Speedpocket 8'' Linerless ShortsUpgrade PickUnder Armour Men's Speedpocket 8'' Linerless Shorts

1. New Balance Men's Accelerate Running Short

Our rating: 9 / 10

New Balance Men's Accelerate Running Short

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Pros:

  • They have a super-stretchy four-way, seamless construction that allows for great movement, comfort, and breathability.
  • They are a perfect fit for the summer and will not disappoint.
  • It is consistent with the New Balance brand in terms of quality and pricing.
  • Their length is perfect, neither too long nor too short to expose the thighs.
  • The only thing we didn't like about this model was the fact that the material is thick.
  • A taker runner will find it warm.

The new balance Men's Accelerate Running Short is available in multiple sizes ranging from medium to 3XL. The sizes range from 30 inch to 41 inch which is ideal for different body sizes. These shorts also feature an adjustable drawstring and an interior mesh brief. These shorts support a cause that is close to the heart of most runners, breast cancer research. These shorts weigh about 9 ounces which means you will barely feel them when running. They are built to last because they feature a premium polyester material and four-way stretch.

2. Under Armour Men's HeatGear Armour 2.0 9-inch Compression Shorts

Our rating: 8 / 10

Under Armour Men's HeatGear Armour 2.0 9-inch Compression Shorts

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Pros:

  • You can purchase them in a variety of sizes for a better fit
  • The anti-odor technology and the anti-microbial finish mean that they are more resistant to stains and odors
  • It is very durable and made from high-quality materials
  • The fit is very comfortable and soft
  • Buying multiple pairs of these for men’s running shorts will allow you to wear them everyday and cost you less than buying another brand
  • They are affordable and the price is competitive to similar products on the market

Cons:

  • The seam on the socks can be slightly irritating
  • The size is slightly off for the 22/32 pants; they run a bit small as compared to other products from Under Armour

3. BALEAF Men's 7'' Athletic Running Shorts Quick Dry Mesh Liner Back Zip Pocket

Our rating: 8 / 10

BALEAF Men's 7'' Athletic Running Shorts Quick Dry Mesh Liner Back Zip Pocket

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Pros:

  • Fantastic value for money
  • Breathable
  • Quality material
  • Stretchy and comfortable fit
  • Quick drying
  • Machine washable
  • Good length
  • Perfect for running, gym, and fitness

Cons:

  • Runs slightly large
  • Pocket is a little tight to put things inside
  • Material is thinner than expected

Overall, Baleaf has done a great job in delivering this great pair of shorts at a bargain. It is one of the few fitness shorts that will give you long-lasting performance and comfort without blowing your budget.

Both the length and the elasticity are good, so the shorts can fit you tightly. The breathability of the mesh liner will help to regulate your body temperature when you’re in the gym or running in the hot sun. Besides, the touch and feel of these shorts are comparable to the premium brands.

The pockets are fairly tight, so you cannot put a lot of objects. But the length of the pockets is great, so you can put something smaller and lighter like your keys.

4. LUWELL PRO Men's 3 Pack Compression Shorts Baselayer Cool Dry Sports Tights Shorts

Our rating: 8 / 10

LUWELL PRO Men's 3 Pack Compression Shorts Baselayer Cool Dry Sports Tights Shorts

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Pros:

  • Breathable mesh fabric
  • Perfect for yoga, Pilates, running
  • Stretchy material and will not lose shape even after a couple of years
  • Longer length, which prevents the shorts from slipping
  • Unisex design which can be worn by both women and men
  • Very affordable price
  • Unlike other sports shorts which uses cheap material, this product does not have any useless decoration or logos on it
  • These shorts are made to work with your body and either be worn on the top to keep the body cool or on the bottom to keep it warm
  • They are made from comfortable and stretchy material which does not chafe

Pilates.

The LUWELL Compression Shorts are made with excellent high-quality materials. It features a durable material which keeps its original shape during the whole exercise.

The mesh fabric is loose and breathable which is great for summer wear. It is also lightweight and very comfy to wear. The material also has good stretch for use in many types of exercises and sports.

5. ASICS Men's Woven 7" Short

Our rating: 7 / 10

ASICS Men's Woven 7" Short

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Pros:

  • Lightweight and durable
  • Nice color scheme – four different colors to choose from
  • Very comfortable
  • Good range of sizes from M to XXL
  • Breathable mesh side panels
  • Mesh liner that is soft against the skin

Cons:

  • Shorts are not machine washable
  • Drawstring waist is a bit thin

The ASICS Men Watanabe 7" Shorts is a comfortable athletic shorts made with a woven fabric that’s very light and breathable. It features a medley of colors to choose from and is available in numerous sizes ranging from small to extra large.

The shorts are sold in a single pack, but they come in a variety of colors. These include Kusa Green, Black/White, Black/Red, and White/Blue. In addition, they are made from polyester and feature a mesh lining on the side panels that is soft against the skin.

This is a running and training short so it’s made with a lightweight woven fabric so it doesn’t add weight to your body. It also allows you to move freely and breath well.

6. New Balance Men's Accelerate Running Short

Our rating: 7 / 10

New Balance Men's Accelerate Running Short

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Pros:

  • They have a super-stretchy four-way, seamless construction that allows for great movement, comfort, and breathability.
  • They are a perfect fit for the summer and will not disappoint.
  • It is consistent with the New Balance brand in terms of quality and pricing.
  • Their length is perfect, neither too long nor too short to expose the thighs.
  • The only thing we didn't like about this model was the fact that the material is thick.
  • A taker runner will find it warm.

The new balance Men's Accelerate Running Short is available in multiple sizes ranging from medium to 3XL. The sizes range from 30 inch to 41 inch which is ideal for different body sizes. These shorts also feature an adjustable drawstring and an interior mesh brief. These shorts support a cause that is close to the heart of most runners, breast cancer research. These shorts weigh about 9 ounces which means you will barely feel them when running. They are built to last because they feature a premium polyester material and four-way stretch.

7. TCA Men's Ultra 2 in 1 Running Shorts

Our rating: 7 / 10

TCA Men's Ultra 2 in 1 Running Shorts

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Pros:

  • Full flexibility and movement, no matter the weather
  • Great for those steamy summer days and cool winter mornings
  • Has a long zipped pocket to store your belongings
  • Made using ultra-lightweight and breathable fabric
  • The shorts are made 100% polyester to provide a long-lasting wear
  • Includes a SPIrate moisture-wicking technology to keep you dry and fresh
  • Great quality for the price

Cons:

  • Since the shorts are made of polyester it is important that you hand-wash them
  • Many users have reported experiencing seam-ripping issues

Trina Turk’s TCM men’s athletic ultra-lightweight 2 in 1 running shorts is a product of America’s tradition of high-quality products.

This pair of TCM shorts features an elastic waistband and 2.5 inch inseams to ensure you have maximum freedom of movement. The shorts also feature an inner compression short to enable you to keep up with your workout and avoid tension and friction while running.

Undoubtedly, the TCM running shorts are a prime choice if you are hitting the gym or prefer to go for long runs during the weekends. These pants were designed to provide you with both comfort and protection during your workouts, and they certainly live up to that expectation.

8. Soffe Men's Authentic Ranger Panty

Our rating: 6 / 10

Soffe Men's Authentic Ranger Panty

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Pros:

  • The fabric is lightweight and comfortable for warm weather conditions
  • A wide range of color choices
  • Manufactured in the USA

Cons:

  • Although tagless, they can be a bit tight when they’re brand new
  • Inaccurate sizing
  • Fabric can pill if you’re not careful with them

The Soffe Men’s Authentic Ranger Panties are a nice alternative to cotton men’s running shorts due to their low-rise design and comfort.

At first glance they may seem like regular cotton boxers, but they are more ideal for running due to their light, breathable fabric.

The material is also very durable, so they are highly versatile. You can wear them as light training or lounging underwear. The sizing of these running shorts is a bit inconsistent though.

9. Under Armour Men's Speedpocket 8'' Linerless Shorts

Our rating: 6 / 10

Under Armour Men's Speedpocket 8'' Linerless Shorts

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The Under Armour Men’s Speedpocket 8” Linerless Shorts are compression shorts that are perfect for any athlete. They’re lightweight and breathable, made with anti-odor technology to wick away moisture to keep you feeling dry and comfortable. They have both side and back pockets to store small items and a secure zipper pocket for more important ones.

How Important Is The Material?

You need to find out why the manufacturer chose that particular material for their shorts. Is it to reduce sweating? Or other reasons such as durability, comfort, etc…

10. Salomon Trail Runner Twinskin Short M

Our rating: 4 / 10

Salomon Trail Runner Twinskin Short M

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Pros:

  • It is fitted, yet lightweight, which makes it ideal for all activities including running, trail running, cycling, traveling, and hiking.
  • It is a one of a kind combination of lightness, stretch and versatility.
  • The material is great, it is stretch and ventilation
  • It has moisture wicking properties which are great
  • It is a very lightweight material and dries very quickly
  • It has a unique chimney ventilation system allowing air to flow at the back of the legs, preventing heat buildup.
  • This short is also made from 100% recycled polyester
  • It has a comfortable chafe-free inner brief.

Cons:

  • The pocket is a bit small
  • The material is separated from the inner brief which can be a bit annoying
  • The webbing belt allow you to adjust the waist size a bit
  • It is expensive
  • May not be quite durable

Is Men’s 8.0 Inch Shorts – Black

The Salomon Trail Runner Twinskin short is a technical running, training and trail running short. It is a comfortable light-weight running short with exceptional breathability and moisture management. It is a running short made from a seamless fabric which breathes effortlessly.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What shorts to wear for running?

There is no one answer to this question. It depends on preference as well as climate. However, there are some things to consider:

Fit: Look for shorts that fit you well. They should be tight enough to stay in place during your run but not so tight that they make you uncomfortable.

Material: Here’s the deal: synthetics, like polyester, are extremely comfortable. They keep you cool, breathable, and provide moisture management. However, synthetics are slippery, which is not a problem for casual running but can prove disastrous for those of you who are running on packed sand.

No matter the material, make sure that the shorts are long enough that you don’t have to worry about exposing anything when you bend over. Also, consider the climate in which you will be running. For hot summer days, shorts made of breathable mesh make the most sense.

What are 3 inch running shorts?

3 inch running shorts are the shortest running shorts you can find. They basically cover only from the lower part of your torso down to the upper part of your thighs. These are best worn during running on a hot summer day, but otherwise they are not fit for cold weather. As a result, most 3 inch running shorts are made of a light fabric or with mesh pockets for ventilation.

Why do men's running shorts have liners?

Usually, specialized shorts such as compression shorts or running shorts have a liner that helps wick away sweat leaving your skin feeling dry and comfortable. Some liners are made of a fabric such as cambric that absorbs moisture, some are made of a fiber such as polyester that wicks away sweat, and some have a combination of design features. The design you choose all depends on what you prefer. In colder weather, a liner makes good sense and is a necessity, but in hot weather, going without a liner might make more sense. It all depends on how much you sweat, whether it’s hot or cold outside, and how much you feel you need to reduce chaffing. The good news is that you can always add an extra layer such as a pair of running shorts or compression shorts in the winter and a liner can create an extra layer.

Are Running Shorts supposed to be tight?

Running shorts are designed to be form-fitting but not tight. By purchasing shorts that are too tight, you’ll cut off circulation and irritate your delicate skin.

Another common mistake is buying running shorts that are too loose. To many runners, baggy running shorts may seem comfortable, but they actually inhibit moisture management. This makes it harder for your body to cool down and drying out your shorts is impossible.

Conclusion

If you’re a marathon runner, a runner for exercise only, or a runner-wanna-be, you have to appreciate the value of a good pair of running shorts. Running shorts that keep you cool during a hot workout, dry during a rainy one, and prevent blisters should be a part of every runner’s wardrobe. This is our list of the best men’s running shorts.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
New Balance Men's Accelerate Running ShortBest OverallNew Balance Men's Accelerate Running Short
Soffe Men's Authentic Ranger PantyBudget PickSoffe Men's Authentic Ranger Panty
Under Armour Men's Speedpocket 8'' Linerless ShortsUpgrade PickUnder Armour Men's Speedpocket 8'' Linerless Shorts