It’s short season. As the temperature goes up, the inseam goes down. At Janji, we love trying on, testing, and creating the best women’s running shorts. The best way to enjoy a summer of running is to have bottoms that flatter, feel fast, and perform no matter the heat. That’s why we created the list of the best women’s running shorts: so every woman can wear the most flattering running shorts and feel fabulous. Like last year, we’ve comes up with our favorite running shorts for women for the summer and have presented it in list form. Enjoy… and get running!
Ready for a summer of trail running? North Face makes not just great fleeces, but great running wear. And these shorts are no exception: they’re breathable, have a large flattering waistband, and have a fabric made of North Face’ Flashdry technology (i.e it wicks moisture in a flash). The shorts come in several complementary colors, have an internal drawcord, and has a 3.5” inseam; in short, they’re modest, functional, and fashionable.
You know Lululemon makes cute yoga gear. But did you also know they make some phenomenally flattering running shorts? The Hotty Hot Shorts II shorts come in some of the best looking 14 designs out there, are made with Lululemon’s extremely light Swift fabric, and have an internal drawstring if you want to adjust waist sizes. The shorts also have some reflective detail and two pockets: one interior liner pocket to stash your Gu, one zipper pockets to stash your keys. A great recommend if you’re ok with the shorter design.
Ready for the perfect combination between designer level fashion and cutting edge running technology? Look no further than the Stella McCartney-designed, Adidas-produced Run Adizero Short. These ripstop shorts are made of some super light material, have the cutest waistband of maybe any short on this list, and simply look gorgeous on. The shorts have a 2” inseam and are one of the best summer running shorts for ladies from the track to the tennis court.
Full disclosure: we’re biased. We at Janji have spent years designing what we think are the best running shorts for women. And our Pace Booty Shorts in Mangu Mangu Floral is our favorite. Named one of Runner’s World’s best summer gear, this piece has a cute internal waistband inspired by Uganda and a floral print inspired by Ugandan artists. And here’s the best part: 5% of the sale funds clean water projects in Uganda. This cute pair of shorts has a back zipper, is made of super-fast drying material, has a 4” inseam, and even has a reflective logo. If you want to look cute during your next run, check out these race shorts.
We like New Balance as basics for your wardrobe. Their designs might not be flashy and their material might not be super technical, but for $30 they make a fantastic starter shorts. The Accelerate 2.5” shorts from New Balance look good on, is made of a fast-drying 100% polyester, and has a comfortable elastic waistband. It has a pocket on the interior, a reflective logo on the hem, and overall has great movement. But because of its simple design, don’t expect any compliments from any other runners as you wear these.
4. Nike Women’s Tempo Short, $35
These 3” inseam shorts from Nike have been a stalwart of the brand for years. A tad baggy, a tad simple, these shorts come in a variety of colorways that range from the monotonous to the flamboyant. But as many lady runners know, having a tempo short can be an important anchor in your running short collection: they have a modest inseam, are made with Nike’s quick-drying Dri-FIT fabric, and have zippered pockets so you won’t lose your keys. If you pick the color right, you can’t go wrong with having these in your running collection.
In recent years, Under Armour has been making some of the cheapest basics on the market, from shorts to singlets. The Fly-By Shorts are no different. These relaxed fit shorts are everything you’d want in a simple pair of shorts: it’s lightweight, has a comfortable 3” inseam, and is made with a fast-drying polyester. But best of all, this short actually has side pockets, so you can take it from the gym, to the run, to the brunch—all while carrying your stuff. Cute, functional, and cheap… it’s definitely one of the best inexpensive running shorts for women.
2. Brooks Women’s Chaser 3” Shorts, $46
Want one of the best women’s running shorts to prevent chafing? Look no further. Brooks has been making their chaser shorts for some time now. They’re semi-fitted (so not too tight or too relaxed) with a lightweight, comfortable construction. The shorts have interior storage pockets within the wide waistband, which does a magnificent job of preventing chafing regardless of the conditions. While the designs are “meh” (they come in several monochromatic colors and a so-so teal pattern) the shorts work great and are a wonderful, every day short.
1. Oiselle Women’s Roga Shorts, $48
According to company legend, the Roga shorts are what placed the women’s-only Oiselle on the map. That’s because these shorts are, in many ways, the perfect basic: not too tight or too poofy; comfortable and cute; and it really does do what a short should do: it makes you not think about your shorts! As foundational shorts go, these are the best running shorts for half marathons, 5ks, ultra-marathons, or just any loop around the house. Made of a 74% polyester/26% spandex material, it has a wide waistband, an interior draw cord, a rear zipper, and a 4” inseam. You can wear these everywhere and feel comfortable the entire time.