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4 Best Womens Hiking Shorts for Plus Size Ladies [2023]

Womens Hiking Shorts for Plus size – Plus size clothing, sucks, a lot. They are either completely unfashionable or completely unflattering.

Or, the manufacturer believes that just piling the material up will make it plus size, newsflash! It doesn’t.

I know, shopping for everyday plus size is a nightmare, shopping for plus size activewear is even worse! As a plus-size woman myself, shorts are the worst.

I want them longer than normal shorts to prevent my thighs from chaffing. But I don’t want them down past my knees because 1) it is too much fabric. 2) it just doesn’t look cute.

But what qualifies as plus size? Most outdoor brands only go up to a size 12. Which isn’t ideal. Within the last decade or so, sizes 14 and 16 are becoming more available.

But honestly, this still isn’t good enough. This is still a challenge to find any sizes above a size 16.

For women who are a size 18 and above, is it rather difficult, companies are now recognizing this gap in the market. Nearly 70% of American women are a size 14, which is considered plus size.

Due to a massive social media movement, the stigma of being plus size is slowly but surely disappearing.

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PrAna’s Electa Shorts

womens hiking shorts for plus size prana electa shorts

The brand PrAna has really been focusing on upping its womens hiking shorts for plus size range over the past couple of years. Focusing on yoga, casual wear and of course hiking.

The Electa leggings are a fan favourite due to their ultralight fit and feel. So naturally, they had to make a short version.

These shorts are in the usual biker short fashion, but these shorts are so much more. With additional details like UPF 50+ protection, an extra-wide waistband for coverage and support.

There is a Coolmax Gusser for extra comfort as you hike. There is also a hidden key pocket within the waistband and pockets conveniently on the side.

PrAna also uses recycled nylon blend to make the shorts, due to this fabric these shorts are able to stretch well, they also have a four-way stretch.

The shorts have a high rise fit, a feature that is desirable in plus size clothes. These shorts also contain a moisture-wicking element which helps with keeping these dry.

These are the longer ones out of the selection, I selected this one due to plus size ladies having issues with chaffing.

However, their selections in size still aren’t as inclusive as we would like them to be, the company’s only downfall really.

The company is great for pants, tops, and bras, but they are really let down by their short selection.

Patagonia’s Quandary Shorts

womens hiking shorts for plus size patagonia quandary shorts

After years of offering only small sizes, they have recently launched a plus-size selection. Which I am super stoked about! The Quandary shorts are super recommended, especially on Instagram.

These shorts come in two different lengths, five and seven inches.

They also come in three colours, tan, stone, and khaki. These shorts are incredibly lightweight, that is made up of stretch weaved and nylon with a spandex filling at the top of the shorts.

There is a DWR (durable water-repellent) finish, which will help during those wetter hikes.

Eighty-seven per cent of the materials are from a recycled source, they use recycled nylon which is made up of postindustrial waste fibre from old fishing nets and weaving nets.

The DWR is fluorinated material, which will help keep you dry. The size range is 0-18, which isn’t the best but is still considered plus size.

Columbia’s PFG Tidal II Shorts

womens hiking shorts for plus size  colombia pfg tidal shorts

Columbia had impressed me, their size range is without a doubt the best on this list. With an even greater selection of items.

These shorts are advertised as board shorts and wind shorts combined. These shorts are considered stretchy with s partial elastic waist to keep you comfortable.

This level of versatility is created by the Omni-Shield advanced repellence to help adapt to a wetter climate. There is also a built-in UPF 50 sun protection, which is great for longer hikes.

There is a drawcord-adjustable waist, so it can be adjustable to your size. These shorts also contains zippered hand pockets, great for protecting your phone on steeper hikes.

With a whopping eleven different colours, some of which are on sale right now. The shorts are made up of 91& polyester and 9% elastane, which is giving you your desired fit.

Honestly, I cannot find a reasonable fault with these shorts, Columbia had a separate size range for plus size, which I find better in clothing brands.

REI’S Zoic Navaeh Bliss Bike Shorts

womens hiking shorts for plus size navaeh bliss bike shorts

In 2017 REI began to offer more sizes to target a plus-size demographic. This is another brand that has an impressive range in clothing and sizes.

This company also goes up to a 3XL, REI also sells a collection of other brands like the ones I have mentioned above. I found the website a little messy and hard to navigate.

There wasn’t a set section for plus size clothing, so I was unsure where the plus size clothing was.

But back to these shorts, picture this, your favourite pair of yoga pants meet your favourite mountain bike shorts. That is these shorts.

The super stretch that the yoga pants alongside the 3-inch wide waistband will provide comfort without stopping your range of motion.

The fabric – VersaLight is offering UPF 50+ sun protection for those long hikes.

There is also zippered hand and thigh pockets which is great for storage! These are also longer and fall at the knee, which will prevent chaffing!

Conclusion on Womens Hiking Shorts for Plus Size

Overall, finding plus sided hiking shorts can be difficult, especially if you are above a size 18.

Most brands are branching out into expanding their range, but I strongly recommend these brands I have listed due to the fact that they are centred around hiking clothes and therefore going to last and offer protection.

Top 4 Best Womens Hiking Shorts for Plus Size Ladies [2022]