Why Wear Specialty Work Pants Instead of Jeans?

Worker in Dickies Pro work pants

You wouldn’t wear your everyday running shoes on the job site and expect them to keep you as safe or as comfortable as your specialty work footwear, so why are you wearing jeans sold for weekend leisure wear on the jobsite? While it’s true that blue jeans were the original work pants, the styles sold today are not designed as work wear. There are a few exceptions, such as the CAT Regulator Jean – which are made of thicker denim, reinforced stitching and are designed to fit over work boots without straining the fabric, but overall jeans are made as leisure or light work wear. Pants designed for work on the other hand, are made of better materials and are more able to withstand the abuse of daily wear on the job site.

What’s the Difference?

At first glance it may be hard to tell the difference between cargo pants made for leisure and ones designed for work – other than the higher price tag on the work pants. That higher price tag is indicative of the extra quality and durability that work-specific pants provide. Work pants are made of thicker material, that is double or triple woven to provide the best durability while still being flexible enough to work in. Most have a double-lined knee area because that is one of the stress points that will fail on non-work specific pants. Zippers on work pants are often stronger and made to last, so the tab on the zipper won’t break off after a few months of use. Work pants also tend to be waterproof or at least water-resistant and if not, are made of material that can be waterproofed as needed. The pockets on work pants are another place where the difference between work wear and leisure wear is apparent. The pockets on work pants are L-shaped and meant to hold things – and are reinforced so that when you clip on a tape measure, it doesn’t rip the pocket. The stitching on work specific pants is another area where you can easily tell the difference, as work pants are double and triple stitched while leisure wear is usually single stitched.

Put simply, work wear is just that – clothes that are designed to be worked in. Yes, it’s more expensive in the short term, but when you consider that a pair of work-specific pants can last up to 5 times longer than a pair of casual pants that cost half the price, it’s actually a wise investment over the long term to get pants that are designed to stand up to the rigors of daily wear.

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