how to fold shorts

How to Fold Shorts: An Easy-to-Use Guide 

Keeping your clothes organized may seem easy: you just put things away when they’re clean, right? Unfortunately for our time and patience, a neat wardrobe involves much more effort than that. Different clothes in our wardrobe need different approaches to folding so they can look good and stay as wrinkle-free as possible.

You should also apply this logic when you’re folding shorts. They take up relatively little space and are fairly symmetrical, thus, less complicated than items like button-down shirts. However, you should still determine the best way to fold shorts by their style and material. Are you confused yet? We’ve put together an easy, comprehensive guide on how to fold shorts.


How to Fold Casual Shorts

Casual shorts come in all shapes and sizes. From long lounge shorts to trendy cargo and retro styles, folding shorts to save space means you have to make considerations for each style. Simple shorts, like trousers, are pretty straightforward. It is the bulky kind that requires a special technique. Below, we’ve broken down the steps for folding even the trickiest materials.


How to fold jean shorts:

  1. Smooth out the pockets by inserting your hands into each pocket hole.
  2. Hold the shorts upright and shake them out before laying them down on your folding surface.
  3. Fold one leg over the other, making sure to line up the short’s legs so that the seams remain on the outside. This helps to prevent wrinkles.
  4. Fold the shorts in half or more, depending on space.

Note: Because jeans can be bulky, it’s better to leave out the crotch rather than tuck it into the sides before folding.


For heavier shorts like men's cargo shorts:

  1. Button the waistband
  2. Smooth out the pockets.
  3. Fold the shorts vertically in thirds: One third towards the center, the same for a third of the other leg to create an overlap.
  4. Fold them once horizontally.

How to Fold Athletic Shorts

Athletic shorts come in different materials— polyester, nylon, and other fabrics which are often flimsy and sometimes bulky. Depending on the pair, it can be hard to get them to sit the way you would like. The best way to fold basketball shorts may differ from running shorts due to size, but the technique is generally the same.


  1. If your shorts have an elastic waist or are bunched up by the drawstring, undo the string and flatten it out as much as possible. Tie the drawstring in a loose knot so you don’t lose it in the depths of the waistband.
  2. Align your shorts on one leg and tuck in the crotch area.
  3. Take the bottom of the legs and fold them to just below the waistband.
  4. Fold them once again, this time lining the bottom end up with the waistband. 

How to Fold Dressy Shorts

When looking at how to fold shorts of this kind, the aim should be to reduce creasing as much as possible.

  1. Button the waistband.
  2. Shake the shorts out before placing them down.
  3. Lay them out flat, with the front side facing up.
  4. Fold one leg over the over, making sure to line up the short’s legs so that seams remain on the outside.
  5. If the seat or crotch area sticks out, fold it over the legs of the shorts. Tucking it in will lead to bunching and extra wrinkling.
  6. Fold the shorts in half lengthwise. If they are short, one fold is enough. But you can fold longer shorts into thirds.


How to Fold Shorts for Travel

When you're traveling, the less space your clothes take up, the better. This is why people love the rolling method of folding for a travel bag. This method works especially well for shorts.

  1. Lay out the shorts after shaking them out to smoothen.
  2. Roll them out from the waistband to the leg opening, making sure to avoid bunching and wrinkles by smoothing them out as you go.


Folding Tips

As we mentioned before, how to fold shorts to save space depends a lot on the size and style of the pair. Apart from using the appropriate technique, you can take some steps to ensure a neat fold.

  1. While you may want to get a perfect rectangle by tucking in the part that protrudes from the seat, be mindful of the material and creasing. Thick materials can lead to extra bulk, which takes up more space in the closet, while other materials will end up with an ugly crease.
  2. Always smooth out your shorts before folding them.
  3. Shaking out your shorts helps to make the process easier.
  4. Always make sure to close buttons, whether at the crotch or pockets, before folding.


How to Create the Most Space Folding

The standard practice of stacking clothes in your wardrobe is one of the least optimized for storage space. This is where the popular “Konmari Method” comes into play. Popularized by Japanese organizing consultant Marie Kondo, this method is a simple space optimization technique that vertically arranges your clothes in a file, as opposed to stacking them on top of one other. You’ll also make it easier to take your shorts out without distorting the rest of the arrangement.

If you choose to stack your folded shorts, place them with the waistbands facing opposite directions to offset some of the bulk.


Fold Away with Unionbay

Don’t have enough shorts in your wardrobe? Unionbay’s wide collection of shorts for men and shorts for women is sure to change that. Browse our catalog of trendy yet affordable styles today. And top your outfit off by browsing a wide selection of tops for men!