This article was produced in partnership with Fjällräven.
When it comes to technical pants for women, the offerings are overwhelmingly disappointing. Fit varies widely from style to style—the waist could be too big while the thighs are too tight—and pockets? They’re often an afterthought, if they’re included at all. But Fjällräven trousers are anything but typical: The Swedish outfitter gets women’s trousers right. The company does it by not only offering different cuts and a plethora of pockets, but also by utilizing sustainably sourced materials and designs that can handle the long haul.
The brand has a lineup of several female-specific trousers, like the Keb Trousers and Nikka Trousers, as well as lightweight options like the Abisko Trekking Tights. Each of the trousers comes in a regular or curved silhouette to match a variety of body types, and to really dial in the fit, you can have your pair tailored at any Fjällräven store. Once you’ve found your pair, they’ll quickly become a go-to choice for any outdoor activity—just ask the women who wear them.
Kieren Britton appreciates how Fjällräven’s trousers are designed for women’s bodies and engineered for high-powered activities. As the founder and CEO of The Lady Alliance, Britton leads hiking retreats, yoga trips, avalanche safety courses, and wilderness excursions for women and allies. She’s based in Victoria, BC, and spends her summers trekking the North Island’s coastline in search of remote surfing spots. Tackling those forested coastal trails demands proper leg protection.
That’s when she reaches for her Keb Trousers. Made from Fjällräven’s G-1000 Eco fabric, a blend of 65 percent recycled polyester and 35 percent organic cotton, they’re pliable and breathable yet exceptionally sturdy, so they can stand up to bumps and scrapes on the trail. (The trekking-focused Nikka Trousers are another capable choice for long hikes and backcountry trips.) Britton also likes that the trousers are thick and durable in high-friction areas, like the thighs and lower legs, but flexible behind the knees, which allows for good freedom of movement.
“In the places that they’re meant to move, they’re soft, they’re flexible, and they work with my body,” she tells Men’s Journal.
Her Kebs are also versatile enough to wear all year long: In winter, Britton wears them while ski touring around the hills near Vancouver. When temps really plummet, she wears them over a base layer and under a pant shell for added warmth and protection (the Abisko Trekking Tights, with their lightweight, form-fitting design, also make a great pick for layering under technical ski pants). If wet conditions are in the forecast, she’ll add a coat of Greenland Wax on the exterior of her trousers to repel moisture and stay dry. No matter what the weather’s doing, Kebs can handle it.
Four pockets (two drop hand pockets and two on the thighs with snap closures) are roomy enough to fit a smartphone, map, ID cards, and even a pair of gloves. And like all of Fjällräven’s products, Kebs are made with a commitment to sustainability. They’re built with recycled, organic materials and free of fluorocarbons. Fjällräven’s strict standards for materials and manufacturing ensure every garment is built to withstand the test of time and that they’re good for the Earth, too. For Britton, both aspects are essential.
“Whenever I think about purchasing anything, I think about voting with my dollar,” she says. “Our values are aligned. They are very focused on environmental initiatives and sustainability, and they put their money into community initiatives.”
Those high standards (and adventurous spirit) run in her family: Many of Britton’s male relatives are longtime wearers of Fjällräven trousers, and her dad has owned a pair for as long as she can remember.
While Fjällräven’s trousers are created with men’s and women’s bodies in mind, wearers can always mix and match to find the perfect fit. Deirdre Buryk, a Toronto-based recipe developer, food writer, and nutritionist, actually prefers the Men’s Keb Trousers for their straighter silhouette, which is a better match for her narrow hips. Although the fit might be different, the men’s Kebs are made with the same long-lasting, Earth-friendly materials as the women’s version.
Buryk is currently working on a book called Peak Season, which highlights fresh ingredients in Ontario that chefs can use in their cooking. Part of Buryk’s product research involves visiting gardens and getting up close and personal with the dirt. Her Kebs have been a trusty companion when she’s out in the field or tending to her own garden, and she loves their resistance to stains.
“I get very messy with a lot of soil everywhere, but the trousers never really stay dirty,” she says.
She also likes wearing them around the city and even to Afro and Jazz Punk dance classes, where she’ll layer them over other trousers to show off their streamlined look and take advantage of their durability. In the past, some pairs of pants have ripped while she’s working on routines in class, but the Kebs have stayed intact through squatting, sliding, and all kinds of other movements.
“The trousers are so flexible I never feel restricted,” she says.
Think wearing women’s trousers means compromising on fit or performance? You haven’t tried Fjällräven’s yet.
Keb Trousers Curved: $225; fjallraven.comGet it
Nikka Trousers Curved, $180; fjallraven.comGet it
Abisko Trekking Tights: $175; fjallraven.comGet it
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