what color pants to wear with a brown shirt?

What color pants go well with a brown shirt?

Brown is definitely a tricky color, if worn right can make you look great but if you pair it with the wrong colors it can easily ruin your outfit.

Brown pants are pretty easy to pair, brown shirts on the other hand can be a pain to pair. and that is why most men struggle to find the right pants to wear with their brown shirts.

But guess what? You no longer need to feel so or be unsure about how to style it. I am going to help you with colors that go well with brown and will also tell you how to style them.

But before that let us understand the color first. Brown is a mixture of colors; usually made by blending red and green pigments in precise amounts or by mixing black with orange. And while brown might be the least popular color in public opinion, I am going to try my best to make it a staple for your wardrobe. 

So let us get started by understanding the colors that go well with a brown shirt.

Black 

Yes of course black; without a doubt, it should be one of the staple colors when it comes to pants in your wardrobe.

And brown might come in different hues but I would suggest you go with a regular shade of black over a faded or jet black hue to pair with brown. This is really important to keep in mind because brown itself is a dark color so it is best to stick to the basic yet dark shade. 

White 

The color white usually is symbolic of peace and is seen to be a calm color. And that is exactly what it will do when paired with a brown shirt. This calm color will balance the high contrast dark heaviness that is portrayed by the color brown. And just like brown, white has shades and it is okay to use dull as well as bright shades. Use a bright white bottom for a formal look and you may use an off-white bottom for a more rustic style. 

Olive Drab

Now unlike olive green; olive drab is somewhat greenish-brown or you may also refer to be a dull version of the regular olive gree. And since there is a difference in the shade, this leaves room for us to use it due to the brown hue present in it. It actually goes with other shades of green, blue, and brown as nature would depict with the help of a tree. 

Beige 

Beige might be a neutral color, however, let us not forget that it is the color of dry sand or even natural wood. This happens to be a popular color among formal wear over casual. And being quite a shade of brown it is safe to say that it complements other shades of brown especially dark ones just as you would see in a log of wood that has a light interior with a dark exterior.

Brown 

I mean why not? However, please don’t try on a brown suit. You surely don’t want to pair the same shade of brown overall. This is why you need an understanding of the color scheme and we will cover our bases so that you know which shade to pair with which other shade of brown.

outfits

I understand the list was small and there are definitely some other colors that could work with a brown shirt in certain situations.

But the colors that we have mentioned above are the safe colors that would work every single time for every one of you.

Now, Let’s see a few outfit ideas that you can use as inspiration

Style 1: Hickory Brown shirt with a pair of Beige Chinos

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Let’s start simple and pair a hickory brown shirt with a pair of beige chinos for a clean formal look. Complement them by paying them with a pair of brown loafers. And this style might look basic but that is what we are trying to create. A basic look that is different in itself. Accessorize if you feel like there is a need to do so, however, I would suggest keeping it as simple as possible. Such as adding an analog watch with a tan strap.   

Style 2: Mud Brown shirt with a pair of Saddle Brown Chinos 

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Pair a mud brown shirt with a pair of saddle brown chinos. Now you may feel like that is a whole lof of brown due to the shades being not much distant. However, that is where I will help you; the trick is to balance the look with a solid white t-shirt underneath that brown shirt. You don’t need necessarily need to button up your shirt, you may wear it in an open fashion for a casual look. And yes complete the look with a pair of white sneakers. 

Style 3: Mud Brown shirt with a pair of White Jeans

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Now it’s time to work with that one color that pretty much goes with every other color; of course, I am talking about the color white. Start by pairing your mud brown shirt with your white jeans. These solid colors look great together when the right shade of brown is used. And for footwear add on a pair of brown shoes. Now, this can be a formal as well as casual look depending on how you wish to carry it, so feel the occasion and go for it. 

Style 4: Dark Brown shirt with a pair of Black Jeans

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Black happens to be my go-to color, and why shouldn’t it be? When in doubt it is safe to bet on black to go with other colors whether it is to complement each other or contrast. So pair a solid  mud brown shirt with a pair of black jeans. Try out a pair of high ankle black lace-up boots for a change but keep things on the minimalistic side. Add on an analog watch with a black strap and that shall do it for you.

Style 5: Light Brown shirt with a pair of dark brown jeans

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Now that we have covered the basic colors that go well with brown it is time we used the color itself to our strength; that is color play. Wear a light brown shirt and pair it with dark brown jeans. You may either complete the look with a pair of fringed top loafers or a pair of boots in tan. Brown is not the easiest to style so you shall continue with the minimalistic trend and at the most add on an analog watch with a brown strap.  

Style 6: Light Brown shirt with a pair of olive drab trousers

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Another cool color play can be created with the help of the olive drab hue. You can use the same light brown shirt as before. All you need to do is change into a pair of olive drab trousers. Leave the rim of the shirt to hang loose for a breezy look. Finish off the look with the help of dark brown and white oxfords for a little drama. You may also add on a pair of round frame clear glasses to create a unique yet minimalistic look. 

We may have come to the end but here is what I need you to remember. Brown might seem like a hue that is hard to style but it has a lot of potentials if you know how to use the shades of brown to your advantage. One thing that might help you is a shade card; opposite hues would go great but don’t be afraid to try out hues that are in close proximity. Just remember to fill in a little balance with the help of some neutral color. 


picture of author dylan baker smiling

About the author

Dylan is a Men's fashion and image consultant, He is also the man behind Dapperclan. He is extremely passionate about fashion and wants to help men style and look better.