Gusset: What is it and why is it awesome?

What is a gusset? Why do some pants have a Gusset?

Some of our favorite pants have what is called a Gusset, but what does that even mean? First, let’s look at the technical definition of a gusset:

gus·set
‘gəsət/
noun

a piece of material sewn into a garment to strengthen or enlarge a part of it, such as the collar of a shirt or the crotch of an undergarment.

I first learned about a Gusset when trying out the Lululemon ABC Pants. Here’s the Gusset in a pair of Lululemon ABC Pants:

Gusset: What is it and why is it awesome? what-makes-them-abc-pants
The outlined part is a Gusset, the extra area below the crotch area of the pants.

You’re starting to see more and more pants with a Gusset and for good reason. Here are a couple of reasons Gussets are showing up in more and more pants and shorts:

Why a Gusset? Fit

You may have laughed at the to “enlarge a part of it” part of the technical definition. But in reality, it’s what makes (for the most part) the ABC Pant the ABC Pant. It allows for extra room in the crotch area, hence ABC = Anti-Ball Crushing.

It truly does give some extra space “downstairs” – but it works even better when you combine it with a four-way stretching fabric (like the ABC Pants or Duer Jeans). There are just many more ways for the fabric to move with you when you have a gusset. It also avoids awkward seams going in places they shouldn’t.

Why a Gusset? Durability

If you’ve ever ripped a pair of jeans or worn out a pair of khakis/chinos, it’s probably because of a lack of a gusset. Most jeans wear out close to the crotch area and the gusset simply helps avoid the strain typical pants face.

The gusset allows for extra movement in the area where the jeans move the most – near the crotch. The simple seams on most pants just wear out and because of the extra strain on those areas. Not only are pants with gussets usually (not always) more comfortable, they also help extent the life of the pants. Quality still plays an important part. Just because pants have a gusset doesn’t make them automatically more durable, but well-made pants with a gusset will last longer than well-made pants without a gusset.

Can you see a gusset?

Nope! They are really hard to see unless they are taken off…or you are doing a roundhouse kick:

If it’s good enough for Chuck Norris, isn’t it good enough for you?

What brands use gussets?

A couple of the brands/products we love that have a gusset are:

There are many more, but these are all great options. There are even tutorials online about how to ADD a gusset to your favorite pair of pants. I wouldn’t go that far! I would start with our Mega Pants Review and go from there.

Lawrence Hunt (which we hope to try soon!) uses a gusset in the armpit area of their dress shirts.