I am looking for some summer dressy-casual pants. I own a pair of gray garbardine wool pants from Brooks Brothers and I have cotton khaki pants from Express. I was thinking of getting a pair of gray summer pants. Should I be looking into cotton pants for the summer? Wool seems to be reserved more for cooler weather. 

Any suggestions on brands? I know Express has a bad reputation but I think their cotton pants are alright. Should I look into lightweight summer wool pants or will cotton be good enough? I live in Chicago and the summer heat/humidity can get out of hand.

PS: I am 25 years old and would like to wear something with a more modern look too.

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Brooks Bros is my go to a lot for dress pants.  

Lighter weight wool shouldn't be too bad in the summer (it might be also called tropical).  You could always go with linen but they tend to wrinkle easy.

Stafford line is a good one.

One of the few things I still buy at the Gap are their khakis.  They have what they refer to as "tailored khakis" that are 100% cotton.  I usually go with the straight fit/flat front but they also offer relaxed and slim fits.  They look good with pretty much any shirt, tucked or untucked, can go with a jacket, and they wash up well.  I've had a couple pairs for more than two years and not had to iron them once...which is probably the biggest reason I keep buying them.

The pants Matt mentioned(The tailored khaki (slim fit)) look great, they don't come in many colors though. I'm also interested in better pants, but unfortunately I like to wear a lot of black shirts. So I need more colors... Or at least a grey. 

Any other brands to consider?

Might want to look into J Crew. They have a more modern look and the things I have owned in the past held up. Stussy is also a good brand. Some of their pants are a 70% cotton 30% poly which I have always found comfortable even in Texas summer. 

Not sure of a brand but if you can find some linen pants you will be golden. That will keep you cooler than just about any fabric. 

Look into linen, much cooler than even cotton khakis; although very difficult to iron.

I love linen for the first 5 minutes I'm wearing it, then I just watch with horror as it continues to crease and crease and crease!

I know the secret of wearing linen is to "embrace the creases", but it horrifies me each and every time...I only wear it in the garden nowadays, I hate going public in it!

I'm also in the Chicago area. Anything linen or light weight cotton works for summer as "dressy-casual". Generally speaking, summer colors are lighter and/or brighter but it's not critical if that's not your style.

Linen.  Most of the Brooks Brothers stuff should be on sale now, too.

I had heard alot about www.billskhakis.com so I bought some and wear them at work.  I live in SC and it get's silly hot and humid.  Comfortable, nice cut and well made.  Something about they're based upon the styles of the 30's and 40's.  My wife likes them, somewhat pricey, but if you catch them on sale they aren't too bad.

I light weight trousers, twill, and cotton slacks and pants all year round.  I prefer them to denim because they are light and comfy.  I have a few different pairs.  Good places to go are gap, H&M, dockers, Im sure there are several other places.  Just make sure they fit well.

MensWearhouse used to be my go to for tropical weight wool.

Take a look at the LandsEnd section at Sears.

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