There once was a time when only boys wore “short pants,” and a first pair of long pants was a rite of passage into manhood. Those days are gone, but that doesn’t mean that wearing shorts means dressing like a boy. There are a number of ways to wear shorts with style and sophistication.

Wear a Long-Sleeve Shirt

One of the easiest ways to give your shorts a classy update is to pair them with a long-sleeve shirt. Try a soft oxford with a button down collar, but avoid shirts that are too dressy. Wear the shirt tucked in and the cuffs buttoned for a more polished look, or roll up your sleeves and wear the shirt untucked for a more laid-back feel.

Wear a Collar

Sometimes a collar is all it takes to look put together. Opting for a polo shirt in a solid color or simple stripe pattern provides the comfort you want on a hot day but looks more refined than a simple T-shirt. Wear it tucked in with the collar down for a traditional look, or pop the collar and wear it untucked for a preppy vibe.

Wear a Tie

Wearing shorts with a tie isn’t something to do every day, but for a summer garden party or poolside cocktails it can be a fun alternative to your usual getup. Stick with simple color combinations and opt for a bow tie for an even more festive look. A sports jacket in navy or seersucker can work with this, too, but may not always be appropriate. Take your cues from the situation. Finish the look with warm sunshine and a gin and tonic.

Wear a T-Shirt (of course)

Shorts and a T-shirts are a match made in heaven, but it’s a combination that can look lazy and childish if you don’t think it through. The trick is to keep things clean and simple. Opt for a simple T-shirt in a solid color or stripes — avoid shirts with band names, sports logos or ironic expressions plastered all over them. Pair with crisp shorts cut above the knee and simple footwear. Remember, wearing a T-shirt doesn’t mean you have to look like you just left the frat house.

Style Tips

Wearing shorts is really all about beating the heat. Here are a few easy tips to stay stylish in shorts:

-Get the right cut: For a more sophisticated look, stick with crisply styled shorts cut just above the knee. Avoid baggy styles with too many pockets.

-Choose the right footwear: Leave the trainers and flip flops at home. Opt instead for a more grown-up shoe. Penny loafers, boat shoes, driving moccasins or classic sneakers like Converse All Stars or Adidas Stan Smiths are great choices. Skip the socks, please.

-Sports clothing is for sports: Nylon mesh shorts are fine on the basketball court, running shorts are fine at the gym. When you’re not involved in athletic pursuit, opt instead for more sophisticated shorts cut similar to trousers.