The Budget Babe | Affordable Fashion & Style Blog

Old Navy's Skinny "Citizen Surplus" Cargos: A Review

Old Navy sent me two complimentary pairs of their new Skinny "Citizen Surplus" Cargos ($34.50) to test and as much as I love the look, they don't fit me right. Epic fail. The crotch is way too low while the calves are really tight. I'm 5'8" and they are about 4 inches too short (I'd have to tuck them inside boots to disguise this flaw). Also, after wearing them for a few hours, they started to sag dramatically. I hoisted them up with a belt but it was a constant struggle to keep those puppies up! Who knows, might just be my body type doesn't work with this cut, but I've noticed similar comments in customer reviews on despite the positive 4 star rating. This was a big letdown considering how hard it is to find this look without spending a small fortune on the designer brands (, , etc.)

Has anyone else had better luck with Old Navy's slim cargos?

Shown above: Plaid peacoat, turtleneck and skinny cargos, all Old Navy!

I love mine!! My problem is always that skinny pants have to fit my waist so the legs are bigger. These fit me perfectly. I'm also 5'1" so being too short was not an issue for me. The regular length fit me fine.
#1 Tracie on 2010-11-01 15:48 (Reply)
You are so lucky! I wish mine would just stay up, I could deal with the length by just tucking them into boots, but I can't deal with the saggy crotch :-)
#1.1 The Budget Babe on 2010-11-01 16:36 (Reply)
I'm 5ft 7in average build and the cargos were so short on me too, also really tight on the calves. Lately, I've found that the skinny jeans( Styles Diva and Sweetheart) I purchased from Old Navy have been sagging/bagging after only a few hours of wearing. I've got pairs from a few years ago and they fit fine, has me wondering if they changed the cut on the jeans or are just using a different fabrication.
#1.1.1 Elle on 2010-11-02 10:34 (Reply)
I saw these but missed the boat - can't get my size anymore boo hoo. They look great on you! such a find! xx
#2 Could I Have That? (Homepage) on 2010-11-01 16:02 (Reply)
I was at Old Navy about to buy some but they didnt have them in my size. I am however looking to buy some from american eagle, they went on sale for about 30 bucks, so not bad! And they look just as cute!
#3 kelsey on 2010-11-01 16:31 (Reply)
I purchased these a month ago and ended up returning them. I purchased the petite version and the size I purchased online was big in certain places and tight in others. I went to the store to try to exchange it for a smaller size but they didn't have they dont carry petites in store, so I tried on the regular and they were tight. I was really banking on them fitting too...
#4 Vanessa (Homepage) on 2010-11-01 16:36 (Reply)
Target has some GREAT skinny cargos. I have worn mine 12-15 times already this fall and gotten lots of compliments. They have held up well during washings and were only $20, which is well worth a trendy style. My only regret is that I didn't buy two pairs.
#5 Laura on 2010-11-01 17:00 (Reply)
I know the ones you're talking about, I regret not buying them! I kept putting it off and then they sold out in my size. But I did try them on and they felt awesome and fit great.
#5.1 The Budget Babe on 2010-11-01 18:02 (Reply)
I own two pairs of these and LOVE them! I sized down one size because my normal size was a bit too big in the waist. Yes, the crotch is a litle odd feeling, but it doesn't outwardly look weird in my opinion. They fit well the whole day and didn't stretch out too bad. I am super excited about them! You can see them on me here:
#6 Jenni (Homepage) on 2010-11-01 17:41 (Reply)
Loft has some great skinny cargos. They come in a curvey fit which is perfect for me. They come in great colors, too!
#7 Meg on 2010-11-01 18:05 (Reply)
I am 5 4 and they actually fit me length wise perfectly! I do think they sag a bit as the day goes on but they hugged my curves and I was pretty happy with them. I actually just did an outfit post with them last week when went apple picking:
#8 DWJ (Homepage) on 2010-11-01 21:37 (Reply)
I just bought these yesterday and wore them today. Had troubles with the crotch as well (I'm about 5'2" and bought the regular length), but I didn't wear them with a belt, so hopefully they won't sag as much when I wear them with a belt. I really love the look of them, and I got quite a few compliments on them from my friends.
#9 Megan on 2010-11-01 21:44 (Reply)
old navy pants never fit me so i didn't even bother.

i bought 2 pair from american eagle and they fit awful. the rise was much too low and the fit was just weird. i think that's why they keep getting marked down.
#10 amarie on 2010-11-01 22:08 (Reply)
Old Navy Jeans/Pants have never fit me right. I've tried on their styles occasionally over the years and not had any luck. I'm 5'5" 120lbs with rounder hips. I also have terrible issues with american eagle jeans.
#11 Jen on 2010-11-02 07:51 (Reply)
I could not agree more on the American Eagle jeans, they are TERRIBLE. Way too low rise, weird crotch, super tight thighs, and odd lengths.
#11.1 MEP on 2010-11-02 08:10 (Reply)
Yes! I'm seeing other commenters post the same issues. Glad I'm not the only one who thinks their fits/sizing are super wierd.
#11.1.1 Jen on 2010-11-02 11:39 (Reply)
After much deliberation in the dressing room, I passed on the Old Navy skinny cargos as well. The length was okay but I was between sizes -- the smaller was uncomfortably tight, and the larger looked too baggy and didn't fit well (I thought a dryer cycle on hot might fix that). I wasn't wild about the color selection either. They were on sale when I tried them on, but were still more expensive than my Target skinny cargos for which I paid full price. I usually wear jeans and couldn't justify another pair of skinny cargos so I put them back. Glad to hear I dodged a bullet on the stretch problems!

BB -- did you get a chance to try the Old Navy skinny cords? They were sold out of everything but sizes 14 and up when I was there.
#12 MEP on 2010-11-02 08:07 (Reply)
Actually, I have better luck with good ol bootcut Levi's from the jr. dept. at Kohls. :-)
#13 Jen on 2010-11-02 08:08 (Reply)
I tried on the Old Navy skinny cargos and thought the exact same things you did. I ended up getting similar pants from Ann Taylor Loft on sale for $25 that I love and fit much better, and without the sag!
#14 Katie (Homepage) on 2010-11-02 09:46 (Reply)
I have stopped buying pants from Old Navy because of the bagging out issue. It happens every time (with the exception of dress pants). I have the same issues with most Gap pants as well. I found some great American Eagle skinny cargos at T.J. Maxx for $14.99, and although AE jeans usually fit me pretty horribly (too big in the waist, too tight in the thighs, which is a shame, since they offer petite sizes) these are super soft and fit just right.
#15 Sara R (Homepage) on 2010-11-02 09:49 (Reply)
What a timely article. I purchased a pair last Friday (on sale for $15). I am also 5'8 and I had the same sizing issues. The size 6 fit me ok but the calves were too tight and the length was too short. So, I purchased a size 8 for the length which didn't fit too bad in the store. But after hours of wearing them they sagged.
#16 Gina on 2010-11-02 10:15 (Reply)
OMG! i lost sleep waiting for these to come out. I also did not want to pay the ridiculous amt os $ for the J Brand cargos. Running to old navy, i did get in on the promo sale of $22. but cant keep the suckers up. return for a bigger size, returned those for my regular size and have a belt on really tight, still every time i climb the subway stairs i have to pull and wiggle them back up. Not sexy! but the length with high heels looks great. just keep the top covered...
#17 yvette on 2010-11-02 11:07 (Reply)
I saw these on Bethenny Frankel on the cover of this month's HEALTH magazine and Fell in love with them...Bethenny is probably a size 0 so i am hoping They will work for me as they are so darn cute....I am going to go try them today, and keep all your tips here in mind!!! Thank you....
#18 J.Mo on 2010-11-02 11:20 (Reply)
I bought these last week but Im usually a size 0 but couldnt even fit into those so I went one size up. They fit pretty good so far. Sadly I got them for 22 bucks but i went back and now theyre 16 bucks!
#19 Jas on 2010-11-02 12:09 (Reply)
I appreciate the honest review BB! I haven't had the best of luck with Old Navy pants either. I'm 5'10" and they just never fit right. I do however... love the selection of dresses and skirts during the summer.
#20 Janel on 2010-11-02 14:33 (Reply)
i think they are supposed to be short. online they say "ankle length".
#21 michelle on 2010-11-02 15:28 (Reply)
Try the skinny cargos at Ann Taylor Loft - they were on sale for less than $15 a couple of weeks ago. I'm 5 feet tall and the petite size fit me perfectly.
#22 Simi B on 2010-11-02 16:37 (Reply)
i have a question the striped top you're wearing w/the vest is that from old navy also?? i love everything you tried on it looks so cute i have 2 go 2 old navy asap!!
#23 Sonya on 2010-11-02 21:50 (Reply)
I love the striped vest above all...
#24 elnz (Homepage) on 2010-11-03 02:27 (Reply)
When I saw these online I RAN to the store, unfortunately, they fit horribly, They sagged in the crotch, were tight in the legs but big in the waist.. It's almost as if they were made for 2 different sizes or something. I even went back and exchanged for another size, to give them another chance, and had to return them. I really wanted to make them work but didn't:(
#25 Nora on 2010-11-03 08:41 (Reply)
I bought the LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them-the petite and the regulars fit wonderfully-one is just longer than the other. I actually bought some zippers to add to the bottoms of one of the pairs because I didn't want to fork out the cash for the j-brand cuties.
#26 Cara (Homepage) on 2010-11-03 15:24 (Reply)
Oh those are cute, I may have to get me a pair!
#27 Budget Chic (Homepage) on 2010-11-03 15:25 (Reply)
My apologies-my previous comment did not appear as I wrote it (#26). I meant to say that I purchased my skinny cargos from LOFT and I LOVE them.
#28 Cara (Homepage) on 2010-11-03 15:27 (Reply)
I LOVE Mine. I'm shorter and a little bit curvy. (5'4 and 155 lbs)

Coincidentally, I also got the Prep coat in orange. Ha.
#29 Melanie (Homepage) on 2010-11-16 00:05 (Reply)
Leave a comment
E-Mail addresses will not be displayed and will only be used for E-Mail notifications.
Enclosing asterisks marks text as bold (*word*), underscore are made via _word_.
Standard emoticons like :-) and ;-) are converted to images.
E-Mail addresses will not be displayed and will only be used for E-Mail notifications.