Editor vs.Columnist: A Comparison and Fit Guide | On the Daily EXPRESS


Editor vs.Columnist: A Comparison and Fit Guide

Since many of you work in settings that require you to dress in something more professional than jeans, I wanted to give an overview of the two main dress pants options that Express has to offer: The Editor and The Columnist.

Here's a side-by-side comparison of these pants via Express.com:

Left: Wide Waistband Flare Editors  (in Dark Reed)
Right: Studio Stretch Barely Boot Columnist (in Cool Earth) 

Both of these pants come in three different leg openings: Flare, Barely Boot, and Slim. They also come in three different inseams: Short (30"), Regular (33"), and Long (35"). The Columnist also has few options in Ankle length, with a 27" inseam.

So what is the difference between The Columnist and The Editor? I tried them both on last week to compare, and it really comes down to one main point: THE FIT!

Here's how the Wide Waistband Editor Flare fit on me:

Express Editor Pants, Wide Waistband, Flare, Studio Stretch

These are labeled as "Low rise, straight through the hip & thigh." I found them to be cut generously in the hips and thighs, and I had to go down one size from my regular size at Express to get a good fit. If you are very petite, you may be sized out of these or need to enlist the help of a tailor to make them work. They were soft, comfortable, and very easy to move in. Low rise is also accurate as they hit a couple of inches below my belly button, but were definitely not too low for work pants.

Next up were the Studio Stretch Barely Boot Columnist

Express Columnist Pants, Studio Stretch, Barely Boot

These are also labeled as Low Rise, but they seem to be a little bit lower rise than the Editors when you compare how far below my belly button each pair sits. The tag describes them as "Fitted through the hip and thigh," and compared with the Editor they did feel more narrow and snug through the hip and thigh. I tried my regular Express size in these and it was a close fit through the hips but spacious in the waistband. I wouldn't have been able to size up or down without compromising fit in one area or another, so I would say they run true to size. But they are definitely a fitted, narrow dress pant.

You may also notice the Editors have flap back pockets and the Columnist just has slit back pockets, but back pockets vary within each style name.

The front pockets on the two pairs I tried on were also different. The Editors had a tiny front pocket that was hemmed shut but looked as though it could be carefully opened with a seam ripper. 

Here's an exterior and interior view of the Editor's front pockets:

And here's an exterior and interior view of front pockets on the Columnist:

Again, this is a feature that will probably vary from pant to pant, even within the same style name. But usable front pockets are an important detail to me in my pants, so I wanted to point it out to others who have the same preference.

I'll finish up my fit review with some side-by-side comparisons of Editor vs. Columnist pants:

Front view (Editor on the left, Columnist on the Right):

Express editor vs. columnist pants

Back view (Editor and Columnist):

Express Editor vs. columnist pants

I hope this helps you decide which style of pants will work best for you! If you need more office apparel ideas, make sure to check back next week as I am collaborating with several stylish professionals to create a Wear to Work Style Guide for Express pants that should give you plenty of inspiration!



  1. A) can i have your abs B) i've always loved the editor, but I cannot remember the last time I wore a pair. Ever since I left my strict business casual job 7 years ago, I think I have an aversion to legit office wear. They look amazing on you.

    1. :) You are too kind! These pants actually felt a lot more casual and comfortable than you would think "dress pants" would feel. The Columnists less so because of the straight fit, but the Editors were like Pajama pants with zippers.

  2. Those are some great working pants. I like the last pair, they fit your beautifully. I love wearing these pants as they are so comfortable.


    1. Thanks Anngelik! And yes, I was really impressed with the comfort.

  3. Thank you for the information. This was very helpful.

  4. Thank you very much for the info... They both fit pretty good on you. But, just one question: Which one of the fits do yo think will work better for a petite body with large hips and tiny waist??

    1. Hi Nenita! My guess is that the Editor would work best for that body type. Good luck!

  5. Ok, I have to say that based on these pictures, the Editor fits you SO MUCH BETTER!!! Which leads me to believe that the Editor would fit ME a lot better! You're adorable!!

  6. I ordered a pair of the Columnist pants and the fit was good EXCEPT they were really tight and creased/gripped around the knees and top of my calves. This was the barely boot, which surprised me-I would have expected this from straight or skinny cut. Are the Editor pant legs in boot cut a little wider? I'm 5'2", 133lbs. size 6 (Usually petite, but I usually order regular so I can get the length adjusted to how I like them-petites are often cut too short for my taste). Thanks!

    1. Hi there! It's been almost three years since I did this try-on session and post so my memory is not 100% perfect here, but I do believe the Editors just had a more relaxed/roomy fit throughout all the hips and legs. I remember the Columnist just feeling more snug and straight up-and-down throughout the hips and legs. It's definitely worth giving the editor a shot in your case!

  7. it would be more helpful if you compare exactly the same pant in editor and columnist.
    I.e. If you do Editor Flare pants do Columnist Flare, so we can see what the heck is the difference. Or Editor Barely Boot v Columist Barely Boot. I can't tell from the models on the website at all what the difference is.
    Based on this article I bought the Editor wide waistband flare, i like the wide waistband but don't like all the material at the bottom of my pants --- the pants are just too full. I wear a size 8 so maybe there is more pant on that size. Wouldn't get it again. Unfortunately the wide waistband does not seem be available in the Barely Boot cut (which is little narrower).

    1. Thanks for your comment! That's a really good point about them not being the exact style. It's been awhile since I did this post but I think I just tried on whatever they had in store in my size that day. If I do an updated version of this at some point I'll probably order online so I can have a better selection and make a more direct comparison of styles as you suggested!

  8. You are amazing.. I am shopping on express online right now and I googled "what is the difference between columnist and editor pant cuts at express?" And you have written an article EXACTLY on this specific thing AND included pictures. AND you are the same size as me (except I am Short not Regular)
    SO helpful Thank you SO MUCH

    1. Aw, I'm so glad this was helpful! It's hard (for me!) to believe this post was four years ago, so it's possible they have changed up the styles a bit since I haven't tried them on lately! And just for reference if you check any of my more recent posts I usually do wear a Short length in Express jeans. vaguely recall that they didn't carry short length in store back when I did this post though. Thanks so much for reading and commenting!


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I sincerely appreciate each and every one and always do my best to answer questions promptly!