Hey, we're right there with you: There's just nothing that can compete with a favorite pair of jeans. But when you do have to doff your denim – and yes, sometimes you have to – a standout runner-up is a pair of Dockers Alpha Khakis. These ultra-modern pants fuse the rugged construction of denim with the more breathable comfort of cotton khaki. That translates to a rugged hybrid that can take a bit of the rough stuff without getting ruffled, while also keeping you from breaking a sweat in the summer sun, too. This season, the Alpha collection has added a few brighter colors to the usual mix of khaki, gray, and olive drab, which make them all the more appropriate at a summer backyard BBQ.

The Dockers design team took care to choose fabrics that would wear, wrinkle, and soften over time, like a good selvage. But unlike jeans, the lightweight Alphas – which sit low on the waist and slim through the leg – don't have the initial roughness or stiffness of most denim, and never get sticky when the weather gets humid. Pair a colored version (we like copen blue) with a crisp polo for a day look and a darker button-down for a relaxed dinner. It may be painful to shed your trusty jeans, but with a pair of Alpha's, walking away never felt better [$68; dockers.com]