These shorts definitely have an athletic feel, but 1000% can be dressed up. There's a lot of versatility and they're extremely comfortable. I'm on the taller side and rarely find shorts that are long enough AND cute at the same time, and these shorts cover all the bases. Depending on your waist/hip size ratio, I might recommend sizing down. I'm 5'7, 175-180lbs, waist being anywhere between a 29-32 depending on the day, and I purchased a Large. There's a lot of wiggle room with this size but they definitely still look like they fit appropriately - however, I may purchase a Medium just to compare the fit.