Gear Review: LA Police Gear Women's Tactical Pants

Gear Review: LA Police Gear Women's Tactical Pants

Tactical pants are the modern day "cool kid" version of cargo pants. They fit a ton of gear and are extra durable. Most of my guy friends have known this for quite a while, and they rock this style of trousers daily. As a lady it's been a big challenge to find equivalently useful pants that balance both style and cost. A girl's got to look good, right? ;)

Cue the LA Police Gear women's tactical pants product line, which currently consists of the Women's Operator Tactical Pants (MSRP $22.99) and Women's Stretch Ops Pants (MSRP $24.99). The Operator Tactical Pants are the typical tactical pants - they have eight pockets, a slightly more straight-leg fit, and a few v-loops to clip carabiners to. The Stretch Ops Pants are a more modern take on the tactical pant concept, with a slightly more fitted waist and leg. 

What follows is a review of the features, fit, and overall feel of the LA Police Gear women's operator pants. I was between six and eight months pregnant while reviewing these pants, so they fit me a bit differently than the average woman. This review includes details about how I wore these non-maternity pants with my growing belly. Since most women who would be interested in a review of tactical pants are unlikely to be pregnant, I contacted fellow shooter and writer Annette Stevens-Doerr to try out the pants and give feedback, too. Annette blogs over at WeShoot2 and gets to the range frequently, so her comments are pretty insightful regarding the everyday wear of these pants.

I received these pants from the manufacturer for the purpose of this review. I have not been compensated for the review, and all opinions are my own.

Me and my eight month baby bump in the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants, with pockets stuffed full of things that will not fit in maternity pants. (Josh Monroe photo)

Me and my eight month baby bump in the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants, with pockets stuffed full of things that will not fit in maternity pants. (Josh Monroe photo)

"Pregnant people need pants with pockets, too!"

As previously stated, while I reviewed these pants I was between six and eight months into my first pregnancy. After a few months of wearing maternity pants, which are notoriously pocketless, I loved the practicality of these pants. I have my own method of wearing "normal" pants while pregnant, using an elastic headband and a long tank top. This method worked better on the Operator Tactical Pants than the Stretch Ops Pants, since the Operator Tactical Pants have some elastic in the back of the waistband. The Stretch Ops Pants tended to slide down during the day as I wore them in this way, but I did not encounter that at all with the Operator Tactical Pants.

This is my method for wearing "regular" pants as maternity pants. I use an elastic headband for running tied to a belt loop. I wrap it around the belt loop on the other side of the zipper then back around to loop it over the button. Then I pull a long tank top down over it. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

This is my method for wearing "regular" pants as maternity pants. I use an elastic headband for running tied to a belt loop. I wrap it around the belt loop on the other side of the zipper then back around to loop it over the button. Then I pull a long tank top down over it. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

First Impressions - Sizing and Shipping

The pants shipped quickly from LA Police Gear, arriving at my doorstep within three days of placing the order. The price on these pants is incredibly reasonable, and significantly lower than similar pants from other brands. Both styles come in regular and long lengths with options in black, khaki, coyote, OD green, and navy.

When the LA Police Gear pants arrived, they were packaged in plastic wrap to stay clean and wrinkle-free and shipped fast. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

When the LA Police Gear pants arrived, they were packaged in plastic wrap to stay clean and wrinkle-free and shipped fast. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

As far as sizing goes, I ended up reading the reviews on the LA Police Gear sites for each pair of pants and ordering up a size from my typical size 10 or 12. With the size 14 I had no problem fitting my legs, my butt, or (part of) my belly into either style of pants. Annette found that she had to order up one size from typical on the Operator Tactical Pants and two sizes up from typical on the Stretch Ops Pants. According to Annette, the Stretch Ops Pants are "more midrise than the Operator Tactical Pants and fit tight across the hips but gap in the waist (which would make it easy to carry at 6 o'clock!)." 

Annette found the LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants to be more form fitting in the legs and hips and looser at the waist, which can be a nice feature for the woman who wears an IWB holster. (Annette Stevens-Doerr photo)

Annette found the LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants to be more form fitting in the legs and hips and looser at the waist, which can be a nice feature for the woman who wears an IWB holster. (Annette Stevens-Doerr photo)

Both Annette and I ordered the regular length pants in each style. At 5'5" and 5'6" respectively, we both really liked the regular length on both styles of pants. 

The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants in "regular" length were the perfect fit for my 5'5" frame. The hem of the pants will not drag on the ground nor will it rise up when I sit down. (Josh Monroe photo)

The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants in "regular" length were the perfect fit for my 5'5" frame. The hem of the pants will not drag on the ground nor will it rise up when I sit down. (Josh Monroe photo)

washing and care

One of the first things I did when I received my order from LA Police Gear was look at the "care" label, which I found to be super easy to read. Both pairs of pants are machine washable and can be tossed in the dryer, which makes for easy care. After several wears and washes, the pants remain as good a fit as they were when I first tried them on - no shrinking or color changes, which is great!

The LA Police Gear Stretch Ops pants are machine washable. Mine did not shrink or otherwise change fit after going through the washer and dryer (machine wash cold). (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

The LA Police Gear Stretch Ops pants are machine washable. Mine did not shrink or otherwise change fit after going through the washer and dryer (machine wash cold). (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

deeper dive: the La Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants

Now let's get down to the nuts and bolts (or hems and buttons) of the pants. Starting with the Stretch Ops style, Annette and I both found these to fit more like jeans, though the fabric is not quite as stretchy as denim. The fit of the Stretch Ops Pants can best be described as modern and stylish. It is amazing that these pants have so much useful storage built in, when they look so "normal."

The LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants fit great. Even with cargo pockets on the thighs, these pants have a modern fit and look stylish. Using my "DIY" maternity pant adaptation, I wore these pants while seven months pregnant and loved them! (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

The LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants fit great. Even with cargo pockets on the thighs, these pants have a modern fit and look stylish. Using my "DIY" maternity pant adaptation, I wore these pants while seven months pregnant and loved them! (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

I had no trouble maneuvering in the Stretch Ops pants though with my method of wearing them while pregnant, they tended to slide down as the day wore on. This is more a problem with the fact that I didn't actually use the button on the pants than it is with the pants themselves.

Annette thought the fit was great, and she had no trouble getting around town or the range in them. "The articulated knees and gusseted crotch make bending, stretching, and getting into weird positions pretty easy," she said. Another thing Annette noticed was the Stretch Ops belt loops are thick and sturdy. "There are four across the back itself, making your belt secure when carrying an IWB holster." 

The fit of the LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants is modern and flattering. The fabric has a little bit of give to it, which makes it easy to walk, hike, and run drills at the range. (Annette Stevens-Doerr photo)

The fit of the LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants is modern and flattering. The fabric has a little bit of give to it, which makes it easy to walk, hike, and run drills at the range. (Annette Stevens-Doerr photo)

There are seven pockets in the Stretch Ops Pants. Two are where you'd expect to find them, by the hips. Two more are in the typical location on the back of the pants, and these are particularly useful and deep back pockets. There are two more that are cargo-style on the side of the thighs, and these are really impressive for how stealthy they are. There is one final semi-hidden pocket on the right side of the front of the pants that fits a small item like a spare magazine, keys, FitBit, or small-ish smart phone.

The LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants have seven pockets and articulated knees. The construction of the fabric around the knees allowed for a lot of movement and the pockets on the side of the thighs fit my huge "phablet" type cell phone. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

The LA Police Gear Stretch Ops Pants have seven pockets and articulated knees. The construction of the fabric around the knees allowed for a lot of movement and the pockets on the side of the thighs fit my huge "phablet" type cell phone. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

I particularly liked the cargo pockets - they fit my giant phone (a Nexus 6P) on one side and a holstered Ruger LCP on the other side without looking too stuffed. This is exactly what I was looking for in tactical pants - the combination of useful and stylish! Annette agreed that the Stretch Ops Pants' pockets were pretty fantastic: "I LOVE that the back pockets don't have flaps, making it fast and easy to shove a spare magazine in, or a cell phone, on the run. The cargo pockets have a vertical gusset so they hold a decent amount, but they're sown cinched in on the top and bottom so they don't make you look like 'thunder thighs.'"

The LA Police Gear Women's Stretch Ops Pants feature pockets big enough to fit any big phone. (Annette Stevens-Doerr photo)

The LA Police Gear Women's Stretch Ops Pants feature pockets big enough to fit any big phone. (Annette Stevens-Doerr photo)

Deeper Dive: The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants

The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants are the more obviously "tactical" of the two women's styles from LAPG. This style features one more pocket than the Stretch Ops Pants (for a total of eight pockets), and it includes four thick plastic d-rings to secure clips, carabiners or other items. These were my favorite of the two LAPG women's tactical pants, because they feature elastic at the back of the waistband. That made it really comfortable to wear these pants while eight months pregnant! 

Even while 8 months pregnant, a girl needs pockets! The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical pants fit a ton of stuff into their eight pockets. (Josh Monroe photo)

Even while 8 months pregnant, a girl needs pockets! The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical pants fit a ton of stuff into their eight pockets. (Josh Monroe photo)

The fabric on the Operator Tactical Pants feels really durable. There are a few reinforced areas, like the seat of the pants and at the bottom of both front hip pockets. This is a great feature, as the pocket reinforcement will make the pants last longer with my every day carry knife. 

The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants feature a reinforced area of both pockets. This extra tough fabric makes it easy to install and remove items with clips, like my Benchmade pocket knife. I feel confident this pocket won't wear out after lots of inserting and removing the knife clip. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants feature a reinforced area of both pockets. This extra tough fabric makes it easy to install and remove items with clips, like my Benchmade pocket knife. I feel confident this pocket won't wear out after lots of inserting and removing the knife clip. (The "How-To" Gun Girl photo)

Annette pointed out that the fabric on the Operator Tactical Pants feels like it has less give than the fabric on the Stretch Ops Pants. I would tend to agree, though the fit is so comfortable that I didn't notice any tugging or tightness in the legs, hips, or butt area. "The material is nice and heavy, leading me to believe they're very durable, but they don't stretch at all," says Annette. "The knees are articulated and reinforced for prone or crawling, which is nice." 

The belt loops on the Operator Tactical Pants are thick and sturdily attached, making it easy to wear a gun belt. The bottom of the legs on the Operator Tactical Pants feature a draw string so that you can tighten down the leg openings around your ankle if you so desired. I just tied mine loose, because I liked the size of the leg opening.

The LA Police Gear Women's Operator Tactical Pants had enough give in all the right places. Gussets behind the knees and in the crotch and upper thigh area make them easy to hike in. These same features would help with changing position on the shooting range, going from standing to prone. (Josh Monroe photo)Β 

The LA Police Gear Women's Operator Tactical Pants had enough give in all the right places. Gussets behind the knees and in the crotch and upper thigh area make them easy to hike in. These same features would help with changing position on the shooting range, going from standing to prone. (Josh Monroe photo) 

The one downside to the fabric on the Operator Tactical Pants is their proclivity to attract fur and hair. My neighbor's husky's shed fur was practically magnetized to the pants. I did not notice this issue with the Stretch Ops Pants, and a lint roller easily resolved it.

The Operator Tactical Pants did not stand a chance against my neighbor's husky, who sheds quite a bit of fur. ("How To" Gun Girl photo)

The Operator Tactical Pants did not stand a chance against my neighbor's husky, who sheds quite a bit of fur. ("How To" Gun Girl photo)

The pockets on the Operator Tactical Pants are in the same place as they are on the Stretch Ops Pants, with an additional front pocket on the left side for a magazine, small phone, FitBit, etc. I've had trouble with back pocket flaps drying out or up on other pairs of pants, but happily that was not the case with these pants.

A rear view of the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants, which feature tons of useful pockets and a comfortable fit. (Josh Monroe photo)

A rear view of the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants, which feature tons of useful pockets and a comfortable fit. (Josh Monroe photo)

I could fit so much stuff into the pockets of the Operator Tactical Pants. Pictures speak louder than words, so the following photos show off how I stored pens, a knife, my Ruger LCP and a spare magazine, lip balm, my phone, sunglasses, keys, and hair ties in the eight pockets of the Operator Tactical Pants. All of those things were in my pockets in the photo above, but you couldn't really tell. These pants do a fantastic job storing a lot without becoming heavy or looking bulky. For the lady who conceal carries, these pants are totally worth it.

The LA Police Gear Women's Operator Tactical Pants have a lot of storage options, including two front pockets that are perfect for spare magazines or keys. (Josh Monroe photo)

The LA Police Gear Women's Operator Tactical Pants have a lot of storage options, including two front pockets that are perfect for spare magazines or keys. (Josh Monroe photo)

I felt comfortable and confident carrying my Ruger LCP in a Flashbang holster clipped to the cargo pocket d-ring. The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants are a great option for on-body concealed carry. (Josh Monroe photo)

I felt comfortable and confident carrying my Ruger LCP in a Flashbang holster clipped to the cargo pocket d-ring. The LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants are a great option for on-body concealed carry. (Josh Monroe photo)

My Ruger LCP fit easily into the cargo pocket of the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants. I kept it in a Flashbang holster which I secured to the d-ring in the pocket on my strong side. (Josh Monroe photo)

My Ruger LCP fit easily into the cargo pocket of the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants. I kept it in a Flashbang holster which I secured to the d-ring in the pocket on my strong side. (Josh Monroe photo)

There was no problem fitting the Nexus 6P "phablet" smartphone into the front pockets of the Women's Operator Tactical Pants. (Josh Monroe photo)

There was no problem fitting the Nexus 6P "phablet" smartphone into the front pockets of the Women's Operator Tactical Pants. (Josh Monroe photo)

A girl's got to have some of these accessories, and there's plenty of space for them in the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants. (Josh Monroe photo)

A girl's got to have some of these accessories, and there's plenty of space for them in the LA Police Gear Operator Tactical Pants. (Josh Monroe photo)

Summary: definitely worth the money

Both the Stretch Ops and Operator Tactical Pants are what I would consider good buys. The price point is in a sweet spot for these pants. At less $25 per pair, you get a great value for versatile, stylish range or every day pants. I would wear these to work, on a hike, and while shooting. Just make sure you order one or two sizes up, depending on the style you're ordering, and you'll be a happy camper. LA Police Gear hit a home run with these pants, from the design to the price. 

If you have any questions about these pants, this review, or anything else, please get in touch by either clicking on the link below or commenting at the end of the post. I appreciate your feedback!

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