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Why am I just now learning about these comfy 'tummy control' dress pants?

They're from the same brand as my favorite slimming shorts.
Woman wearing black slimming dress pants
Katie Jackson / TODAY

In a perfect world, I'd never deal with what I call "big-belly days." But I don't live in a perfect world. I hate days when I'm bloated or my abdomen swells — both symptoms of my Crohn's disease — but still have to be out in public and can't wear sweats or loungewear.

I thought the only solution to wearing pants on those days involved unbuttoning the top button — until I discovered Amazon's bestselling $40 pants with "tummy control."

Rekucci Pull-On Knit Straight Pant with Tummy Control

What is tummy control?

I think the definition of tummy control is subjective. For me, tummy control doesn't mean having a flat stomach so much as it means that people won't mistake me for pregnant. It's happened before. On my trim frame (I'm 5 feet 5 inches with a 26-inch waist) and with my flat chest (34 A on a good day), a bloated belly doesn't go unnoticed.

The slimming, mid-rise waistband
Katie Jackson

For Rekucci, the maker of these slimming pants — which have an impressive 4.4-star rating from 600 reviews — the secret to tummy control involves a "smooth contour waistband." It also helps to have accent snaps that draw the eye to your waist, not your stomach. I'm not incredibly familiar with Rekucci, but I do know after owning a pair of its slimming shorts that the brand must use an awesome focus group to gather so much insight about what women want and where they want it.

It's like the unicorn of pants

The women who left reviews for these pants seem incredibly diverse. I think that's because these pants come in sizes 2 through 18 and are available in both short and tall lengths. They also come in 18 colors, so whether you like a conservative shade of "camel" or sexy "smoke snake," there's probably a swatch or two for you.

Besides a basic black yoga pant, I don't know of any other pant that appeals to so many women. Personally, I was torn between the classic shade of black and the slightly more eye-catching burgundy-herringbone pattern, but I ultimately ended up with black. Although at just $40 a pair, it might not be long before I have the burgundy too.

I can do squats in them

Passing the squat test
Katie Jackson

Unless you work at a gym, you probably don't need to do squats at work. I, however, use the squat test to determine how comfortable pants are. If I can squat in them without tearing anything or leaving creases in my stomach, they pass.

These pants have spandex in them, so not only can I comfortably squat, but I can also do Frankenstein kicks or a dozen sun salutations while wearing them.

The slimming pants front pocket
Katie Jackson

If it weren't for the metallic accents and chino pockets, they could pass as designer yoga pants. Note: the front pockets are small — just big enough to hold a debit card — and the back pockets are faux.

I don't need to undo any buttons

These pants have buttons, but they're fake. Fortunately, these pants don't need buttons. Even when my belly feels uncomfortably round, I love that I can just pull these on and pull them off in seconds. Most of my bloating is just beneath my belly button, and since these pants are mid-rise, they hug me (or hold me in) at just the right spot.

Slimming pants full length
Katie Jackson

The best part is that not only do I not look as bloated, but I don't feel as bloated. It might be a psychological thing, but I have no problem with that. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to add the burgundy-herringbone pair to my cart.

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