The Best JeansToday I'd love to show you some of my favorite places to buy jeans. Some might surprise you, others will be easy on your wallet, others are aspirational if you really love to spend on jeans. If you love the jeans that you have, check back in tomorrow for fresh ideas for wearing jeans!
Best places to startOld Navy.
I know, some of you are going to wonder about this choice. Here's the thing: I think any woman looking for a new pair of jeans needs to get out of her comfort zone. Unless you LOVE the way your jeans look on you-and everyone around you does, too-then step away from the store where you've been buying them. Step into a store, like Old Navy or a department store, that has lots of options. Old Navy has the Rock Star (slightly lower rise and skinny legs), the Sweetheart (curvier fit), a good boyfriend style, and others. Since they're not particularly expensive, you might try a style that you're testing out without feeling so worried about the price that you won't go for it. Department stores like Macys, Nordstrom and Bloomingdales tend to have a good selection of sizes, too. If you're a 00-2, start at a department store because you'll be more likely to find styles made for adults rather than the low-rise, whiskered styles you'll find at stores geared toward teens. The same if you're a 14-16 because you might fit in multiple departments and can try on a variety of styles in the same place. Now is the time to get in some good jeans, too, because a lot of department stores have big after-Christmas sales!
Another great place to start? Eddie Bauer. That's right, along with Levi's (which makes sizes 2-24), Eddie Bauer recently released a line of jeans made to accentuate different body types. Oprah loves their jeans made to avoid the gap that sometimes happens when jeans can't accommodate a waistline that's smaller than the butt. And read Marian's review here.
Best Expensive JeansMost of my jeans come from the following places: The Gap, Target, TJMaxx, and Levis. Clearly, I don't value spending a lot on jeans. But I think I am comfortable shopping in those stores for jeans while others might not be. Here's why: I follow a plan (more on that below) to find jeans that I love, and I like to have a few pairs. I'd rather spend less on a few than more on one, basically. What I look for is a consistent wash (no whiskers or heavy fading), a flattering shape for my body, and a higher rise (helps flatten my stomach).
But, if you want to spend more money, Rag & Bone are some of the most flattering jeans I've ever tried on. And J Brand. However, I'd also list Zara and H&M as the two best places to find knock offs of expensive jeans. No, the fit won't be as good, but they're often, oh, an eighth of the price so in my mind, it's worth it.
Another great mid-range expensive (but not designer expensive) jean is at Madwell.
The Best Skinny JeansAbercrombie and Fitch
The PlanGrab your size and two sizes up and down in every style you might consider in a dark or medium dark wash and try them on with a flattering shirt that you like. Do not try them on without a shirt. Do not try them on staring just at your butt. Try them on with a shirt (preferably one that you own) that you would normally wear with them (longer with skinny jeans, for example) and shoes. Don't let me see you in there with your white socks on talking about how they make your legs look short. Put your shoes on, pull your shirt down and determine whether they look and feel better than what you came in. Those should go in the "maybe" area of the dressing room. The ones that feel less good than what you arrived in go in the "not for me" pile. Continue until you've tried them all on-and gone back for different sizes if needed. The goal is a pair that you love the way they look and feel. Better to much better than how you arrived is also acceptable.
Come back tomorrow for more ideas on how to style jeans!
Also, how to make white jeans cooler and tips from a "40 something" blogger on buying jeans.