Janet Leigh wearing jeans in the 1950s
Finding the perfect pair of jeans is NOT easy. We asked around for the most common problems you have when looking for jeans, got our hands on literally hundreds of pairs and then tried them all on so you don't have to. Our fashion editor Amy even made a little video so you can see her favourites in the flesh. You're welcome.
Q: What are the most flattering jeans if you have a bit of a tummy?
A: It’s a tricky one this. You want to avoid a muffin top, but sometimes going for a higher waist can make your tummy look even more rounded. In our experience the key is to go for jeans that reach your belly button; high enough for a bit of extra coverage, but not so high that they cut you in half.
Q: Is there such a thing as a slightly less skinny skinny?
A: Ah, the classic over-stuffed sausages problem you get with super-skinny jeans: not a good look. We’ve found that jeans with too much stretch are a problem here – look for denim that still has a good weight to it and just enough give to make them comfy. And if they make your legs look squashed, remember there’s no shame in going up a size.
Q: Where can I get jeans that fit my bum but don’t gape at the waist?
A: If you have a slim waist and an ample bottom (lucky you!), jeans can be an absolute nightmare. Anything that makes your behind look like a peach is liable to be too wide on the waistband and flash your knickers as soon as you sit down. We don’t know how they manage it, but these styles fit BOTH areas like a glove.
Q: What brands are best if you have long legs?
A: It’s all well and good us telling you that cropped jeans are, like, SOOO on trend, but maybe you just want a pair of strides that actually reach your ankles (it’s not much to ask). We gave these to the tallest girl in the office to try and she was proper impressed.
Q: And if you have shorter legs?
A: This applies to quite a few of us here at InStyle, so we relished the opportunity to hunt out the best jeans for small people. If you’d rather not cut off ALL your jeans for the Marques’Almeida frayed-effect (although that IS a great solution), these are the business. It’s often worth looking at cropped styles, which will be full-length on you.
Q: Where can I get good quality jeans on a budget?
A: “When did it become normal to spend more than £150 on a pair of jeans?” you cry. It’s true, prices have gone sky high in recent years, but maybe you’re not obsessed by rare Japanese selvedge denim and don’t care about the latest in shaping technology. In which case, head to these high street stores for a simple, well-fitting pair of jeans.
Pick up the February issue of InStyle now - it's a denim special!