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Everyone loves their jeans, but sometimes we end up with a pair that bags, gaps or looks unfashionable. How are jeans supposed to fit? Do you have to pay a small fortune to find a pair of jeans that are comfortable and flattering. I don’t think so, and since we are receiving a big shipment of Not Your Daughter’s Jeans, I thought a jean guide was in order. (adapted from Teri Agins) The more information that you have, the better your fit will be.

  • The two measurements most widely marketed by jean manufacturers is the waist and the inseam (or the distance from the crotch to the ankle). If you know this measurement, you can start with a better idea of what style to try. Fits are approximate, though, because cuts and styles vary among manufacturers.
  • I have found that a size six in one pair fits like a 10 in another.
  • Jeans makers employ fit models of all different shapes to develop the silhouette and fit of the jean. ¬†That’s why all jeans fit differently. Your quest is to find the maker that uses a fit model who is shaped like you.
  • Look for descriptions on the jeans label that identify the fit: high rise, low rise, skinny jeans, boot cut, curvy fit, relaxed fit & athletic fit.
  • Your job is to match your figure to the description. Find styles that seem to mimic your figure. Think “like to like”.
  • Most people settle for fit and style. Don’t.
  • To avoid this “settling”, you will have to try on quite a few pairs.
  • Use a three way mirror to examine your backside.
  • Look at pocket placement. Pockets that are too low will give your rump a visual sag. Pockets that are set too wide will make your hips look bigger. Embellishments will bring attention to your backside.
  • Correct pocket placement is a great “asset”.
  • Avoid jeans that bag in your butt or are to big around your upper thighs.
  • Avoid styles that are too short in the crotch and give you a “wedgie”.
  • Spandex is a girls best friend, but be wary of too much. Some spandex in the fabric usually means that you can go down a size. Too much spandex (more than 2%) will cause the jean to bag at the knees.
  • Make sure that your jeans aren’t too long or too short. Narrow jeans can be ankle length while bootcut must end at or below the heel of your shoe. If your jean is too long, roll the cuff or get it hemmed.
  • Boot cut styles will make your legs look longer.
  • Skinny jeans work well on most when paired with a tunic.
  • Right now all leg styles seem to be popular: skinny to wide legged. This season you can be fashionable with any leg.
  • Don’t buy a pair of jeans that are baggy at the knees.
  • The darker washes are a little more formal and wear better than the lighter colors.
  • If your jeans gap at the waist, a good remedy is The Miracle Belt. It is a clear plastic belt that holds in the waist and smooths down the pouch that the button makes.
  • Consider some pull on jeans. They fit smoothly over your stomach and are very comfortable.
  • When you find a favorite style, buy several pairs because jean makers often change the fit from season to season.

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