Where To Buy Good Jeans For Women
To evaluate the quality, fit, and comfort of a wide variety of jeans, I researched hundreds of models online, and I tested 30 in person (I wear a size 31 waist by 30 length). I also assembled a panel of diverse and stylish men to test the jeans, including Neil Berrett, co-founder of Standard & Strange (who wears a size 34 waist by 32 length); Wirecutter privacy and security editor Thorin Klosowski (who wears jeans in a size 29 waist by 30 length, and who put your digital data concerns on the back burner to test 11 pairs of jeans); Chubstr founding editor Bruce Sturgell (who wears a size 44 waist by 30 length); and This Fits blogger Aliotsy Andrianarivo (who wears a size 33 waist by 28 length). Together we selected a well-loved and comfy pair of slim jeans with a classic American vibe, a stretchier pair of denim jeans in the widest variety of sizes, a flattering pair of straight slim jeans affordable enough to stock up on, and (my personal favorite) a heavyweight pair of jeans with a button fly. I also tested selvedge jeans and made a few personal recommendations.
where to buy good jeans for women
We try to keep our links up to date, but retailers may experience stock issues, and jeans companies tend to cycle similar versions of the same items under different names. If your size is unavailable through one of our links, try looking for another pair in the same cut with similar materials, which should be close to what we recommend.
How it feels: Well constructed and with a flattering cut, these close-fitting jeans offer the teensiest bit of stretch to make an already-comfortable pair of pants even more comfortable.
Though the other jeans we tested were made from 98% or 99% cotton, the Bonobos Premium Stretch Denim Jeans are made from 94% cotton, 5% polyester, and 1% elastane. That lower percentage of cotton is why the Bonobos jeans are especially comfortable and well equipped to handle a wider range of body types; cotton has less give than both polyester and elastane.
The Ford jeans were solidly constructed with tight and neat stitching. All of our testers agreed the jeans were extremely comfortable. And these jeans feature an easy elastic recovery that we expect will help them keep their shape and last for a long time. They shrank about 4 inches total in all dimensions after washing and drying.
The Ford jeans are made of 14-ounce denim (a measure of how much a square yard of the fabric weighs), which is the sort of thick and heavyweight fabric usually used on hard-wearing raw denim jeans. But in this case, the inclusion of a small amount of spandex makes the Buck Masons much more comfortable the first time you put them on, compared with raw denim.
How it feels: Though notably heavy, the Unbranded Brand UB101 Skinny Fit 14.5 oz Indigo Selvedge Denim jeans felt especially comfortable and durable after I broke them in for a month. A short fly made them trickier to button and unbutton quickly.
The Unbranded Brand jeans I tested were 14.5 ounces (common for midweight denim, but heavier than anything else we tested), and I found them and their rope-dried indigo exterior quite substantial and stiff at first. Breaking them in felt unnatural, like I was working against nature. Slowly but surely, though, the jeans began to give. After a few weeks, I started to look forward to putting them on.
Folks have also complained that the buttons and belt loops on the Unbranded Brand jeans may pop and fray within the first couple of years. And we noticed a couple of loose stitches, but nothing worrisome.
Shrinkage: We measured the dimensions of each pair of jeans, and then we washed and dried them, noting any shrinking that occurred. None of the pairs we recommended shrank notably, but it was an issue with some that we dismissed.
Look: I was determined to make some aesthetic decisions about each pair of jeans I tested. Was a pair of jeans awkwardly loose around the crotch? Did another pair of jeans have a retro-wavy design on its back pockets that had me spiraling about the summer of 2011?
I used the above criteria to cut the list down to 30 pairs of jeans to test in person. I wore each pair of jeans in a size 31 waist by 30 length. While wearing them, I inspected their construction and comfort. Then I washed and dried each pair of jeans to see how much they shrank in the wash.
I found 11 pairs of jeans worthy of further testing, and I sent them to a panel of experts to perform a blind test. The testers included: Wirecutter editor Thorin Klosowski (who wears jeans in a size 29 waist by 30 length); Neil Berrett, co-founder of Standard & Strange (who wears a size 34 waist by 32 length); Chubstr founding editor Bruce Sturgell (who wears a size 44 waist by 30 length); and This Fits blogger Aliotsy Andrianarivo (who wears a size 33 waist by 28 length).
The H&M Slim Jeans were a tighter and less-comfortable fit than the other jeans we tested even before we washed them, especially around the crotch. Then they shrank 4 inches in our tests. H&M suggests that you hand-wash them, which seems a silly task for a pair of $20 jeans.
We found loose threads around the waist and ankles of the scratchy-feeling American Eagle AirFlex+ Slim Jeans. The stitching down the legs was a bright orange, too, which made these look cheaper than other jeans we tested. The American Eagle jeans also shrank a whopping 6 inches in our tests, losing more than an inch individually from the hip, length, knee, and inseam.
The DL1961 Nick Slim jeans were dismissed for aesthetic reasons, despite being comfortable (though they felt stiff to the touch). The jeans were slim through the leg, but they flared out toward the ankle in an unflattering way.
To preserve the life of your jeans, wash them less often. According to Hazel Morley, VP of design at Bonobos, you should hold off on cleaning them until they get visibly dirty or begin to smell. She said that she washes hers as little as possible. You can go as long as 2 months, like writer Justin Krajeski explains in our guide to cleaning jeans.
With raw denim, it depends on how you want your jeans to look. Steve Cruz, the store manager at Naked & Famous Denim, said to get an even color fade and a more neutral look, wash them more. If you prefer more unique fading and wear lines throughout, wash your jeans as infrequently as possible.
Gap has one of the best inseam selections out there, with a majority of their styles available in petite, regular, and tall sizes. After months of searching, these high-rise jeans were one of my first truly successful forays into slouchy straight-leg denim.
Simple and just a little vintage-inspired, classic straight-leg jeans can be worn with everything from a blazer and heels to a T-shirt. Look to downtown label Khaite for a pristine pair that oozes forever cool.
Expose a flash of ankle (or new fall footwear) with a pair of cropped flared jeans. Or give your denim outfits a subtly western vibe with a pair that puddles at the ground à la these jeans from Made in Tomboy.
Think of this pair from ethical retailer Everlane as a refined take on mom jeans. This belly-button-covering, straight leg style accentuates your waist, and it comes in two lengths. We love this look for sweater weather, paired with chunky knits or a tucked-in tee with a blazer.
The most popular styles in 2022 include straight leg, bootcut, flare, wide leg and oversized jeans, according to the stylists we spoke to and our research on the market. To gauge what works best for you, try a few styles to see what suits you. Look for online retailers with generous return policies to avoid extra fees and headaches if you need to send anything back.
Styles right now range from cropped inseams to longer oversized denim that puddles slightly at your shoes. It may sound obvious, but when purchasing jeans, keep your height in mind and pay attention to inseam lengths for different pairs. Also, shoe choices will impact how the length and silhouette of the jean appears on you. A flared jean will look very different with flat sneakers than it will with a heeled boot.
Let's face it: There's nothing like a perfectly constructed pair of jeans to change your mood and make you feel like a million bucks. "When researching the best denim brands and styles, consider the three F's: fabric, fit, and function," says Sarah Ahmed, (opens in new tab) Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer of denim brand DL1961. "Denim adjusts to your body with wear, becoming unique to you over time. Exploring different fabrications to find what suits your needs is key." In short: The perfect pair of jeans is the pair you can forget you have on.
This is the tale of an indie-inspired denim brand turned lifestyle brand. Once customers fell in love with their super-soft, off-duty denim, it was full steam ahead. Created in L.A. with a range of modern fits, these '70s-influenced jeans developed a cult following. From the funky modern flares to color blocking washes, each piece has its own little story.
Born and bred in L.A., AGOLDE searched far and wide to bring their customers comfortable, flawlessly-aged, premium denim. All of their jeans have a relaxed style, perfect for your weekend wardrobe. Made with 100 percent cotton, each pair is under $200, ticking all of the right boxes. Go grab a pair (or two!).
Named after the Latin word for "love," AMO's denim ethos is simple: "Create jeans designed by women who get it." Made in Los Angeles, founders Kelly Urban and Misty Zollars founded the line after finding a lack of vintage-quality jeans that also fit effortlessly. Each and every season, the brand works alongside a charity of their choosing to help give back to the community.
Boyish Jeans are the perfect combination of your favorite vintage jeans, but with a modern twist. Their focus is on sustainable denim. One of Boyish's biggest contributions to reducing their carbon footprint? Using one-third of the amount of water normally used to produce a pair of jeans (did you known it takes about 1,800 gallons of water to make a single pair?). With their high-rise skinnies, distressed boyfriend styles, and classic cutoff shorts, they'll leave a great impression on both you and Mother Earth. 041b061a72