How to Buy Jeans that Flatter

Getting a perfect pair of jeans takes a lot of trial and error. Eventually, you know your body and what styles, colors and brands work best. But what are the key decisions to make when choosing the right jeans for your body? I asked a few fashion experts on the most universally flattering jeans for women. Here’s my summary.

Dark Denim

According to Megan Oxland, fashion PR pro, one way to make sure your Jean DNA is flattering is by choosing a dark wash… “everyone knows the darker the color the more slimming you appear and that definitely holds true for jeans as well.  Avenue has totally revamped their denim line making a usually torturous shopping event such as buying denim, no longer a scary thought, but yet an easy way to figure out your Jean DNA.”

Avenue Plus Size Santa Fe Bootcut Jean
Avenue Plus Size Santa Fe Bootcut Jean
Price: $29.99

This bootcut jean by Avenue is the perfect way  to look slim – the bootcut bottom helps balance out the leg by having a slight wider bottom than a typical skinny jean and the black color helps keep a casual jean look polished.

Balanced Fit

One of the best ways to find flattering jeans is to start with a visually balanced silhouette, suggests Constance Dunn of PracticalGlamour.org. “Whether you feel your legs are skinny, heavy or just right, the goal is to wear jeans that offer a visually balanced leg silhouette. Your jean selection can help or hinder you in this pursuit. The most common imbalance in a woman’s legs is a disproportion above the knee versus below the knee. Here a woman’s upper leg (thighs) looks thick in comparison to her lower legs (calves). That said, the skinny jean trend is one of the more hideous jokes the fashion industry has played on contemporary womankind. I suggest you pass on this trend, even if you are 5’10” and weight 110 pounds”, says Constance. What kind of fit is universally flattering? Constance sees a straight-leg jean with a mid-rise waist the most universally flattering jean style for women.

Boring perhaps, but true. Always begin with this silhouette when shopping. Alternatively, Mom jeans are distinguished by a high-rise waist, while low-rise jeans are responsible for muffin tops everywhere and will visually shorten your leg span. Few of us want our legs to look shorter.

It’s important to be objective rather than critical when trying on jeans and look at all angles. Constance insists you ask yourself first, “Do these jeans give my body a pleasing proportion?” Making the judgment call on how balanced is your jean fit is not always easy. One tool that can and is amazingly easy to use is the Levi’s Curve ID jeans tool. It’s a quick online diagnostic that recommends jeans based on your body shape, not size.

Levi's Women's 512 Bootcut Jeans White 6
Levi’s Women’s 512 Bootcut Jeans White 6
Price: $54.0
Cool and comfortable, these 512 Bootcut Jeans from Levi’s will always be in fashion. These ultra-stylish jeans feature the popular bootcut and decorative stitching on the back pockets that you will love. Whether you’re heading in for casual day at the office or out for a night on the town, these jeans are perfect for the occasion.

The Right Rise for the Right Waist

This partially goes along with the right proportion and balanced fit. Wearing correct rise for your body type will make a big difference in how you look and what you can wear with the jeans. Doris Poser (Alwaysinstyle.com), author of 7 bestselling books on fashion, image and style, makes the following recommendations for selecting the right waist of your jeans:

  • “If choosing low rise be sure that the waist is at the hip bone of slightly above.  An alternative is the higher rise that comes between the hip bone and waist. The traditional styles that are at the waist are another option.”
  • “If your bodyline is more curved, the higher waist allows for a smoother fit on the curved hipline. The traditional waists may have to be taken in at the waist to fit the defined waist lines.”
  • “Those with straight bodyline (little or no waist emphasis) may find the lower rise and mid rise best.”

Boom Boom Jeans - Cropped Belted Trousers
Boom Boom Jeans – Cropped Belted Trousers from Torrid

Lightweight Denim

While heavier jeans may still look flattering in a darker wash and the right proportion to your body, choosing a lighter fabric weight will make you appear slimmer. According to Constance Dunn of PracticalGlamour.org: “In terms of fabric weight, select the most lightweight denim for your needs because the last thing you want to do is add visual bulk to your body.”

Lightweight denim is often represented in wider length varieties, such as cropped or cargo styles. Doris Poser warns to watch the pockets on these jean lengths: “Be careful where the pockets are placed avoiding areas that do not need to be emphasized.”

DARK BLUE DENIM BLEACH FADED CROPPED JEANS

Dark Blue Denim Bleach Faded Cropped Jeans from AmiClubWear

Shop Jeans:

Washed Jeans

Washed Jeans

$47.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Cotton, Size: "S: Waist:27inch, Hips:34-35inch, Waist to Crotch:8.3inch, Thigh:20.5inch, Total Length:39... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Boot-Cut Jeans

Boot-Cut Jeans

$44.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist: 25-26inch, Hips: 35-36inch, Total Length: 41inch, Hem Width: 8inch, M Waist: 27... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Skinny Jeans

Skinny Jeans

$38.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist:24-25 inch / Hips:34-35 inch / Total Length:37 inch / Sided Bottom Width:5.5 inc... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Wrangler Jeans - Womens Q-Baby Ultimate Riding Tuff Buck - 32", 34", 36", 38"

Wrangler Jeans - Womens Q-Baby Ultimate Riding Tuff Buck - 32", 34", 36", 38"

$40.99

Wrangler Ultimate Riding Jeans for the cowgirl who deserves the best. Sanctioned by the American Quarter Horse Association AQHA. 9 3/8" front waist rise, 14 ... [Read more]

Store:

Brand: Wrangler

Skinny Jeans

Skinny Jeans

$46.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist: 24-25inch, Hips: 35-36inch, Total Length: 99cm, Hem Width: 15cm, M Waist: 26-27... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Elastic-Waist Skinny Jeans

Elastic-Waist Skinny Jeans

$43.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist:24-25inch Hips:34-35inch Total Length:37inch Bottom Width:5.5inch M Waist:26-27i... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Womens Ruby Rd. Classic Flat Front Elastic Jeans 18W, BLACK

Womens Ruby Rd. Classic Flat Front Elastic Jeans 18W, BLACK

$48.00  $21.99

Short length classic flat front elastic back jeans with front pockets. 52% Ramie, 46% Cotton, 2% Spandex. Machine wash cold. Inseam approximately 28 1/2 [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Ruby Rd.

Womens Petite Lee Basic Elastic Waist Jeans-Petite 16W Petite, Black

Womens Petite Lee Basic Elastic Waist Jeans-Petite 16W Petite, Black

$56.00  $34.99

Womens Lee(R) elastic waist jeans have a relaxed fit that sit at the waist. They have a tapered leg and zip-fly with a button closure. 99% Cotton, 1% Spandex. Mac... [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Lee

Skinny Jeans

Skinny Jeans

$46.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist:25-26inch, Hips:35-36inch, Total Length:38inch, Bottom:5.5inch, M Waist:27-28inc... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Lee Side Elastic Denim Jeans - Short Length 14 Short, Pepper Stone

Lee Side Elastic Denim Jeans - Short Length 14 Short, Pepper Stone

$52.00  $32.99

These short length Lee(R) side elastic jeans feature belt loops with zip/button front and front pockets-no rear pockets. 99% Cotton, 1% Spandex. Machine wash. Tum... [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Lee

Petite Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda Average Jeans 4P, Black

Petite Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda Average Jeans 4P, Black

$40.00  $24.99

Petite Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda average length black jeans feature five pockets, a tapered leg, and stretch material. 73% Cotton, 26% Polyester, 1% Spandex. Machi... [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Gloria Vanderbilt

Washed Jeans

Washed Jeans

$44.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist: 25-26inch, Hips: 35-36inch, Total Length: 41.5inch, Hem Width: 9.5inch, M Waist... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Washed Boot-Cut Jeans

Washed Boot-Cut Jeans

$44.90  $42.66

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Stretch Denim, Size: S Low Waist:26-27 inch, General Waist:24-25 inch, Hips:34-35 inch, Total Length:39 inch,... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Womens Architect 5 Pocket Denim Jeans 14W, Blue Black Carbon Medium Rinse

Womens Architect 5 Pocket Denim Jeans 14W, Blue Black Carbon Medium Rinse

$44.00  $16.99

Effortless 5 Pocket denim jean, made to fit comfortably and flatter every figure. 30 inseam. 78% Cotton, 20% Polyester, 2% Spandex. Machine wash cold. [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Architect

Womens Lee Basic Elastic Waist Jeans - Medium 24W, Pepper Stone

Womens Lee Basic Elastic Waist Jeans - Medium 24W, Pepper Stone

$56.00  $34.99

Womens Lee(R) elastic waist jeans have a relaxed fit that sit at the waist. They have a tapered leg and zip-fly with a button closure. 99% Cotton, 1% Spandex. Mac... [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Lee

Elastic-Waist Straight-Cut Jeans

Elastic-Waist Straight-Cut Jeans

$44.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue / Green, Materials: Stretch Denim and Twill, Size: M Waist: 29-30 inch, Hips: 39-40 inch, Total Length: 39 inch, Bottom: ... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Studded-Pocket Slim-Cut Jeans

Studded-Pocket Slim-Cut Jeans

$45.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Black, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist:23-24inch Hips:33-34inch Total Length:40inch Bottom Width:5.5inch M Waist:25-26... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Brushed Fleece-Lining Elastic-Waist Skinny Jeans

Brushed Fleece-Lining Elastic-Waist Skinny Jeans

$41.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Inner Bristles Stretch Denim, Size: M Waist:25-26 inch, Hips:35-36 inch, Total Length:37.5 inch, Sided Bottom... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Boot-Cut Jeans

Boot-Cut Jeans

$44.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist: 25-26inch, Hips: 35-36inch, Total Length: 39inch, Hem Width: 8inch, M Waist: 27... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Sequined Bow-Accent Unwashed Jeans

Sequined Bow-Accent Unwashed Jeans

$43.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Black / Red, Materials: Stretch Denim, Size: XL Waist: 28-29 inches Hips: 38-39 inches Length: 41 inches Hem Width: 6 inches 2... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Slim-Fit Washed Jeans

Slim-Fit Washed Jeans

$39.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Denim, Size: XL Waist:28-29 inch / Hips:38-39 inch / Total Length:36.5 inch / Sided Bottom Width:5 inch / 2L ... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Petites Alfred Dunner Classics Denim Jean Pants 16P, Denim

Petites Alfred Dunner Classics Denim Jean Pants 16P, Denim

$40.00  $29.99

Petites Alfred Dunner Classics average length denim pants with slant pockets and a 28.5 inch inseam. 97% Cotton, 3% Spandex. Machine wash. Tumble dry. [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Alfred Dunner

Womens Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda Jeans - Black 16W, Black

Womens Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda Jeans - Black 16W, Black

$44.00  $28.99

Gloria Vanderbilt straight jeans with belt loops, a zipper and button closure, front and back pockets, and a 28 inch inseam. 98% Cotton, 2% Spandex. Machine wash.... [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Gloria Vanderbilt

Washed Straight-Cut Jeans

Washed Straight-Cut Jeans

$44.90  $42.66

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist:23-24 inch / Hips:33-34 inch / Total Length:39 inch / Sided Bottom Width:6 inch ... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Boot-Cut Jeans

Boot-Cut Jeans

$47.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist: 24-25inch, Hips: 34-35inch, Total Length: 101cm, Hem Width: 21.5cm, M Waist: 26... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Washed Straight-Cut Jeans

Washed Straight-Cut Jeans

$44.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Stretch Denim, Size: M Waist: 26-27 inches / Hips: 36-37 inches / Total Length: 39 inches / Bottom Width: 5.5... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Womens Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda Jeans - Black 22W, Black

Womens Gloria Vanderbilt Amanda Jeans - Black 22W, Black

$44.00  $28.99

Gloria Vanderbilt straight jeans with belt loops, a zipper and button closure, front and back pockets, and a 28 inch inseam. 98% Cotton, 2% Spandex. Machine wash.... [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Gloria Vanderbilt

Womens Bandolino Mandie Average Jeans - Black 18W, Saturated Black

Womens Bandolino Mandie Average Jeans - Black 18W, Saturated Black

$54.00  $32.99

These Womens Bandolino Mandie average length stretch jeans have five pockets and a 30 inch inseam. 72% Cotton, 26% Polyester, 2% Spandex. Machine wash. Tumble dry. [Read more]

Store: Boscov's Department Stores

Brand: Bandolino

Cropped Jeans

Cropped Jeans

$43.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Denim, Size: S Waist: 24-25inch, Hips: 34-35inch, Total Length: 10.5inch, Bottom Width: 11inch, M Waist: 26-2... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Washed Jeans

Washed Jeans

$44.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: S Waist: 24-25inch, Hips: 34-35inch, Total Length: 101cm, Hem Width: 21cm, M Waist: 26-2... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Straight-Cut Jeans

Straight-Cut Jeans

$47.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Denim, Size: S, M, L, 2L, 3L, 4L, 5L, 6L, 7L S: Waist 27 inch, Hip 34-35 inch, Rise 17 cm, Thigh50 cm, Total ... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Plus Size Levi's Defined Waist Bootcut Jeans, Women's, Size: 16W AV/REG, Blue

Plus Size Levi's Defined Waist Bootcut Jeans, Women's, Size: 16W AV/REG, Blue

$54.50  $39.99

Watch the product video here. Contoured waistband Stretchy denim construction 5-pocket Fit & Sizing Short: 30-in. inseam Regular: 32-in. inseam High rise sits... [Read more]

Store: Kohls Department Stores Inc

Brand: Levi's

Women's Levi's 512 Perfectly Slimming Bootcut Jeans, Size: 4/27 Avg, Med Blue

Women's Levi's 512 Perfectly Slimming Bootcut Jeans, Size: 4/27 Avg, Med Blue

$54.50  $36.99

These women's pair of Levi's jeans hold a figure-enhancing secret: A tummy slimming panel through our innovative pocket design that creates an all over smooth sha... [Read more]

Store: Kohls Department Stores Inc

Brand: Levi's

Skinny Jeans

Skinny Jeans

$43.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Black, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: XL Waist: 31-32inch, Hips: 41-42inch, Total Length: 41inch, Bottom Width: 8.5inch, 2L W... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Washed Skinny Jeans

Washed Skinny Jeans

$42.90

Brand from Taiwan: RingBear. Color: Blue, Materials: Spandex Denim, Size: M Waist:25-26 inch / Hips:35-36 inch / Total Length:39.5 inch / Sided Bottom Width:5 inc... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: RingBear

Distressed Skinny Jeans

Distressed Skinny Jeans

$32.90

Brand from China: Colorful Shop. Color: Blue, Materials: Cotton, Size: 26: Pants Length: 97cm, Waist: 68cm, Thigh: 40cm, Leg Opening: 22cm, 27: Pants Length: 97cm... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: Colorful Shop

Washed Distressed Skinny Jeans

Washed Distressed Skinny Jeans

$29.90  $28.41

Brand from China: Romantica. Color: Blue, Materials: Denim - Cotton Blend, Size: 26: Waist: 56cm, Hips: 70cm, Thigh: 38cm, Pants Length: 92cm, 27: Waist: 59cm, Hi... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: Romantica

Distressed Skinny Jeans

Distressed Skinny Jeans

$41.90  $12.57

Brand from China: MRCYC. Color: Blue, Materials: Cotton, Size: M: Waist: 70-73cm, L: Waist: 73-77cm, XL: Waist: 77-80cm, XXL: Waist: 80-83cm, Care: Hand Wash, Mac... [Read more]

Store: YesStyle.com

Brand: Mrcyc

%d bloggers like this: