If you’re shopping for a new pair of jeans, it can actually end up being a bit of a headache. The thing with denim, and jeans in particular, is that it most certainly does not follow a ‘one size fits most’ policy. Shopping for jeans is kind of personal, because it’s all about your own specific dimensions
In this sense, it’s more about body shape and proportions than it is about sizing. And this is the one thing that a lot of women forget, or simply don’t know when shopping for a pair of jeans. Be honest, do you really know what your body shape is, and not just your size?
image source: Fashion Me Now
For example, do you know how to find jeans to suit your body type, or the length or style of rise you might need?
The first piece of advice we can give you when it comes to shopping for the ultimate pair of jeans is to arm yourself with your correct measurements. Sure, you could just pull a pair of jeans off the rack, slip them on and hope the best, but if you have a better idea of your specific sizing, you stand a far better chance of buying the perfect pair of jeans.
Take Your Measurements
You can take your measurements in a couple of different ways. The measurements you generally need for jeans are your waist size, and your inseam size. But it’s a good idea to also measure the rise that you need (this is the length of the jeans, from the crotch right up to the waistband).
If you have the perfect pair of jeans at home, a pair you always gravitate towards that seem to fit like a second skin, then this is great! You can use this item of clothing to get your measurements. If not, just follow the same steps by measuring yourself, rather than the garment.
image source: Pinterest
How to Measure for Jeans
1) Measure the Rise: Start by hanging up the pair of jeans with a clothes hanger, and then take a flexible tape measure and measure from the waistband down to the crotch seam. This will give you the rise measurement, and since you are measuring your favourite pair of jeans – you can be pretty sure that this is the type of rise that you like.
2) Measure the Inseam: The next thing to measure is the inseam length, so take the tape measure, and measure down from the crotch seam to the hem on the inside of the leg. By using this method, you are effectively taking your existing pair of jeans as a template to work off when searching for a new pair that fits perfectly.
3) Measure the Waist: To measure your waist, place the flexible tape measure a couple of inches below your belly button, or at the widest part around your midriff. Measure all the way around a perfect circle, imagining that this is where the waistline of your jeans would be when wearing them. This gives you a baseline measurement to work off when shopping for a pair of great fitting jeans.
Now that you’re armed with your own personal measurements, it’s time to start shopping for that perfect pair of jeans. But with so many different shapes, styles and varieties, this in itself can be a minefield. Take a look at the different styles of jeans now, so you can begin to educate yourself on what size might fit you best, and complement your body shape.
image source: Couture Girl
Some Common Types of Jeans
● Jeggings – these are usually described as a cross between a pair of jeans and a pair of leggings, and they are fantastic if your main aim is comfort and a tight fit. They are often super stretchy, hugging the body for a tight fit without being restrictive.
● Skinny or Super Skinny – these are a style of form fitting jeans, often giving the appearance (but not necessarily the feel) of being super tight. They look similar to Jeggings, but are usually regarded as being a true pair of jeans, since they often feature pockets and buttons. They are fitted at the ankle, making them great for accentuating long, lean legs.
● Straight Leg Jeans – this is a pretty enduring style of jeans that never really seems to go out of fashion. Straight leg jeans are essentially just that; jeans with a straight leg that does not change in width down the entire length of the leg. This generally means that they fit more snugly around the thighs than they do around the calves and ankles.
● Slim Leg Jeans– this style of jeans kind of bridges the gap between straight leg jeans and skinny jeans, and is essentially a cross between the two. They are generally fitted over the hips and thighs, and cut a clean line down to the hem, just like a pair of straight leg jeans.
● Boot Cut Jeans – this style of jeans are slightly tapered in the thigh area and then widen from the knee down to the hem. The best way to think of boot cut jeans is to imagine that they have been styled to accommodate a pair of boots, requiring extra width in the calf and ankle areas.
● Flared Jeans - flared jeans are generally tight fitting in the thigh and upper leg area, with the bottom half flaring out, similar to boot cut jeans. The level of flair can vary with modern styles. They can sometimes be known as bell bottom jeans, but this style generally has a very exaggerated flare, more akin to the styles worn by hippies in the 1960s and 70s.
● Wide Leg Jeans – this style of jeans has a wide circumference all the way down the length of the leg. For this reason, they can also be referred to as baggy fit or loose fit jeans - but it has to be noted that different styles sometimes have a tighter circumference around the ankle.
image source: wutisit
When we refer to the ‘rise’ of a pair of jeans, we are talking about the measurement from the scene of the crotch, up to the top of the waistband. It basically refers to how the jeans sit on the waist. Generally, with women’s jeans you will have a choice of three, or possibly four different rise sizes.
● High-rise Jeans – these can sometimes be referred to as high-waisted jeans, and are generally worn up to or just above the belly button.
● Medium or Mid-rise Jeans – this style tends to skim the belly button, or sit up to an inch below. This style is sometimes referred to as regular rise jeans.
● Low-rise Jeans - these types of jeans sit low on the waist, usually around 3 inches below the navel
● Super Low-rise Jeans - this can vary according to style (and, of course, your body shape), however as a general rule of thumb, super low rise jeans tend to sit about 5 inches below the navel
What Style of Jeans Should I Buy?
Okay, so we’ve taken a look at the different types of jeans, as well as the different rises available. If you’ve taken your measurements, then you have a rough idea of the size of jeans you’re going for, which can also help with the shape (especially when it comes to choosing the style of rise).
image source: YouTube
But if you’re looking for that super, comfortable pair of jeans that fits you like a second skin, then this is really going to depend on your body shape. Take a look at the image above, and see which one most closely resembles your own silhouette.
Jeans for Hourglass Shapes
If you class yourself as being curvy, or having an hourglass figure, it’s generally said that this particular body type can get away with most styles of jeans. So, if you’re lucky enough to be an hourglass shape, then you could opt for multiple different styles of jeans. Here’s one you can look out for:
image source: Red Reiding Hood
Skinny Jeans: these will look flattering on an hourglass shape and are great worn with a tight-fitting tank top and a pair of high heels to elongate your legs, and really accentuate that hourglass figure. Opt for a high-waisted variety if you want to accentuate a slim waist.
Jeans for Rounded or 'Apple' Shapes
If you’re a rounded shape (sometimes known as an ‘apple’ shape), then your middle will be the widest part. For this reason, it’s a good idea to opt for high-rise jeans in stretch denim, to give you comfort but also help to create the illusion of a slimmer waist. Here’s a style to look out for:
image source: HawtCelebs
Boot Cut Jeans: having a wider fit at the bottom of the jeans will help to balance out your hips, keeping your legs in proportion. If you want to balance out the top half of your body, then you could opt for a waist cincher and a cute cardigan with ruffles shoulders to keep everything in proportion.
Jeans for Straight or ‘Box’ Shapes
Generally, if you describe yourself as having a box -shaped body, this means you go straight up and down, without any hint of an hourglass figure and your hips and waist will be of a similar size. Since we want to create an hourglass figure wherever possible, opt for the following:
image source: Pinterest
High-rise Jeans: these are a great idea for box-shaped torsos because they tend to cinch you in at the waist, contouring your body and making it appear as if your waist is drawn in where you want it to be. Opt for a boot cut if you want to, but try to balance your top half if you have narrow shoulders.
Jeans for Triangle or ‘Pear’ Shapes
If you’re a pear shape, this means that you are bottom-heavy, so your hips will generally be wider than your shoulders. For this reason, try to opt for jeans in a dark denim with large back pockets – which will help to make your butt look smaller. Here’s a good style to try:
Image source: DenimBlog
Mid-rise Straight-leg Jeans: These are a perfect fit for pear shapes, because the mid-rise creates a more defined waistline, while the straight leg hugs the silhouette, without being bulky. This creates a visual line down the outline of the body, skimming down the hips without adding any bulk around the hip and thigh area.
Some Final Tips on Finding the Perfect Jeans
Even though there are suggestions for buying jeans according to your body shape (as outlined above) - what style you go for is ultimately up to you. Don't let the 'rules' of fashion dictate your style completely. There's no reason an 'apple' shape can't rock a pair of skinnies, if that's what you want to do!
Just remember, when buying jeans (particularly online) it's always smart to have your measurements handy. And if you're still in doubt - order two sizes and see which one fits you better. Just use the above tips as a rough guide for what styles of jeans will suit your body shape, and feel free to ignore these general rules completely if that's what you want to do. Your style is up to you!
Do you have any tips for finding the perfect pair of jeans? We'd love to hear about it - so please feel free to share it with us in the comments section below.