How to Find the Best Jeans for Every Body Type
By: The Making it in Manhattan Staff
There's no denying that shopping for denim is one of the most dreaded past-times. With so many different cuts, styles, and washes out there- the whole process can be extremely overwhelming. But, with that being said, here at Making it in Manhattan, we do understand the power of a really good pair of denim. Not only can the right pair of baby blues instantly uplift your spirit and give you confidence, but it can also make you feel like you can handle just about anything that comes your way. So, in an effort to help you find that magical pair of jeans, I partner with a few fashion bloggers to bring you the perfect styles for just about every body type. From curvy and petite, to tall and thin, below, the ultimate guide to the best jeans for every body type- enjoy!
Tall & Thin
Personally, I’ve always struggled with denim. Growing up, I was always taller than most of my classmates and found shopping for jeans one of the most painful past-times. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’ve always been open to trying out the latest fashion trends (hello dresses over pants & mixing prints), but, for me, I could never find jeans that were actually long enough. For years I’ve cringed at the sight of what I call the “awkward gap,” the area between the end of your jeans and the top of your ankle. Especially when I was younger, 5th grade to be exact, and didn’t own cute socks. Finally, once I hit freshman year of college though, I stopped growing and decided to try and find jeans that really did fit me. Until then, I sort of avoided denim at all costs.
Currently, I stand at approximately 5’9” and have very long legs and a medium sized torso. So, for all of my tall ladies out there, I recommend two different styles- cropped flares and high waisted boyfriend jeans. Why you ask? Cropped flares are great because they are, well, intentionally cropped! No awkward gap! Instead they sit maybe three inches above your ankle and are perfect when you have a new pair of shoes you want to show off. Pictured here, I’m wearing vintage 505 Levi’s aka high waisted boyfriend jeans. A high waisted style is great because it lets you show off your waist, while the boyfriend cut gives more room for your legs. I usually cuff the ankle once, sometimes twice, always avoiding that awkward gap.
Curvy & Petite
Hey guys! I’m Audree - a NYC-based fashion stylist, consultant, and the blogger behind Simply Audree Kate. I’ve always had trouble finding jeans that fit me; I’m 5’3” and really curvy. Trying to find a pair of jeans that would fit over my thighs and butt, but also be small enough for my waist was nearly impossible. I have found that the best types of jeans for my body type are high-waisted and a tailored or cropped leg. A high-waisted pant works well with my body since my legs are really short, so they elongate my body. I opt for a pant that hits right at my ankles or right above so they don’t overpower my frame. If the pant is too cropped, my legs look even shorter and off balanced with my hips. If the pants are too flared or long, it draws all of the attention to my widest parts - my hips and the flares that are even too long with my platform heels. If you’re also a short, curvy girl, my go-to denim brands are: Levi’s, Express, Gap and Old Navy.
I just got these patchwork jeans from True Religion and they’re high waisted and cropped! They’re perfect for dressing up or dressing down, and work perfectly with a matching denim shirt. I love how these pants hug my curves but also how slimming the cropped straight leg is.
Tall & Curvy
Hey y’all! Chelsea from Chelsea as of Late here. I’m a Caribbean transplant publicist and style blogger now based in NYC. Growing up I was one long + lean child so denim shopping was never too hard for me or my parents. Fast forward to moving stateside and one-too-many Frappuccinos later (I legit had one a day for like a year!) and suddenly I have hips, thighs and a butt that were never there before! Level of complication when denim shopping: +1.
I’ve experimented with just about every trend, style and cut there is when it comes to jeans and have landed on “Mom Jeans” as a current fave with potential to be a forever fave. They work for my body type - I’m 5’6 btw - because they hug all my curves in the right places while still giving me enough room to feel comfortable and play around in. It’s as if skinny jeans and boyfriend jeans had a high-waisted love child that slides right up and let’s you live your best life. The trick to great mom jeans is to pick the right length - too long and you just might feel like a real (80’s) mom but too short and you’re suddenly wearing denim capris - and not the cool kind! My rule of thumb is to look ones that hit me right above my ankle - like the ones I’m wearing here! I was lucky enough to have thrifted these bad boys (I know, how can anyone pass on cool mom jeans?!) but have found a similar pair from Asos for you all here and here.
Hourglass & Tall
Hey sweet friends! Emily here from Musings of Glitter over in Nashville. Where are my tall gals at?! This one's for you. I’m 5’11 and hate jean shopping with a passion. Either the legs are too short, the waist is too big, or they sit too low and I feel like I can't bend over. I’ve spent YEARS trying to find the right cut and shape for my body. For reference - I'm fairly hourglass. I've got a smaller waist in comparison to my chest and hips, so finding jeans has always been a nightmare.
But I finally figured out what works for my body type - praises! For me, I always reach for a dark wash, high rise pair of skinnies with a little bit of stretch. I love a good dark wash because it slims everything down a little bit - making my hips look smaller. And I'm all about high rise because it shows off my waistline (which is the thinner part of my body) and I don't have to worry about bending over at work. High rise keeps me covered and comfortable! I also like a little stretch in my jeans because I work with kids! I'm constantly running around and hanging out on the floor, so they have to be comfy. Now, the problem of where to find these magic jeans?
I finally found my perfect pair over at Express! I have several pairs of their High Waisted Jean Leggings - and honestly, all of their high waist jeans fit me perfectly. They're available in a variety of styles, cuts and washes along AND they're available in long (which is a necessity for us skyscrapers). They never fail! I wear mine all throughout the year.
White Denim for the Mom on the Go
Because you deserve your own category ladies!
Hi Everyone! I am Jenn, The Body Type Stylist. I am a Personal Stylist in the Phoenix area and I love to share fashion for your body type on my blog. Finding the perfect white jean hasn't been easy! They've been either too thin and show my butt, too low and show my butt or just not the right fit. Then I found these white Ami release hem pair from NYDJ and have been wearing them weekly ever since. (I secretly want them to come out with the same pair in black).