The 101 on fit for women’s jeans.
You make it to the dressing room, arm sore from carrying one-too-many jeans around the store while shopping. As you start trying one on after another, spinning around to see how it looks from the back, the doubts creep in.
Do these *really* fit me? Will they stretch? Should I go one size up or one size down? What if I love them and then I go home, cut the tags, wear them, and realize they don’t actually fit me that well? How baggy is TOO baggy for a new pair of jeans?
We’ve all been there. In that tiny room. With that seemingly massive mirror staring us down. Under those LED lights that highlight every bump and indent on our bodies. Wondering how the HECK we’re supposed to know if jeans actually fit.
That’s why we put together this guide filled with helpful tips and know-how on the way jeans should fit based on what they’re made out of — and specific red flags to look out for.
Bookmark this article to revisit the next time you’re on the hunt for a pair of jeans — and be sure to share with friends, too. Because everyone deserves to find perfect jeans that make them feel beautiful.
Okay, so how much will denim actually stretch?
Here’s the thing: all jeans, no matter what they’re made out of, will stretch to varying degrees over time. The million dollar question, though, is how much, which is a little bit more complicated to answer since it depends on several factors:
- How often you wear the jeans
- How often you wash the jeans (spoiler alert: less is more)
- The fabric they’re made out of
If your jeans are 100% cotton…
Compared to stretch jeans, jeans made with 100% cotton are more sturdy, rigid, and durable. They have the reputation for not molding and stretching to your body, which is true but not the full story. Because over time, 100% cotton jeans WILL stretch. And because cotton threads expand but don’t retract, you can’t really shrink them back.
If your jeans are a combo of cotton and stretch materials (think lycra, spandex, elastane)…
As the name suggests, stretch jeans will mold and stretch to your body, but in the long run, they’ll actually stretch less than 100% cotton jeans will (confusing, we know). Plus, unlike cotton, stretch materials can expand and then retract as well. So for these, it’s best not to rely on future stretch and instead buy new jeans that fit from the get-go.
8 ways to tell if your jeans fit properly when you try them on
01 Give the finger test a try
If you can fit two fingers between the front waistline and your stomach, you should be good to go. More than two fingers is a sign that the jeans maaaaay be too big, and just one finger indicates they may be too tight.
02 Take a seat to test the crotch area
You want to avoid bagginess or bunching — essentially any material that you can grab onto.
03 Make sure the fly isn’t pulling open
You don’t want any sign of straining here, nor along the inseam.
04 Watch out for wrinkling in both the front of your jeans
If you spot horizontal lines or wrinkles across the front hip and crotch area, that’s a sign of too tight jeans.
05 ...and back of the jeans
When it comes to the back, there will likely be some sign of wrinkles, but it should be minimal. Otherwise, that’s a sign of one of two things: 1) the waist is too loose, which causes sagging, which causes excess fabric to gather below your bum or 2) the jeans are too snug around the thigh area
07 Note if the back pockets are situated in the right area
Although styles vary, generally speaking they should be centered on your cheeks and not reaching down to the curve between your cheek and back thigh.
08Ask yourself if YOU feel beautiful and confident wearing the jeans
Because at the end of the day, personal preference is what matters more than any “rule.” And remember, although easier said than done, don’t be married to a specific number because sizing is so (read: SO) subjective. If you’re a 29 in one brand, that 100% doesn’t mean you’re a 29 in every brand.
Looking for a way to make the whole jean shopping process WAY easier? That’s where Revelle comes in. When you join — which, BTW, doesn’t cost you anything — we’ll ask you a few questions about your beautiful body. From there, we work our magic (and by magic, we mean technology) to build your personal store filled with super skinny jeans, straight leg, bootcut, mom jeans, and more. As you like (heart) and dislike (broken heart) jeans, we’ll get to know your tastes, preferences, and style even better so you can find your perfect pair with the perfect fit for your beautiful body shape.
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