The ultimate fashion dilemma that is akin to searching for the Holy Grail. We are of course referring to finding the perfect pair of jeans. In a season where denim is one of the biggest trends and therefore ubiquitous, the pressure to bag the perfect pair is high. This is one search - 5 hours, 10 shops and 50 pairs of jeans later - that can lead to intense frustration. One of the myths to discard is the idea that there is a perfect pair of jeans. No such thing exists. There is however the perfect pair of jeans for you. Regardless of what is in or out of fashion, the perfect pair of jeans is not necessarily the latest launch from a hyped up LA brand. The perfect pair of jeans will always be the one that compliments your body shape. So before going on the hunt for that elusive pair of jeans, it’s important to have a reality check with yourself. Despite the American writer Gail Rubin Bereny famously saying, “Above all, remember that the most important thing you can take anywhere is not a Gucci bag or French-cut jeans; it's an open mind”, if you are open-minded to Kate Moss-style skinnies but your body shape is closer to Beyonce’s, then you will either come home empty handed or with very ill fitting jeans. We asked Sam Remer, founder of ilovejeans.com, stylist and denim expert, to give us her tips on the best way to go about buying the perfect jeans. Follow her advice and your shopping nightmare will become an absolute pleasure – and you’ll end up with the jeans you’ve been searching for all your life.
Choose a leg style that will suit your body shape as this will even out proportions and balance everything out.
If you are an ‘Apple’ shape, go for straight leg, skinny (not too skinny) and crop styles. If you are fuller figured, curvy, hourglass or ‘Pear’ shaped, boot cut, wide leg, flares, boyfriend styles are more suitable. If you are petite, go for skinny, straight leg, crop styles. If you are fortunate enough to be long and leggy, the world is our oyster as you can just about carry off all leg shapes.
The "rise" of a jean is determined by the distance between the crotch and the waist. Knowing which body type you are will be your guide to the correct rise for you.
Leggy and petite girls can carry off a low rise jean well. Low rise measures 7.5 inches or under. The waist band usually sits two or more inches lower than the navel Pear shape, hourglass, fuller figure, long & leggy and apple can wear a mid rise jean. Mid rise measures eight to nine inches. The waistband sits just below the navel. Pear shape, hourglass and long and leggy can carry off the higher rise look. High rise measures 9.5 to as high as 12 inches. The waistband sits either on or above the navel.
The waistband is always an important factor when shopping for your shape. Most pear shape and hourglass women have a terrible time with getting jeans to fit around the hips, so they go up a size and end up with a gape at the back of the waist.
Here are three ways to get round the gape.
Go for wider waistband which sits on your hips with a higher back rise.
A higher waist pair of jean will solve the gape problem and will give a streamline silhouette to your shape.
Try ‘figure fixing’ jeans. These are specifically created for women who have a smaller middle versus a bigger hip and thigh area. Levis Curve Id offers four fits depending on how curvy you are. J Brand’s Maria - Clocker collection gives more room through the high waist.
Always take a selection of shoes with different heels to determine when you will wear your new jeans. Heels elongate the leg and gives confidence when wearing great fitting jeans.
Depending on the brand of jean they may have a selection of leg lengths. Choose your nearest length. Don’t rule out a style just on leg length as it may be a great fit and easy to shorten.
Which size? This can be tricky as most denim brands tend to work to their own sizing. Jeans from the US tend to work on vanity sizing to make the customer feels great about buying a smaller size. If you’re trying on jeans in a boutique or department store be sure to ask the sales assistant if the brand runs true to size. Try on the same style in two sizes to check the fit.
By checking the Lycra content on the label inside the jean you will get a good idea if the jean will stretch when worn. A higher Lycra content will stretch at least one size bigger, so take the smaller size. Nothing is worse than parting with your hard earned cash on a pair of jeans that goes baggy after one wear so it’s important to move around the fitting room and do some denim aerobics to ensure a close fit. Always sit down in the jeans to make sure the back rise doesn’t reveal too much. If both sizes of your chosen jeans don’t fit well, the style may not suit your body shape. Often we blame our size when the answer could be ‘It’s just the wrong style for my shape’.
Buying jeans online has never been easier a Specialist denim boutiques Donna Ida offer an excellent online presence. A good e-tailer will give size & fit notes on the jean so you will know if the jean is true to size or whether it is necessary to go down a size etc. If unsure call or email the e-tailer and ask. For those who prefer to shop off line, as a stylist & denim expert I recommend Donna Ida , simply because they understand the needs of different body shapes and have a great knowledge of the brands they are selling.
By Funmi Fetto via handbag.com