Are skinny jeans over? And what do I wear, if they are?
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For the last two years, I’ve pretty much lived in skinny jeans.
I’m honestly not exaggerating about that: I mean, I’ve always been a big fan of denim (A big revelation for me was the moment I realised that, no matter how many dresses I own, or how much I like them, I still feel most comfortable in a great pair of jeans…), but, since Max came along, jeans have become something of a uniform . Well, they’re just so easy, aren’t they? And practical. And … kind of boring, really, when you end up wearing the same style over and over again: which is exactly what I’ve been doing, basically.
I’m not exaggerating about THAT either, by the way: because I struggle to find jeans I like and that fit me properly (Who could forget the great ‘ Petite Maternity Jeans’ saga of 2017, for instance? WHO, I ask you?) I’m currently the proud owner of:
* Two pairs of totally identical blue skinny jeans
* One pair of almost identical blue skinny jeans: by which I mean there are some subtle differences, but they’re SO subtle that you have to be looking really, really closely to see them – and, even then, you might struggle.
* One pair of very slightly different blue skinny jeans.
* Two pairs of identical black skinny jeans.
So, yeah, really breaking out of my comfort zone right now, aren’t I? Hey, I wonder why I’m not a top rated fashion blogger by now?
Here’s the thing, though: comfortable though I am in my skinny jeans rut, lately I’ve been hearing rumblings of discontent from the rest of the jeans-wearing public. Skinny jeans are OVER, the rumblings tell me. They’re, like, SO last decade. NO ONE is wearing skinny jeans any more. Now, these rumblings, they scare me. It’s not that I worry about being ‘on trend’ or anything like that, I hasten to add: it’s just… what on earth will I wear if skinnies suddenly disappear from the shelves? How will I dress myself without them? It’s a dilemma, for sure.
Happily, though, it’s a dilemma which the good people at Very.co.uk have stepped in to help solve, with a new denim collection which includes a number of alternatives to skinny jeans (Although also quite a few pairs of ACTUAL skinnies, too, which, PHEW.) So, let’s take a look at some of them, shall we?
3 Alternatives to Skinny Jeans
I really want to love mom jeans . I mean, I AM a mom. Er, a mum. These should be literally made for me, right? Wrong. Mom jeans are NOT literally made for me, folks. In fact, while mom jeans like to lure you in with the name, making you think they’re just your average pair of jeans, made for your average, jeans-wearing person, the truth is that mom jeans are actually made for cool girls and, well, teenagers: because they’re the only people who can pull them off – which is ironic, really, because the name comes from the fact that this style has spent the last twenty years or so being deeply unfashionable, before suddenly becoming sought-after again.
So, they’re jeans that only moms would wear, but, actually, moms-like-me would never wear them, because we’re just not cool enough. Are you following this? Because I really hope SOMEONE is…
OK, OK, I’m obviously speaking purely for myself here: I’ve seen plenty of women who look good in mom jeans: actual ‘moms’ included. I’m just not one of them, unfortunately, and find that the loose fit and high waists that make this style so comfortable, do me no favours at all, and just leave me feeling even frumpier than I would normally. So, as far as I’m concerned, my skinny jeans are safe from this style.
Mom jeans are, however, one of the more popular alternatives to skinny jeans right now, so, if you do want to wear them, the key to styling mom jeans is to pair them with something fitted on the top half (One thing high waisted jeans are brilliant for is emphasising the waist, so you may as well make the most of it…), and pay close attention to the length: these jeans really have to hit above the ankle to work – any longer and they really will look like 90s throwbacks.
OK, now we’re talking. I’m sure we’re all familiar with the wonder that is cigarette trousers, so no one will be remotely surprised to hear that cigarette jeans are basically the same thing, but in denim form.
With a straight cut and a cropped/ankle length fit, these eliminate the main issues I have with skinny jeans (The skintight fit, the fact that they’re always way too long on me…), but keep everything I like about them in terms of the fitted shape and versatility. While I’m not quite ready to part with my skinnies altogether, I have to admit, I have been getting a bit tired of the ‘sprayed-on’ look that seems to be a prerequisite these days. Mom jeans and the like are still a step too far in the other direction for me, so I’m thinking cigarette jeans could be a good halfway house for now. The look isn’t a million miles away from the one you get from skinnies (Which means you can style these similarly, without having to think too much about it, or change the rest of your wardrobe to fit your new denim style), but it’s just a little bit fresher – and, who knows, maybe a bit more comfortable, too.
STRAIGHT LEG JEANS
On paper, straight leg jeans sound pretty similar to the cigarette jeans mentioned above: in practice, however, straight jeans tend to have a wider leg and looser fit, which makes them a step up from cigarette jeans, while still not quite as baggy as mom or girlfriend jeans. And, again, I really hope you’re following this, because there will be a quiz at the end…
As you can see from the image above, the term ‘straight leg’ can cover quite a range of different styles, from slim crops to much wider legs. Overall, though, this is a style that will probably be reasonably familiar to those of us who grew up in the 90s, and for whom they were basically the only style of jeans available. I used to wear mine with a low-cut bodysuit, because, OBVIOUSLY, but although I’d still recommend something either fitted or tucked-in (These would look a bit shapeless with something long and baggy over the top, for instance…), the good news is that by styling your jeans with something like trainers and a shirt, for instance, you can still keep the look up-to-date.
There are, of course, tons of other styles around at the moment which could make good alternatives to skinny jeans (Don’t even get me started on boyfriend/girlfriend jeans, both of which fall into the, “I want to love them, but they make me look like I’m literally wearing someone else’s clothes…” category…), so tell me: which one’s your favourite: or are you happily sticking to skinnies?