Mens Jeans, A Guide To The New Styles
How To Shop For Mens Jeans
So you want to go buy a new pair of blue jeans. Sounds simple, right? Wrong. Try it. You'll quickly be confronted with a barrage of choices that go far beyond size and color for mens jeans. What fit do you want? What rise? What cut? How many belt loops? Plain or embroidered pockets?
You may even be faced with terms you're not familiar with. What is "wash", for example? What is "distressing"? Why would anyone want distressed clothing? This article will explain these different choices of mens jeans available to you, define some of the terms you may not be familiar with, and offer some fashion tips on what kind of jeans you might want to buy.
First of all, there's Rise. Rise refers to, essentially, the length of the crotch, and consequently how high the waistband comes. With the Classic or Regular Rise jeans, the waistband comes up to about your navel. With Low Rise jeans, the waistband comes up to about your hipbones.
Regular/Classic Rise is considered rather old fashioned these days. Low Rise jeans, on the other hand, make almost anyone look better. The lower waistband makes your torso look longer. Your legs also look longer because you have less extra fabric making the crotch of the jeans hang down somewhere around the middle of your thighs. The combination of longer legs and a longer torso creates the overall impression that you are taller, which is always good.
Understanding Cut And Fit
Next, Fit (sometimes called Cut) refers to the construction of the leg and how much the pants cuffs flare out. Classic Fit jeans have legs that taper slightly from the knee to the ankle. Straight Fit jeans have legs that are straight from the knee to ankle. Boot Cut jeans flare slightly from knee to ankle, and Wide Boot Cut jeans have an even wider flare.
The tapered legs of Classic Fit jeans tend to bunch up around your ankles above your shoes, which breaks up the smooth, streamlined look of your legs. Instead, go for a Straight or maybe a Boot Cut. The slight flare allows the cuff of your jeans to fall around the sides of your shoes, giving your legs a longer, leaner look.
Wash refers simply to the color of blue. Blue jeans come in every shade of blue imaginable, from a dark navy blue to a very light blue-white. Dark wash blue jeans are trendy right now, although medium and medium-light blues are still stylish. Avoid the very light blues, however, as that is reminiscent of the 1980s and will make you look out of fashion.
Distressing basically means trying to make the jeans look old and worn out, even though they're brand new. Ironically, distressed jeans are more expensive—so you end up pay more for jeans that look worn out.
Always optional, Distressing goes from very mild, like a little wear around the cuffs and pocket edges, to extreme, which may involve rips, holes, bleach spots, worn patches, etc. Distressed jeans are generally popular with young people, who consider the look hip and stylish.
Distressed jeans, however, are not really appropriate for a relaxed or business casual setting. In fact, most companies that allow "Jeans Fridays" have prohibitions against Distressed Jeans in their dress codes.
Hopefully, this article has helped you decipher some of the industry jargon and hip lingo about mens jeans. Now, knowing what types of fits, rises, and washes are flattering and fashionable, go out and buy some jeans!