Which Denim Cut is Right for You?

Nearly all of us own multiple jeans, yet we have only one or two favorite cuts that fit like a glove. Searching for the perfect pair of jeans for your body type can feel like a neverending scavenger hunt, but it doesn’t have to. What works for one person may not work for another, even if you both wear the same size. Next time you scout the racks for complimentary denim, remember these pointers based on your frame.

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Hourglass and spoon shapes

Stretch denim with 2% to 4% elastane is most flattering on this body type. Be careful not to go for a high elastane count as the fabric becomes thinner and can show dimples in the skin. Curves are beautiful regardless of size, so you’ll want to buy a pair that contours your lines. Pocket placement is a component as well to minimize trouble spots. Wider pockets minimize (which most curvier women like), and smaller pockets accentuate. High-waisted jeans look great on nearly everyone, but they look exceptional on shapelier women. Find a pair that is higher in the back than in the front to reduce gaps in the waist. Contoured waistbands are an absolute must for these body types. Boot cut jeans never go out of style and balance out larger hips but avoid giant flares as they can make you look heavier. Cropped denim can also look amazing on hourglass shapes, but it’s crucial to stay away from tighter fits as they can shorten and widen the look. When it comes to shorter pants, choose ankle-length over capri length to create a leaner appearance. A straight line down the leg with a cuff at the bottom is always a winning choice.

Another tip is to make sure your denim isn’t too tight at the knee because it can create an unnecessary illusion of disproportion. Low-rise cuts traditionally don’t flatter this shape, but the good news is most jeans nowadays don’t fall too low. Distressed jeans with lots of embellishments or tears usually aren’t the best either as they add attention to problem areas. Darker colors always work better than lighter shades! Brands that traditionally work well for this figure include J Brand, Joe’s Jeans, Rag and Bone, BDG, Rachel Comey, and Parker Smith.

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Rectangle or inverted triangle shapes

For ladies with straight, narrow hips; wide-leg and big bell-bottoms add curves in all of the right places. Roomier silhouettes fill out your hamstrings and thighs without making you appear larger. The key is to create an illusion of a smaller waist and broader hip when considering what’s best for you. Most women with straighter, athletic shapes prefer jeans that enhance the butt, so look for smaller pockets to create more curves. Lighter washes work well for you as well and can add more shape to your legs. The number one tip is to avoid medium-rise pants as they emphasize the straightness in mid-section. Low-rise, straight waistband cuts usually work in your favor because they lengthen your tummy and broaden the hip area. High-waisted jeans can sometimes work depending on where and how they fall on the waist, but pairing the jeans with a large belt is a guarantee to add more curves. If the cut isn’t right, high-waisted looks can sometimes create more of a straight line under your bust. If this is the case, you’ll know it!


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Lastly, overalls and denim jumpsuits typically look fabulous on you, and the good news is they are only growing in popularity. If you have a short torso and long legs (which many rectangle shapes do), finding overalls that work will be a breeze as most of them are constructed for your silhouette. Jumpsuits can look amazing in both baggy or tight fits as long as the waistline creates a minimization. Belted and cinched waist jumpsuits can instantly make you seem more proportionate than you are. Brands that traditionally work well for your body type include One Teaspoon, Frame, Show Me Your Mumu (this brand is usually high-waisted but cut with great cinching), G-Star, Lucky Brand, and A Golde.

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Premium denim brands traditionally are consistent when it comes to cut, which can make shopping for them a lot easier. Once you find a brand you like, you’ll most likely be able to count on it for a multitude of styles. The majority of higher quality denim brands are less likely to be phased out quickly, meaning the cut reigns supreme. Splurging on one pair of jeans a season that fit correctly can be more worthwhile than ten cheaper pairs that don’t!

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“I’m a writer, aspiring author, lover of all things pop culture, and an expert-level procrastinator. But above all, I’m a geek on way too much coffee.”