Blue Jean Baby

5 Tips to Survive Buying New Jeans

It's a jungle out there.

By Rebekah Kibodeaux January 23, 2019

With each new year comes a fresh wave of fashion predictions, from which hairstyles will be hot this summer to the inevitable continuing resurgence of fanny packs or platform shoes à la the Spice Girls. Before the clock even struck midnight on 2019, rumors began to swirl about the possible return of the dreaded low-rise jean. Reactions were pretty much what you'd expect if you lived through that cursed style's original era.

The most important takeaway from the low-rise jeans scare of 2019 is that those of us with a less-than-stellar feeling toward the style can simply choose not to wear them. (Ever. Again.) Avert your eyes. Spend your clothing budget on items that spark joy, no matter your taste.

A properly fitted pair of jeans—whatever your desired rise—can take you a long way, but, unfortunately, with unreliable sources and an antiquated sizing system in place, acquiring your dream denim is easier said than done. There won’t be one winning strategy for everyone, but the best place to start is at the very beginning.

Measure Up

Though it sounds deceptively simple, kicking off your jeans journey by going to town with some measuring tape will truly make the process far more manageable. As mentioned, sizes will vary from store to store and designer to designer, so save yourself a bit of time and stress by checking your own measurements ahead of time. 

The Long and Short of It 

More and more brands have begun to appreciate consumers' hunger for height-specific pant options. As such, shorter shoppers are no longer relegated to ankle-biters, and the vertically blessed can opt for longer alternatives. Some outfitters like Torrid even offer sizes in extra-short and extra-tall—a giant leap for womankind.

Quick Stops

Already planning a Target run? Of course you are. It's worth noting, then, that Target’s Universal Thread line has caught the attention of many a beauty blogger thanks to its super affordable and impressively sturdy pieces in a wide range of sizes and styles. Old Navy has also been a pinch hitter for years now when it comes to affordable and accessible denim—say it with us now—for the whole family.

Local Finds

Houston boutiques can be an asset to your denim dilemma when you’re on the hunt for bottoms and still want to contribute to the local economy. Shops like Abejas and Tootsies carry higher-end alternatives to satisfy your trouser deficiency; but you don't have to drop a whole paycheck on jeans to keep it local: Seek out shops like Luxington, which stocks denim under $100 despite its swanky Uptown location.

Most Importantly: You Do You

You are more than your apple bottom or pear shape, and you deserve a standing ovation for listening to brands tell you otherwise since, well, the dawn of consumerism. Plenty of places, be it a shop or a blog, might still try to convince you that you shouldn't wear a certain style of jeans—take that with a grain of salt. If it doesn’t serve you to compare your body shape to food, then don’t. Experiment with sizes and designs that make you feel comfortable and confident, whether they're embroidered, flared, leopard print, or, yes, even low-rise.

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