Denim is a tricky fit—whether you’re long and lean or curvy all over, finding the right pair of jeans can be an arduous task. Here, we show you the best styles for your shape, as modeled by Lucky staffers.
Body Type: Full Hips and Thighs
Jean Frustration: “I exercise a lot, so I've got big legs—sturdy thighs and calves. So it’s hard to find a pair of jeans that I can pull over my legs and still have them fit at the waist.” — Denise Burrell-Stinson, Lucky magazine research chief.
Jean Solution No. 1: Flat-Front Flares
The best style for those with full hips and thighs is a flare—these are built to accommodate curves and the wide leg at the bottom balances out the proportion. Keep things lean by choosing a style that billows out below the knee for a straight line from the tummy to thighs. A flat-front, slightly high waist and slim pockets prevent any extra bulk.
Trouser jeans, $69.50, victoriassecret.com
Jean Solution No. 2: Dark-Wash, Floor-Skimming Flares
A dark wash is super-flattering—it hides any lumps and bumps. To flatter the hips, choose a style that is ultra-simple, minus any bells and whistles that can attract unwanted attention to certain areas. The extra length adds height, too.
Low-rise “Stella” jeans, $69.90, express.com
Jean Solution No. 3: Distressed, ’70s-Style Flares
If you want to go for a faded wash, look for distressed styles that have whiskered details right across the hips to draw the eye in. This pair also has an exaggerated bell cuff that makes your bottom look narrow. Pair with a sweet floral shirt for a flirty take on one of spring’s hottest trends: the ’70s.
Flare “Dawson” jeans, $78, silverjeansco.com
Body Type: Hourglass
Jean Frustration: “Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have a waist, but I find that most jeans cut me at the tummy in the wrong place, making my torso look shorter.” —Ericka N. Goodman, Lucky magazine associate credits editor.
Jean Solution No. 1: High-Waisted Trousers
It may seem counterintuitive, but jeans that hit above a natural waist (look for a pretty high rise, like 9” to 13”) make hourglass shapes look even more defined, as they cinch in a tummy and accentuate curves. This pair has an extra high rise that tucks everything in for a gentle corseted effect.
High-rise “& Now” jeans, $39.95, hm.com
www.hm.com for stores.
Jean Solution No. 2: High-Waisted and Cropped Jeans
A slightly cropped style accentuates an hourglass’ curves even further, like this pair, which hits right at the ankle. A tucked-in striped top adds emphasis to the slimmest part of your body.
Skinny “Aiko” jeans, $82, silverjeansco.com
Jean Solution No. 3: High-Waisted Skinny Jeans
These have a contoured waistband (it appears cut on an angle when the jeans lie flat), which hugs the tummy close to prevent any gapping.
High-rise super-skinny “Alexa” jeans, $78, mavi.com
Body Type: Tummy
Jean Frustration: “When you’re curvy, it’s hard to find jeans that fit you well all over.” — Beth Hitchcock, Luckymag.com fashion assistant.
Jean Solution No. 1: Faded Boot Cut Jeans
Boot cut is the best style for this body type—the clean lines and a straight fit throughout the leg streamline everything. Look for pairs that have at least 2 percent spandex for just a little stretch, and a low rise so they don’t cut into a tummy. These have fading throughout the knees, highlighting the narrowest part of the silhouette.
Bootcut “Aiko” jeans, $82, silverjeansco.com
Jean Solution No. 2: Distressed Boot Cut Jeans
Artful distressing, like whisker details and fading across the hips, make for a slimmer shape—the lighter details fade into the darker material that acts as camouflage.
Embellished belted boot-cut jeans, $58, ymijeans.com
Jean Solution No. 3: Long Boot Cut Jeans
Floor-skimming styles create the illusion of height (especially when you add heels!), which slims a shape. This pair has a slight flare at the bottom (avoid super-tapered legs) that eliminates any appearance of top-heaviness.
Regular fit “Stella” jeans, $69.90, express.com
Body Type: Straight
Jean Frustration: “I can so easily get drowned in too much fabric, and sometimes I think I look too boyish.” —Ray Siegel, Luckymag.com associate fashion editor.
Jean Solution No. 1: Seam-detailed Skinny Jeans
A good lean fit can actually create curves, hugging even the slightest contours for a sinewy effect, which makes this style perfect for boyish builds. Look for styles made of thicker material and no stretch—selvage denim always looks great on boyish figures. A straight-across waistband that sits just below the belly button helps too, cutting at the widest part of the body for a feminine look. These have an angled seam down the legs, which makes you appear more shapely.
Skinny “Lagoon Wash” jeans, $69.50, calvinklein.com
Jean Solution No. 2: Bright Skinny Jeans
Color can be your saving grace—it’s eye-catching and accentuates your natural silhouette. And a thick, angled waistband adds a curvy effect. Again, choose something with a bit of heft—anything super-tight and super-thin runs the risk of toothpick legs.
Pink “Narrow” jeans, $65, Cheap Monday, karmaloop.com
Jean Solution No. 3: Super-Tapered Skinny Jeans
This ultra-fitted pair hugs the body close, and the bottom is really tapered for a calf-skimming fit that fakes shapely legs.
Skinny legging jeans, $59.50, victoriassecret.com
Body Type: Petite
Jean Frustration: “Being 5’2”, I have a hard time finding jeans that aren’t a million times too long that I have to take to the tailor.” —Lori Bergamotto, Lucky magazine style contributor.
Jean Solution No. 1: Low-rise Cropped Jeans
A shorter inseam, 28” suits most, tends to fit just at or above the ankle for a cute, jaunty effect on this body type. The low rise on this pair elongates the torso, adding some extra inches of height.
Rinse wash “Zebra Glam” jeans, $98, guess.com
Jean Solution No. 2: Distressed Cropped Jeans
Skinny styles that are a bit longer also work wonders for petites; just look for a tapered ankle (wide legs are too bulky) and roll up the hem for a cute cuffed look. Because this pair is one color, the cuffs don’t interrupt the lines of the jeans, making you look taller.
Light vintage wash “Mischa” jeans, $79, buffalojeans.com
Jean Solution No. 3: Baggy Cropped Jeans
A straight, fitted pair with slack in the knees moves the whole proportion up—and thereby elongates gams.
Cropped roll-cuff “Rio” jeans, $59, dkny.com
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