Bootcut, Boyfriend, Wide Leg, Skinny -- Here’s How to Look Good in Every Jeans Style

One hundred and fifty years ago, Levi Strauss started making sturdy, denim work trousers reinforced with copper rivets in key spots -- and the rest is history. Jeans these days come in an almost dizzying range of different cuts and styles, and though some cuts have been banished from the runway, they’re still very popular outside the world of haute couture. But with so many different styles available, it’s not always easy to know how to style a pair of jeans. Is it okay to throw an oversized hoodie over those skinny jeans? Should you wear boots with those slim fits?

After all, even though you’re wearing jeans, you still want to look stylish and put-together. While a t-shirt and jeans is still a classic casual look, it’s not appropriate for every occasion. These tips will help you style your jeans right, so you don’t look like you just threw on the first thing you laid your hand on when you got up.

Keep It Sleek with Skinny Jeans

Skinny jeans are pretty popular for a jeans cut that’s supposed to have gone out of style. Of course, not everyone can wear skinny jeans -- it helps if you have skinny legs to put in them.

However, it’s a mistake to think that only thin women can wear skinny jeans -- if you have curves, this cut can help you show them off. And you’ll look your best in a form-fitting ensemble, as excess cloth will only make you look larger. If you have an hourglass shape, choose a high-waisted skinny to accentuate your trim waist.

To style skinny jeans, it’s best to maintain a sense of balance and avoid chunky shoes. A slim pair of canvas sneakers, like Converse, or even a sneaker with a thinner sole, like Vans, will look nice, but for a more formal look, flats or heels will do. While you should keep things slim below the ankle, you can offset the extreme look of a skinny jean with a flowy top. A loose, off-the-shoulder top will set off your skinny jeans nicely.

Go Retro with Bootcut Jeans

Bootcut jeans are great for a retro look with Seventies-inspired tops, but they also look great styled with modern, trendy neon solids; sweaters; faux-fur jackets; and even midi-length dresses. Because they’re a little flared at the bottom to accommodate a boot, they’re a great choice for cozy winter outfits that will keep you warm as you trudge to work in the ice and snow. For curvy girls, plus-size bootcut jeans can flatter your curves, but the flare below the knees will bring some visual balance to draw attention away from your thighs.

Balance Your Pear Shape with Boyfriend and Cropped Cuts

If you have a pear shape, you’ll want to avoid high-waisted jeans, as these will make your upper torso appear even smaller while making your lower half appear even larger. Instead, opt for boyfriend jeans, which are also known as relaxed fit or regular fit. These jeans have relatively straight legs, without venturing into wide leg territory, and they’re a little baggy, so they’ll balance out your bottom-heavy physique. Cropped jeans can have a similar effect, as can wide-leg jeans. Dress up your wide-leg jeans with a work-appropriate top, and turn up the bottoms to show off your mid-calf boots.

Soften Your Love Handles with a Sporty Mom Jean

There’s a reason why your mom wore high-waisted, tapered mom jeans all through the 90s, and by now you may have figured out what it is -- mom jeans can be very forgiving when you’re approaching a certain age. The tapered legs aren’t so thin that you can’t pair the jeans with chunky sneakers for a sporty athleisure ensemble. The high waist hides love handles and thunder thighs, but is surprisingly flattering on an hourglass figure, even if the hourglass is a generous one. Pair them with a crop top or something form-fitting that you can tuck in. Throw on a baggy t-shirt for a sporty look, or rock chunky boots and a sweater on brisk autumn days.

It’s not always easy to know how to wear different styles of jeans, but it helps to know your body type and what flatters it. Then, you can put together outfits that will feel comfortable, and look amazing, whether you’re headed for a night on the town or a walk with the dog.