Cosmopolitan l Amy Armani
We all agree that a good pair of jeans is crucial to every person’s wardrobe. They’re classic. They go with everything. Indigo is a neutral!
But in practice, we’ve all been swept up in a less-than-rational shopping moment (midnight wine or clearance racks, anyone? Everyone?) and found ourselves with a pair that’s not quite right.
However, there’s actually a formula to follow to find *exactly* the right jeans—ones you’ll wear and love for years to come. Just start here:
Find Your Fit
“It’s important to start with fit,” says DL1961 CEO Zahra Ahmed. “Depending on your body type, you have to pick a rise and inseam combination that makes you feel the most comfortable and confident.” This is no time for impulse shopping or stanning the style of an influencer. Go in person to a store (or be okay hauling a boatload of denim to UPS for returns) to try on a ton of different styles until you hit on one that sings to you.
Consider the Fabric
The perfect pair of jeans will also be comfortable next to your skin. Cotton is a longtime favorite, but incorporating TENCEL™ fibers, which are 100 percent bio-based fiber with enhanced breathability and thermal regulation, makes jeans feel smooth and gentle on your skin. Plus, it creates an unfavorable environment for bacteria growth. (Read: less stink!)
As for stretch? “It really depends on what you prefer: some people love the hold-you-in feel of a stiffer fabric, while others prefer jeans with a little give,” Ahmed says. Go for jeans that have two percent Lycra for a more classic feel, or up to fifteen percent spandex and polyester if want more freedom of movement.
Make Sure It Has Style Longevity
“Trends in fashion come and go, and some denim styles are fun to experiment with,” says Ahmed. Jeans that can carry you through all situations and seasons share a few traits: medium to dark wash, a finished hem, no creative fading patterns or holes, and a slim profile that goes with everything in your closet without being lumpy, bumpy, or baggy.
These Emma Low-Rise Skinny’s have a contour waistband and can go with a sweater and sneakers, a sexy tank and heels, or a silk tunic and ballet flats. So… everything.
Take the Environment into Account
It takes approximately 1,500 (!!!) gallons of water to create your typical pair of jeans, from growing the cotton to dying the denim and washing it out again. Plus, conventional cotton is often doused with pesticides, especially in developing countries with few regulations.
The good news is that some brands are trying to create clothes in a much more eco-friendly fashion. That’s why fabric is so important. TENCEL™ fibers are made from wood sourced from sustainably managed forests. Part of the TENCEL™ portfolio, TENCEL™ Lyocell is created in a closed-loop process powered by renewable energy, in which 99 percent of the solvents are reused. And, like cotton, it’s biodegradable at the end of its life.
On top of that, DL1961’s manufacturing facility recycles water and uses waterless techniques to achieve that rich indigo color, wash, and fading on its jeans. The result is that an average pair of DL1961 jeans only uses eight gallons of water.