The Jeans Fit Guide: How to Buy Online

Buying jeans can be one of the toughest tasks for the online shopper. There are so many different cuts, styles and lengths (not to mention different brands size their jeans differently, meaning you can be one size in one brand and a completely different one in another) that it can seem a bit of a daunting (and confusing) task. The perfect fitting pair will become a style staple in any wardrobe that last for years, so we’ve put a jeans fit guide together to make that process a lot easier.

jeans fit guide

First of all, get your size right. Jeans are often given in waist measurements, which is why you’ll see sizes like ‘32’ or ‘W32’. Using a tape measure, measure the smallest part of your body between your hips and ribs; the size in inches is the one you need to go for – even if you’re buying low rise jeans that sit on the hips. When it comes to length, measure your inside leg (from crotch to ankle).

Confused about low, mid and high rise jeans? Typically low rise jeans sit on the hips, mid-rise are approximately seven inches from the crotch to the waistband, and high rise are 10 inches from crotch to waistband.

Now you have your measurements, the next task is picking the right style. From straight to slim, and skinny to tapered, finding the style that’s right for you isn’t always easy – plus different styles will give you a completely different fit.

Straight – Straight leg jeans are long and narrow, but not skinny. Going straight down the leg, the straight jean is a classic style which is a must-have in any man’s wardrobe, and is one that will never date. BOSS Green and Nudie Jeans do great straight leg styles.

Tapered – Tapered jeans are slim cut and narrow slightly at the ankle. The tapered style is perfect for the man who likes his denim long and lean, but doesn’t want to go for a skinny jean, and is a style that will work for both casual and smart looks. Look to Levi’s and Edwin for tapered jeans.

Slim – Slim leg jeans are a cross between straight and skinny, sitting close to the leg; perfect for every day wear. Levi’s Orange Tab and Edwin are some of the best brands for slim leg jeans.

Skinny – Skinny jeans are for the man and woman who want to make a style statement and have a slim silhouette. Skinnies look great with trainers, t-shirts and sweatshirts, or smartened up with a shirt or sharp blazer. Nudie Jeans and Levi’s are some of the go-to brands for skinny jeans – as is skinny jean connoisseur J Brand.

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Words by Angharad Jones

Clare Potts

Clare Potts


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