The perfect pair of jeans is a savvy investment that won’t just last you for years to come, but will go with just about everything. From a blazer and brogues for smart-casual occasions to a plain white t-shirt and sandals for laid-back summer cool, having your ideal pair in your wardrobe makes dressing easy for the sartorial man – but finding them in the first place when there are so many different cuts and fits to sift through can be challenging.
If you’re the type who has long stuck to your tried-and-tested style but are ready to branch out and try something new, then you might be feeling overwhelmed by the sheer amount of choice – as well as wondering if you can actually pull any of the latest high-fashion looks off. As a general rule of thumb, a classic pair of jeans is always a timeless choice that will see you through most eventualities, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have fun with dressing and trying out some of the latest seasonal trends. Your Jogg jeans might always be your favourites, but there’s no harm in experimenting.
To get it right, it’s important to bear your body shape in mind and dress to flatter. Knowing what suits you and is most flattering is key, and that ultimately comes down to trying a few pairs out and seeing how they look. If you’re unsure where to start, then we’ve put together the ultimate guide to men’s jean fits to help set you off on the right track.
Starting with the simplest first, straight leg jeans are based on a straight silhouette and suit almost every body type. Designed to be not-too-tight nor too loose, they sit comfortably on the hips and feature a mid rise, making them smart enough for smart casual but laid-back enough to support a relaxed, off-duty look too.
A slight variation on the straight leg style is the tapered jean. Tapered jeans for men can be particularly flattering for those who prefer a close fit on the lower legs compared to the upper legs, so if you have slim calves and larger or more muscly thighs then these are a great choice. Starting straight at the top, they gradually narrow to the ankle, and again, look smart enough for a variety of different occasions if styled right.
Tapered jeans are often available in both a straight and slim fit, so bear this in mind and be sure to try the two different styles on to see which one looks best before you buy.
Featuring a lower rise that sits just above the hips, the slim fit is the mid-way point between straight and skinny, with a straight but narrow cut without the snugness of skinnies. Slim fit jeans allow for more movement, and don’t cling at the ankles, making them another classic cut that the majority of men can pull off and feel comfortable in while doing so.
A step up from the slim fit, skinny jeans have enjoyed huge popularity over recent years, becoming a major fashion trend in the early 00s when Indie music was very much de rigeur. Since then, they’ve stuck around thanks to their flattering cut, and comprise a narrow, close-fitting cut that is tight to the skin at the hips, knees and ankles with no tapering.
Bootcut jeans are enjoying a renaissance in 2022, and are officially back in favour. A classic pair of bootcut jeans has a high rise and tapers out into a wide hem at the bottom to make them perfect for wearing with a pair of boots, and while not as extreme as the flared silhouette that punctuated the seventies, is a subtler nod to the look. Popular in the 70s and then again in the 90s, they’re a bold choice for men this season, but the savvy sartorial male shouldn’t hesitate to add a pair to his wardrobe.
Another style that was popular in the early 00s before briefly disappearing from the fashion scene, wide-leg jeans are a huge trend this year, and offer the utmost in comfort, hanging loosely from the hips all the way down to the ankles. If you’ve spent years in slim, straight or skinny fit jeans, then the idea of embracing the wide leg look might feel daunting, and granted, it’s a tricky look to dress up. Our advice? Splurge on a quality designer pair and keep them as casual, day-off attire. There’s no doubt that they look good in the right setting, but keep them out of the office.