The new denim cycle that began in the midst of the pandemic shows no signs of slowing down. Around the world, women’s denim has loosened in response to a myriad of societal changes: a year-long lockdown that made relaxed fits more appealing, a global pandemic that prompted consumers to turn to styles vintage (and often looser) denim and a body positivity movement celebrating clothes that fit the body, as opposed to bodies that fit the clothes.
Despite this change, skinny jeans remain a top-selling product. But for those looking to broaden their horizons and introduce looser denim this year, Rivet has compiled five staple fits that need to make an appearance.
Devoted fans of skinny jeans can turn to the cigarette style for an easy transition to a looser fit. Snug at the thighs, mirroring the fit of skinny jeans, the cigarette jeans loosen to a slim fit at the knee. Jeans are a staple for brands like Everlane, AG and Frame, likely for their ability to elongate the look of the leg without adding bulk. A top choice among models, cigarette jeans are best paired with a basic white t-shirt and sneakers for an effortless look.
Straight cuts are the top choice among TikTok stars and Gen Zers. The growing popularity of straight-leg jeans even inspired Levi’s to update their 501 with a looser fit in December. The Levi’s 501 90s has a more relaxed fit through the seat and legs and sits just below the waist. Wear with a cami and bomber jacket for a low-key night out.
Classified by their low rise and loose fit, boyfriend jeans are on the other end of the spectrum from their high waisted skinny counterparts. The rise of fluid fashion has repositioned this cut as one to watch. Tailor the oversized style to your body with an on-trend waistband that will help you determine exactly where the jeans sit on your hips. Add some flair by wearing a pair of cropped printed leggings underneath and turn up the hems of the jeans so the other layer pops out a la Sarah Jessica Parker.
A staple of the 90s, wide leg jeans have returned to center stage with the resurgence of looser cuts. In May, product intelligence firm Trendalytics reported a 107% increase in wide-leg styles over the previous year. Worn with combat boots and a puffer jacket, the cut gives a more rugged look that can be turned into high fashion with just a few small tweaks – just swap out the puffer jacket for a crop top and the boots for strappy heels.
With a high waist, sometimes amplified by pleats, and a tapered ankle, the balloon cut offers a more lifted look than wide jeans. Mavi and Levi’s are just a few of the brands that offer their version of balloon jeans in a variety of colors and washes. The taper makes them easy to adjust, depending on your desired inseam and shoe choice. Simply roll up and expose a bit of ankle, or leave untangled for a more streamlined look.