DENIM JEANS: DIFFERENT STYLES AND FINDING YOUR FAVOURITE PAIR!

DENIM JEANS: DIFFERENT STYLES AND FINDING YOUR FAVOURITE PAIR!

Jeans became a popular and staple clothing option in the Western spheres, think Americans embraced denim as their own around in the 1920s-30s. Primarily, jeans or denim jeans were made for factory workers who needed stiff and durable fabric for manual labor. For women, it became a fashion staple primarily when women started ditching skirts around in the 1950s. But again, up till the 70s and 80s, they remained associated primarily with women who worked in their family farms and the agricultural spaces.

For Asia however, jeans were a post-colonization phenomenon brought in by the leaders of democracy who wanted to sell their jeans in the new economies as more people entered the workforce. However, it wasn't till the late 1980s that denim wear as everyday fashion wasn't popularised. For instance, you see the impact of acid wash denim jeans and jackets imported right from American styles in everyone’s all-time favorite K-Drama Reply 1988.
You can see that the earlier generation of the show does not fully embrace denimwear as acceptable clothing for anyone but the youth of the country.

In the 90s we still followed the trend with sturdy jeans that could be worn to death. With their baggy silhouette, there was enough fabric to embrace the hip-hop within us. However, it wasn't until the global economic demand and population boom of the 2000s which lead to companies brought out the stretchy low-rising cotton-polyester mixed jeans and the jeggings fever dream of the 2010s.
We have curated a guide for everyone who is trying to shop smarter in 2023 and figure out which jeans are free from the trend cycle. Buying pure cotton jeans that are sturdy might seem like the right idea, but the problem with those is that they are not size-inclusive and not as flexible as the ones that have a slight stretch in them. So polyester is not as bad as we think it is. Right from denim jackets to high-waisted jeans you can trace that these stiff and utility pieces were made to be durable.

STRAIGHT CUT

Along with baggy jeans, and the y2k trend of the rockstar jeans, low-waist jeans, the enemy of millennials has made a comeback. This time with more coverage and a thought-out inclusive structure that suits more body types than what it did before. While they are still available in high-waisted options, trying out one with low-waist may elevate your wardrobe to a new level while still not compromising on your smart-casual style. The key to styling jeans is understanding what they are meant for and knowing what they are made for. Straight-cut jeans can be worn with a crop top, the flow of the outfit disrupts the natural shape of the body, and it makes your curves disproportionate, whereas a straight-cut shirt with a cotton or linen shirt is the perfect business casual look. The oversized shirts’ draping contradicts the structure of the straight-cut jeans.

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SKINNY JEANS

For many of us, our first encounter with skinny was probably Girls’ Generations’ Gee music video with every member wearing colorful jeans. They were a central system of the idol wardrobe back then as they allowed for dance moves to be seen, were comfortable for the idols, and kept them looking modest too. Skinny jeans were so popular that a lot of male idols like EXO and BTS were also seen wearing distressed black jeans for long performances and concerts. According to us, do not let go of your skinny black jeans, they remain to be versatile pieces of clothing and perfect for looking sharp, feminine, and modest. They are ideal for almost every occasion, for a concert, party, office, college, or family dinner. They are stain-proof and take a decent outfit to an edgy one with just a few changes.

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WIDE-LEG JEANS

Originated from the underground hip-hop scene, baggy jeans and wide-leg, and popularised by American pop celebrities who would often wear them to look casual and cool. They were popularised in Asia around the same time as the rise of home-grown hip-hop artists who wanted to replicate looks from their favorite artists. They have gone from being associated with celebrities with a careless image and Harajuku’s street style to suiting household heroes BTS, who are known for always being on their best behavior. They have also become a staple in a lot of Kpop Idol’s concert encore stages as they appear more down to earth in simpler, loose-fitting clothes as compared to their well-fitted stage outfits. Wide-legged jeans have also become an office staple when paired with shirts and loafers.

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FLARED JEANS

Flared jeans have been making circles with Asian celebrities for the last three years. Flared jeans may have come to East Asia late but they have not backed down from making them suit your bodies even better! This is a great option for someone looking to accentuate their curvy body and appear taller. These jeans have become a common sight on performance stages, as they offer both comfort and a feminine, soft appearance even during energetic dance routines performed in heels. One notable example is the K-pop group GFriend, whose iconic 2020 song "Mago" featured all the members donning flare jeans and shiny tops, recreating a captivating 70s disco look. The appeal of flare jeans lies in their ability to flatter various body types by providing a balanced silhouette. The fitted upper thighs and flared hems create a flattering shape that elongates the legs, making them an excellent choice for those looking to enhance their curves and appear taller. Not only do these jeans offer style and elegance, but they also allow freedom of movement, making them comfortable to dance in. With their retro charm and versatility, flare jeans have become a go-to choice for Asian celebrities seeking a fashionable and dynamic look that pays homage to the disco era.

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BOOTCUT JEANS

If you don't like skinny jeans or extremely loose-fitting wide-legged jeans and are looking for a pair of jeans that is both cool casual, and professional looking, bootcut jeans are the perfect option for you. Bootcut jeans come in a few variations but suit almost all body types. Especially for women who have longer legs than their torsos. They are not as restricting or tight as skinny jeans nor as form-fitting as slim jeans; which usually don't even fit women properly. Bootcut jeans provide the perfect balance between silhouette-hugging and easy-to-move-in. A perfect example of this demonstration is Itzy’s Yuna who wore low-rise bootcut jeans for her cover performance of U Go Girl by Lee Hyeori or Jisoo of Blackpink who shook everyone with her perfect y2k outfit!

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As of 2023, we have not only circled back from the 80s denim acid wash trends in the 2010s, to the 90s high-waisted impact on the 2015 fast fashion scene to now when low-rise jeans are back in the market. However, the material mix may still be not as authentic as we would expect but the jeans are better made now. As we have learned from learned past mistakes, low-waisted jeans with just a secure rise have made them immensely popular among Gen Z and Gen Alpha. We have circled back to both high-waisted jeans and 2000s rock revival low-waist jeans.
However, as never seen before, the circulation of high-waisted jeans, skinny jeans, and low-waisted jeans are all in circulation at the same time. People can get any type of jeans they prefer solely based on the fact that ever since TikTok emulsified the need for personal style over trendy clothes, all types of jeans are in regular demand, causing retailers to offer a larger variety.

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