Denim is the perennial American fabric. We all have at least three pairs of jeans in our favorite style, a good number of denim cutoffs, and our go-to denim jacket. Denim is an everyday staple but can also be statement piece; it works well with literally everything and can be worn in a variety of styles from retro to high-fashion streetwear. No matter your style or size, denim is the fabric of our lives.
We’re seeing a perfect mix of continuing trends in addition to some unexpected and non-traditional ones that are making a comeback. If you live and breathe for everything denim, make these trends the season’s must-haves for your closet, or if you’ve been dying to experiment with a new type of jean but don’t know which one to choose, look no further than this guide. I did all the research for you, so cop a squat and read on for what denim styles are in for the summer.
If you take nothing else away from this guide, vintage-style fits, washes, and styles are what’s hot. The ongoing obsession for all things ‘90s brings us these jeans that you can spot by the lived-in and pre-loved quality as if it had been pulled straight out of a thrift store sale bin. Comfortable stretch is essential to the vintage appeal and they can be dressed up or down in an endless amount of ways.
Don’t call it a comeback. Skinny jeans have been the go-to jean for so many years, but Celine, Marc Jacobs, Gucci, and so many others think it’s time for a change. This jean has a relaxed fit and subtle boot-kick leg that’s not as exaggerated as a flare. This look is oh-so ‘70s and vintage washes are also key for this trend. Bootcuts are best worn with, you guessed it, boots. Coordinate with your favorite pair of booties, platforms, or Dr. Martens.
These jeans might have a name that implies they’re more for a middle-aged matriarch than a trend-conscious 20-something, but these are the hottest and most stylish jeans on the market right now. These jeans were all the rage in the ‘90s and evoke the nostalgia of that era. They feature a high-waist, straight, relaxed, or slouchy fit, and suit a wide range of body types. Mom jeans pair perfectly with a crop top and some sneaks for an effortlessly casual outfit. If you have a more elevated sense of style, match with mules and sleek blazer for a more structured approach.
That’s right, ripped jeans are back in action, so prepare to roll your eyes when parents ask, “Where are the rest of your jeans?” or something to that effect. The trend is updated with grunge finishes like bare knee panels that make for an edgier look. Contrast the undone bottom with a voluminous high-neck blouse for an unexpected balance.
The iconic element of American fashion is the trucker. It will never go out of style and works with everything in your closet. Go the casual route with oversized proportions or update the look and add drama with exaggerated ‘80s shoulders. Work it like this street style maven and layer over a dress or skirt so the trucker acts like a top. Peak interest by mixing textures with the denim like feathers or crochet.
Hemlines have dropped; a blessing for those of us who can’t get behind short shorts that are just too short. These slim Bermuda-style bottoms work with everything from sportswear to tailored looks. Slip on a pair of mules or strappy sandals and be on your way with one of the biggest denim trends of the season.
You might have gotten horrific flashbacks from the early 2000s after reading the name of this unexpected trend, but hear me out before you say no. The midi-length denim skirt was seen across runways from Stella McCartney to Celine to Givenchy in updated and fresh designs. They don’t have to be the dowdy, uncomfortable skirts you remember from the early aughts, they come in A-line silhouettes or with a split hem for ease of movement and can be updated with a paper-bag waist for style. Tie a button down at the midriff and coordinate with a high-waist version of the skirt for a less concealed approach or with cute cardigan for a more casual look.
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