8 Flattering Jeans Styles If You're Over 50
You've got a world of options to choose from—not just "mom jeans."
Getting older can feel like a near-constant style evolution. As you become more comfortable in your skin, you invest in more pieces that feel closer to your personal style—and part ways with those that hold you back or just don't feel like "you" anymore.
Regardless of where you are in your style journey, however, the backbone of your wardrobe is likely a pair (or two, or 10!) of jeans. But as your style and your body change, it can be difficult to find exactly the right fit. That's why we reached out to style experts and asked them to share their picks for the most flattering jeans for women over 50. Read on for style inspiration—as well as a few specific pairs to try.
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Straight leg jeans
You can't go wrong with a classic, says Brooklyn-based personal stylist Kelci Nienhuis. "This is a great everyday jean for all seasons. Wear with a boot in the winter, a ballet flat (yes, they're back!) in the spring, and your favorite slides in the summer."
Not sure where to start? "I love the Perfect Vintage Straight Jean from Madewell," Nienhuis shares. "In a straight jean you want the leg opening to fall straight from just above your knee. The beauty is that they give you a little more room to move… but still keeps a slender profile, and [offers] a variety of ways to style."
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Perfectly on-trend, wide-leg jeans are perfect for women over 50, says Nienhuis, calling them "a great way to add a little extra style to your outfit, but stay comfortable and look good all day."
"Make sure you get a fit with some stretch," she recommends. "With a wide-leg pant, I recommend keeping your top more fitted to balance out the volume on the pants, and show off your waistline with a French tuck, or a full tuck. I love this Way High style from Everlane. They're another great style to wear over a boot or bootie, but also look great with flats, sneakers and sandals."
High-rise slim straight jeans
This type of jean is more tapered than a straight-leg jean, but looser than a skinny jean. Erica Ball, professional stylist and creator of Erica Ball Style, prefers them for women over 50 with an ankle hem in a medium to dark blue wash. "These styles tend to be the most classic for women," she says.
So, where can you get a fabulous pair of slim-straight jeans? "I work with many women between the ages of 40 to 65 and find that they all love jeans from the brand Frame," says Ball. "Frame jeans have more stretch than other brands and my clients love how comfortable they are compared to other denim." The brand offers high-waisted and mid-rise jeans.
"I find my clients who have longer torsos and/or a 'mommy pooch' love the fit of the high-rise pairs," she says. Try the brand's Le Garcon Degradable Jeans for a traditional style and the Le High Straight for an option with a raw hem.
High-rise flare jeans
Flare jeans are having a moment—and yes, women over 50 can get in on the fun. What's more, this style particularly flatters the common pear shape. "A pear shape is when the bottom part of your body is wider than the upper body," says Iryna Fedorchak, European-based fashion stylist and founder of Filoso Fashion. "To balance this out, I suggest flared jeans with a high waist in order to hide the tummy and create an hourglass body shape."
Another type of flare jean you could try is the "mom jean." This type of jean flares from the hip as opposed to the knee, says Fedorchak. "Mom jeans are not only the most trendy choice, but also provide the most comfort." Try the Madewell The Perfect Vintage Flare Jean for a classic flair, or the Agolde Riley High Rise Straight Crop for a mom jean style.
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The boot-cut jean got their name for their straight-leg silhouette that can easily slip over an ankle boot. You can also wear them tucked into knee-high boots or over-the-knee boots if you prefer a looser fit than the classic skinny jean. "A straight-cut or a boot-cut pair of jeans will stretch the silhouette without emphasizing problem areas," says Fedorchak.
Style yours with a flared tunic, V-neck top, or a relaxed button-up with a French tuck. The Ribcage Bootcut Jeans from Levi's are a bonafide classic.
This borrowed-from-the-boys style is a wardrobe staple. "As a style coach and 50-plus-year-old woman, hands down the best silhouette for women over 50 are boyfriend jeans—also known as 'slouch' or '90s style,'" says style coach Kim Hancher. "These offer a fit in the waist and hips, then become looser in the legs. You can size up if you want an even looser fit."
Hancher notes that boyfriend jeans offer a polished look and can be worn with a blazer, a blouse and heels, or a graphic T-shirt and tennis shoes. "This silhouette is versatile, comfortable, and age-appropriate," she says. "They allow a woman over 50 to play in the current trend space and still look pulled together."
She recommends the Rigid Slouch Jean from Everlane, or the Midrise Girlfriend Jeans from Gap.
Think you're too old to wear skinny jeans? Think again! "Skinny jeans are perfect to pair with ankle boots to elongate your lower half," says MaryKathryn Arthur, lead stylist at Short Story. She has a few tips before you dive into the trend, however.
"Keep the jeans the same color as the boots, or opt for something close in shade. The key is to avoid high contrast between the color of your jeans and ankle boots to keep a long vertical line going from your waist to your toes," she says.
You'll want to pay attention to the length of your skinny jeans, as well. "The hem of skinny jeans should hit right at the top of the ankle boot," Arthur explains. "Avoid skinny styles that are too long and will bunch up where they meet the ankle boots. This can look sloppy and shortens the leg. On the flip side, avoid skinny styles that are too short and expose your skin. Again, you want the flow from your waist down to your toes to be as seamless and clean as possible for the best elongating effect."
"I spent many years afraid of white jeans, but once brands expanded their straight leg offering and exploring shades of off-white, I was ready to jump in," says Nienhuis. "A mid-rise (8-10 inches) is a great way to avoid drawing attention to your midsection, and opting for an off-white or ecru won't feel as stark."
Ready to face your own fears and try some white jeans for yourself? "I love this pair from Paige," Nienhuis says. "They feel relaxed yet structured, and have just the right rise, as well as plenty of stretch for moving around. Madewell also offers a lot of jeans in 'vintage canvas,' which is a perfect off-white."