Every year over one billion pairs of denim jeans are sold globally, this makes them sound pretty important, right? Although jeans are a menswear essential, buying a pair is not always the easiest. You’ve got to think about washes, fabrics, fits and brands. Thankfully, we’re here to help with the tedious task of finding the best men's jeans for you.
Denim jeans should be one of the most important items in a man’s wardrobe. Over the years they’ve been sported by men from every outlook of life, from cowboys, soldiers, punks and rockers, to hippies, mods, indie kids and preps. They’re a universal piece of clothing, suited to every season, outfit and occasion.
Like any other piece, with jeans you’ve got to find a balance between style, comfort, and practically. Perhaps the most important thing is that they fit well. There are fits available for every man, budget and body shape. Often it’s about experimenting until you find your fit, which will involve lots of packages, lots of trying on and lots of returns. So, to help you avoid any mistakes, we’re here to help you find the perfect pair by exploring the best jeans for men. Whether you're more of a slim fit man, or want the straight cut or Dad jean style, we'll guide you on the jean do's and don'ts.
When you're looking for a pair of jeans it can be difficult to decipher which ones will be best suited to you and your style. With a plethora of brands available to you (budget dependent of course), we at The Idle Man will be narrowing down the best branded jeans for men out there so you don't have to.
Types of Jeans
Of course, not every style is going to suit everyone, but the trick is to pin point your body type and which jeans will suit you best. If you have a smaller frame then the skinnier fits are best. Super skinny, skinny, slim and straight cuts are always good as they keep your slender shape in proportion, allowing you to wear an equally as fitted top. For those of you chunky guys, if you've been hitting leg day a lot then you'll want to avoid the really skinny pairs. Instead opt for straight, loose or Dad fit jeans. If you're not sure how to pull of such pairs then don't panic as we've broken down each style and got the ultimate guide on what to wear it with.
Super-skinny Jeans for Men
These jeans have made a statement in the world of menswear. These jeans are incredibly tight all over the leg, sometimes leaving little to the imagination. Usually made up of very little denim material (more so elastane and other blends) they tend to wear a lot easier than most other jeans.
Super-skinny jeans for men only really suit those who are of a tall and slender nature. If you're larger, then it's best to avoid these jeans altogether as they'll cling to every inch of your lower body, so only attempt these if you have extremely slender legs and upper body frame.
How to Style Super-Skinny Jeans
You'll want to play with proportion a little when you're wearing super-skinny jeans as you can easily throw it off if done wrong. Take a crisp white shirt or an oversized T-shirt and team it with a pair of men's black jeans. This gives the illusion of proportion as the tightness of your jeans will create an extremely slim one, and if teamed with an extremely tight top, you can easily look like an over grown child.
Skinny Jeans for Men
You may be thinking that super-skinny and skinny are in the same ball park, and you're not wrong, but the difference with regular skinny jeans is that they're slightly looser in the leg than its super-skinny counterpart.
Unlike super-skinny jeans, regular skinny jeans slightly skim over the entirety of the leg rather than cling to it. Slightly more forgiving, they still require someone quite slender to wear them, so again, if you're of a slightly larger frame then I'd avoid going for a pair of skinny jeans.
How to Style Skinny Jeans
You don't have to play with proportion as much as you would with super-skinny jeans as they aren't as tight and unforgiving, but make sure you don't go top heavy with what you're wearing. A simple jumper and denim jacket would work perfectly with a pair of men's skinny jeans as both pieces aren't incredibly thick or overpowering for your proportion.
Slim Jeans for Men
Probably the most popular style of jeans worn by men in the world over, the slim jean offers a smart and sleek silhouette for men to wear. They're not as tight in the leg as skinny jeans, but, as the name suggests, give a slim shape to your leg.
Slim jeans suit the majority of men as they're forgiving in most respects. However, if you've got larger legs than others, you may find that slim jeans are still a little tight around your legs. If you are larger and are still a fan of slim leg jeans, then I suggest going a size up as they'll be slightly looser in the leg whilst still giving you a slim silhouette.
How to Style Slim Jeans
Slim jeans can be worn with a plethora of looks and styles, so the world is really your oyster when it comes to slim jeans for men. Personally, I favour more classic styles, so go for a pair of raw or selvedge denim jeans and team it with a simple shirt or T-shirt and a pair of trainers for an easy and classic look.
Tapered Jeans for Men
This may be a name you've never really come across before when shopping for jeans, but it's a term that you'll need to know. Tapered jeans are jeans that are looser at the top of the leg and then taper to a more fitted shape from the knee downwards. This means your jeans will be tighter around your calves than your thighs.
Tapered jeans are great for men who have slightly larger legs as they're not form fitting the whole way around the leg. Perfect if you still to give off the illusion of a slim jean, but without all of the restrictions.
How to Style Tapered Jeans
Tapered jeans for men are easy to style as the proportions of your body aren't thrown off as much as they would be with a tighter fitting pair of jeans. Go for a classic look with these jeans by wearing a simple, casual button down shirt and a warm jacket to keep out the elements.
Straight Leg Jeans for Men
If you're looking for a pair of jeans that aren't tapered or fitted in any way then straight leg jeans will be the pair for you. The same size the whole way through the leg, straight leg jeans offer a more classic look to your denim with a nod to the 50's.
Straight leg jeans suit almost everybody, but be careful not to opt for too much of a wide fit as they can make you look bigger than you actually are. Go for a darker men's coloured jeans as these will be more transitional than other colours.
How to Style Straight Jeans
It's always best to stick to simplicity when styling straight leg jeans for men. Try wearing a pair of raw or selvedge denim straight leg jeans as these are seasonless and will carry you through a plethora of looks and styles. Team your jeans with a simple white T-shirt and a formal shoe such as a loafer or a brogue to top the look off.
Best Fitting Jeans
Finding the right pair of jeans can be tricky, especially when it comes to the fit. As we know, not everyone is the sample size some of us dream to be, so we need to find a pair of jeans that accommodate every part of us, from legs to waist and everything in between.
Jeans for Men with Big Thighs
Finding a pair of jeans for guys with big legs can be a mammoth task. The trick is to opt for styles that accommodate your legs rather than trying to squeeze into a pair that won't get past your knees. Tapered jeans and straight leg jeans offer this relaxed, looser shape that help accommodate your legs. If you're looking for a more modern fit, then I'd suggest opting for a pair of tapered jeans, however if you're more classically inclined then go for a straight leg pair of jeans.
Designer Jeans for Men
Designer men's jeans can set you back a few pounds, but sometimes you don't need to spend hundreds on a single pair of jeans. What you have to remember with designer jeans is you're mostly paying for the name and not necessarily the quality.
However, that's not to say that designer jeans for men aren't of a high quality, but you can easily pay a fraction of the cost and buy into a brand that have a long history of making jeans for men.
Edwin Jeans for Men
A brand that can trace it roots to 1947 in Japan, Edwin is synonymous with practical and durable denim jeans for men. Originally designed for the working man, Edwin jeans for men are the perfect brand to invest in if you're looking for a pair of jeans to get rough and ready with. A brand that can keep its practical roots at the core while incorporating a modern aesthetic is definitely a brand you can trust.
Levi’s Jeans for Men
Probably a brand that everyone knows and loves is Levi's. With a rich history, Levi's is noted for being the man who brought denim to America in the mid 19th century. Creating the first riveted pair of jeans, meant to give the jeans a longer lasting and more durable wear, Levi's revolutionised to manufacturing of denim. Known for keeping up with the times in terms of fashion, Levi's is definitely a brand to consider when it comes to investing in denim.
Nudie Jeans for Men
A Swedish brand, Nudie Jeans have risen in the denim world to practical and stylish statuses. Based in Gothenburg, Nudie have managed to create a brand that pushes the boundaries of denim, without falling into the 'Scandi' aesthetic, but by being a utilitarian and accessible brand to wear.
Lee 101 Jeans for Men
Lee 101 is the brand credited for adding the humble zipper fly to the, in my opinion, the best denim jeans. The brand was started by Henry David Lee, a grocery distributer, because he grew increasingly tired of the quality of workwear that was available. He made the first pair of denim overalls and jackets for the workers to wear, in turn making him one of the leaders in workwear apparel in the United States.
The Best Jeans for Men
- Have a look at different brands and find one that fits your style. Levi's, Nudie and Lee 101 are our personal favourites.
- Find a fit (or two) which works for you and your body type, and stick with it. Once you've found a style you like, it'll fit right in with your wardrobe.
- Slim fit, straight fit and skinny fit jeans are always a safe option for the slim to average built man. Pair with a denim jacket to nail some double denim.
- If you’ve got larger legs, opt for either straight fit, loose fit or tapered fit and you'll never go wrong. Make sure you keep your outfit in proportion with a slim fitting T-shirt or jacket.
On That Note
The world of jeans is wide and intricate. To find the best jeans for yourself it takes a lot of research and a little trial and error before you find the right pair and style for you. Take into account your own personal style and what you want form a pair of jeans and you can then start to narrow down some styles of jeans for yourself. You'll also want to take into account your body shape, as there's nothing worse than an ill-fitting pair of jeans on a man. Once you've cracked it you'll be ready to tackle any season and trend because you'll have a great pair of jeans to always fall back on.