I go through shifts in how I dress based on trends, comfort, and how I’m feeling about my body at the time. But these shifts can last for quite a bit, enough that I find myself gravitating towards certain styles and completely away from entire trends I used to love and have filled my closet with (jumpsuits, hello?!), until I’m wearing the same 5 things over and over and need some variety in my life.
And lately, we’re talking a year or so, I’ve been noticing this: I’m wearing less of my dress and skirt collection and piling. on. the. denim. So, I obviously needed a few new pairs.
I am blessed that I spend my days at a casual workplace and get to wear jeans, so my denim gets a lot of wear. But after gravitating towards light jeans and rips in the spring, I realized my work appropriate denim choices were slim.
I put out the call on Instagram (if you were with me back when I filmed this Instastory in oooooh, April, you have been waiting for this post foreverrrr, so thanks for your patience): help me find the best dark jeans.
And, I mean, naturally, I’m pretty picky, so I had a few requirements.
My dream jean requirements:
- Dark rinse
- No feathered lines
- High waisted
- Tight to the ankle
- Petite or short (this was not a prerequisite, but I am 5’2, so I didn’t want to have to roll my jeans 17x)
But you all came through (duh). I stocked up and ordered a variety of styles (even some light jeans because #icanthelpmyself) and sizes (10-14) from a few different stores (American Eagle, Old Navy, GAP, Ann Taylor, and Torrid). Once I got all the jeans home, I tried on each. and. every. one. of them. And I think you guys loved it, so here is 10 minutes of me trying on denim for your enjoyment.
PS: if you want more real videos that are not Instagram stories transformed into YouTube, I can start spending time perfecting a setup – let me know!
So after alllll that research, there were a few standouts. And now that I’ve been wearing them for months, I have even more insight into what these jeans are like.
The best curvy dark jeans I decided to keep:
Brand: Ann Taylor
Size: 12 Petite
How they felt after a few months of wear: So I like these AT jeans because they’re very high waisted and very stretchy. Yet a claim written directly on their product page, “Looks as good at 9 P.M. as it did at 9 A.M. (A.K.A., it doesn’t stretch out),” I’d say has not been true for me. Maybe I needed a smaller size to start, I would say these jeans definitely stretched themselves out. I also have seen some slight pilling/wear between my thighs, which I haven’t really experienced with any other denim besides maybe Forever21 before, so that’s a bit off putting. However, I do say in the video it’s not the best quality I’ve ever seen, so if the stretch and the idea of keeping you in is appealing and you can get them on a deal, just maybe size down!
Price: $89 full price, but do not purchase without a 40%+ off code.
Size: 31 Short
How they felt after a few months of wear: My favorite thread-to-denim-color comes from these GAP jeans, they give a very nice classic denim look that matches with a lot. But, I will say, the wash on these continues to be a problem for me. Living in an apartment with $2.75 washer cycle in my basement, putting them alone multiple times through the washer is a tough task (I tried my best). And yet, these babies keep on bleeding. They’ve definitely retained their shape the best of the 4 pairs and are extremely structured. I do have to roll the shorts a few times at 5’2, but they look cute like that.
Price: $99 full price, but do not purchase without a big discount code.
Size: 12 XS & 12 S
How they felt after a few months of wear: You know Torrid, you really threw me off by having two completely different tags for what are allegedly the same pair of jeans, but I have seen some differences in these as it is as well! The XS has definitely been a bleeding problem. They are jeggings, not jeans, but the definitely look the cheapest of the bunch. I wear the XS when I really don’t want to roll the denim – and I don’t have to! The three button closure is also a bit different for me. I don’t hate it, but because there are so many buttons, there have truthfully been times I have forgotten to pull the zipper up because so much time was already spent buttoning. Roughest life.
Price: $59 full price, but again, use those codes ladies.
Overall I mean, I’m happy with the pairs I kept. I do think they were the best of the ones I purchased. Maybe not #dreamjean material, but they’re getting the job done.
I also wanted to include some of the suggestions you all sent along on Instagram, in case any of these would be a better fit for your body. Here’s what the ladies had to say.
Your dark jean suggestions:
- J Brand Skinny Leg in Ink. They are the best thing I’ve ever found for my muscular semi/petite legs. – @Philly_spartansurfaces
- Madewell the high rise or curvy high rise. They are a game changer. Just bought two pairs. Obsessed! – @crzycourt06
- Flying Monkey. I’ve gotten mine at Century 21 or Amazon. I’m not kidding, they are legit the best and most comfiest jeans ever!!! – @beckyshindell
- J Crew factory skinny jeans are my favs (I have three pairs). And you can order them for your size and inseam, too. – @smthngcreative
- Check out the Universal Threads line at Target. I was sooo surprise at the quality and they’re under $30! I got a pair of mid rise and high rise skinny and they were tight to the ankle. Dark wash, no fading/rips. – @christina.durante
- AG farrah high rise. They have them at Anthro, Nordstrom, etc. Not cheap but so worth it. I’ve bought like four pairs and wont buy anything else anymore. – @lmpayne
- No joke my favorite jeans are jeggings from Tablots – the colors and fit are fab. They also have petite section and high waisted. – @farbie0830
- The best: PAIGE Hoxton High Rise Ankle Jeans in Mona – @jnickas
- Lucky Brand. I wear their cigarette ones and they are good for petite! – @laurenstern13
- I have these and they’re the best. So comfy and stretchy: PAIGE Verdugo Dark Wash Skinny Jeans. I got mine at Lulus. – @kristinababore
- They’re technically jeggings not jeans, but they are amazing nonetheless. Democracy 30/10 AB solution jeggings in indigo. I found them at Nordstrom Rack and then bought a second pair on Amazon! – @luisaphl
- My fav pair are Citizens of Humanity but have a little feathering. But as far as the perfect stretch and rise and fit, they’re amazingly comfortable. I also have J Crew jeans that have a good ankle length and ankle fit. – @victoriabvlam