So, it took me a while to jump on the boyfriend jean bandwagon because I always thought I’d just be drowning in them. What finally converted me? Summers in Texas. Summers in Texas are HOT. Like, hot AF. Skinny jeans are fine if you’re spending your day inside a cold office during the summers, aka me (which BTW – can someone explain to me why office buildings feel it’s necessary to blast the A/C up the ass when it’s hot outside? The constant temperature changes give me whiplash.). But if you’re spending a lot of time outdoors, skinnies are absolutely out of the question (unless you like suffocating). Enter: boyfriend jeans.
For me, boyfriend jeans are perfect for summer because they’re lightweight and airy enough that I’m not dying outside, but they still cover my legs so I can stand to be inside cold, air-conditioned buildings without freezing my tail off. I’m one of those people who’s always cold and always needs to keep a sweater with me—and on the days that I wear shorts, I instantly regret it whenever I step inside a building. So my summer wardrobe largely consists of boyfriend jeans and maxi dresses/skirts—pieces that let a lot of air circulate, yet still cover enough to keep you warm inside a cold building.
Whenever I’m picking out a boyfriend jean, I prefer it to be in a mid or light wash with some distressing. Boyfriend jeans are usually a summer piece for me, and in summer I don’t tend to do dark washes. (I’ll still wear a black jean though—I think black works in any season as long as you pair it with the right pieces.) In summer, most of my denim is either distressed, faded, or both. Idk, something about summer makes me dress like I’m Colbie Caillat in one of her Coco music videos, or the female protagonist in a Nicholas Sparks movie adaptation set in a tiny coastal town.
It can be a bit tricky trying to make a distressed jean work in an office setting, so my solution for that is to say “fuck it” and wear what you want because if men can wear shitty cargo shorts to work then I can definitely wear a distressed boyfriend jean with a heel and a dressy blouse. BUT—if your work setting is a little less casual, you can still work a mid or light wash boyfriend jean with no distressing (and throw on a blazer or jacket—that automatically elevates any outfit). My go-to for jeans is Rag and Bone (surprise surprise), and their Dre cut is a perfect boyfriend jean for me—it’s relaxed enough but still maintains some kind of silhouette and doesn’t look frumpy in the back (you know what I’m talking about). The denim is also a great quality and really, really soft. I’m wearing the Dre capri in these photos—but since I’m short AF it works as a regular length jean on me. For fit reference, the inseam on their capri cut is around 27 inches, which works as a full-length jean for me at 5’1. Levi’s 501s are another great boyfriend jean option—and I would have gone with the 501s if I hadn’t first found the Rag and Bone pair I currently have. 501s come in just about any wash imaginable (both distressed and non-distressed), and they’re a classic.
For a more casual look, I love pairing boyfriend jeans with something simple, like a white v-neck tee or a lightweight sweater, like this backless one. I’m a sucker for anything backless, and I think it balances the relaxed cut of a boyfriend jean really nicely. Whenever I’m wearing a piece that is revealing in any way—whether it’s a plunging neckline or a backless cut—I’ll balance it by covering up somewhere else or pairing it with a piece that isn’t as body-hugging. Even in casual settings, I like pairing a boyfriend jean with a heel—I think it looks best with a stiletto heel in a really minimalist style, like these Steve Madden Stecy sandals (a cult favorite). A slim heel balances the wider cut of a boyfriend jean and keeps the look a little more feminine.
My exact sweater is sold out—I picked it up from Hollister on a whim a few years ago for super cheap. Lulu’s has really similar options (with additional colors available) HERE and HERE. LOFT also has a similar option with a twist-back HERE, and Gap has a version with a less dramatic low back selling HERE.
As for my jeans, since there are limited sizes available, I’ve found some similar options by Rag and Bone HERE, HERE, and HERE.