And Now, 5 Elevated Ways to Wear Your Jeans in 2024

While baggy and wide-leg jeans have been the cool new kid on the block for the past few seasons (and unquestionably racking up a ton of miles on my denim odometer), when I saw relaxed ’90s straight-leg silhouettes pop up on the spring/summer 2024 runways, it felt like a stamp of approval to lean into the style again. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not giving up on my wide-leg jeans any time soon—they are the defining denim trend of the past year after all, but straight-leg jeans have always been the silhouette I’ve gravitated to the most. They are versatile, look polished, and are easy to wear with sneakers and heels alike.

(Image credit: Launchmetrics Spotlight/Proenza Schouler)

On the hunt to add a handful of new pairs to my denim collection, I tried and tested a whole host of brands and styles to find the best-fitting (and coolest!) straight-leg jeans right now. Here’s what I know: Not all straight-leg jeans are created equal. They have to fit properly, feel good, withstand frequent wear, and of course, make you look and feel your best. And their are subtle nuances in style and shape that can vary greatly. Whether you’re looking a more relaxed-fitting ’90s silhouette (like the image above), desire a more form-fitting pair, want high-waisted or mid-rise, or you’re seeking a pair that will make your booty look great, below I’m sharing a variety of styles that are great-fitting and get my very (very picky!) fashion-editor stamp of approval. Keep scrolling to see my favorite styles for all budgets and tastes. (For reference, I am 5’6″ and usually wear a size 26 or 27.)

Levi’s, 501 Original

Levi's 501 outfit

If you haven’t had the luck of stumbling upon the perfect pair of ’90s vintage straight-leg jeans a la ’90s Cindy Crawford or Rachel from Friends, then you may just want to head straight to Levis’ site and get yourself a pair of 501 Originals. This is one of my top picks in terms of comfort, style, and value for money. They come in a whole host of washes (I’m wearing Shout out Stone) which I was drawn to because they feel smart enough to wear to work or a night out. They’re classic (not overly trendy) and flattering on different body types. They’re non-stretch, but surprisingly comfortable and easy to move in. I’m wearing 30″ length but you can choose a longer or shorter inseam for your height. This is one of my go-to pairs I reach for day and night. I am also strongly considering buying their 501 ’90s jeans which have a slightly looser fit throughout the leg and a classic mid-rise. They’re next on my wish list.

levis jeans outfit


Reformation, Abby High-Rise Straight Jeans

Ref Abby jeans

Reformation: Abby High Rise Straight Jeans

Reformation always do such a great job with creating just the right silhouettes that feel of-the-moment, fashion-forward, and simply put, look correct for today. I tried two pairs that I’ve had my eye on for a while. First, one of their newer silhouettes, The Abby (in Lanier). This hugs in all the right places (thanks to its stretch) and is a little more form fitting throughout the waist and hip. These feature a high-rise silhouette and I prefer wearing these with flats as they hit at the ankle on my frame.

Reformation Val 90s Mid Rise Straight Jeans

Val jeans reformation

Reformation: Val 90s Mid Rise Straight Jeans

For a ’90s runway look, similar to the image at the top of the story, I recommend the Val jeans. Simply put, these feel cool. They’re a mid rise silhouette designed to be slouchy below the natural waist, thighs, and legs. They’re made from a rigid non-stretch fabric and come in a variety of washes. I recommend sizing down as this has a looser fit. They are on the longer side, so these pair better with heels if you’re not going to get them altered.


Slvrlake: London Jeans

white slkvrlake jeans outfit

There are only a small number of denim brands, I’d happily fork over $250 for a pair of jeans—and Slvrlake is one of them. The quality of Slvrake jeans is truly superior. Since I love an off-white tonal look these days, I went for their highly touted, signature London jeans in natural white. I feel like my legs looked so much longer in these jeans! They have a high-rise silhouette that elongates the legs and are made of rigid cotton which give them a vintage feel. I love the attention to detail and the craftsmanship of these jeans.

Gap, ’90s Straight Jeans

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