Jeans look great on many women, no matter what your age is. But in order to look stylish in them over 40 you should choose your jeans with a little more thought. Below are some general guidelines to follow for how to wear jeans after 40.
How to wear jeans: Jeans outfit ideas
As well as plenty of tips on how to wear jeans in the most flattering way, read on for lots of jeans outfit suggestions and inspiration on what to wear with your jeans.
As always these are just general guidelines. Women over 40 can wear jeans in any way they want. These are just my suggestions on how women over 40 can look the best in their jeans.
1. Opt for a dark solid color
This looks dressy and has the added advantage of making you look slimmer. A pair of dark blue jeans really is one of the most versatile items you can have in your closet. Wear with almost anything.
Fonda @savvysouthernchic above chooses a classic pair of skinny dark jeans.
2. White jeans also look great
White jeans are fabulous for spring and summer and make every outfit look fresh. But they also look great for the colder months too – so don’t pop them to the back of your closet. Also, take a look at how to wear white jeans.
These PAIGE jeans below are a great basis for many outfits.
For more style inspiration, read our article on how to wear blazer with jeans
3. Heavily stone-washed or bleached jeans are harder to wear
I personally avoid these. Slightly darker jeans are much easier to wear with other clothes and can be worn to work too.
I’ve seen many 40+ women looking great in ripped jeans but I personally avoid these too.
That doesn’t means you have to go too dark though. The PAIGE straight leg jeans below are a great example with a very subtle distressed feel.
For more inspiration check out our article on what shoes to wear with different styles of pants.
4. Crop flare jeans are one of my favorite options
Although wider jeans have become more fashionable now, I still love this type of jeans and they are still my personal favorite. I love my cropped flare jeans by PAIGE which I wear with short cropped tops and longer tunic style tops.
5. Make sure that the jeans don’t cut into your stomach area
Muffin tops over jeans are not flattering!
You may want to go for jeans with a higher rise. If you get a firm stretchy fabric they will do a great job of tucking the tummy in.
For more tips on avoiding muffin tops check out my hiding belly tips.
6. Jeans look great with longer tops too
If you’re wearing skinny jeans, slim fit jeans or crop flare, you can combine your jeans with a longer, tunic style top like the one below. The asymmetry adds extra oomph to any look and is effective at hiding a belly.
7. Don’t show your g-string
Jeans look fabulous with shorter tops and jackets. But choose your underwear wisely. Quite a few jeans styles end at the hip area which means g-strings can show when sitting down or bending.
It’s best to choose your underwear according to the jeans you are wearing. If you love wearing g-strings you may like to opt for high waisted jeans which are now very much in style.
8. Flared jeans or wide legged jeans is a fabulous trendy option
These pants can give you a great shape as they highlight your waist. Make sure they fit well around the waist and hip area.
It’s nice to wear high heels under them and ensure that the jeans have good length and almost touch the ground. This will really lengthen your legs.
This style is particularly on trend at the moment after years of skinny jeans.
A wider style is particular flattering if you have an inverted triangle body shape as they will balance your figure.
Cropped wide jeans are more challenging to wear as they shorten your legs. They create a very hip and modern look though and when styled well look fabulous. They look best with a tucked in top as shown below.
Nikki @40notfrumpy above tucks her shirt into her wide leg jeans, which creates a long-legged look.
These kind of jeans will look great on shorter women. Read all my tips for petites.
9. Skinny jeans or legging jeans will look great with tunics and longer tops
I like to wear tunics and short dresses over jeggings (jeans that are leggings).
Want to know more, check all my tips for wearing leggings over 40.
10. Cropped jeans is a great option when styled well
Although cropped jeans can look good on many women, you need to take your proportions into account.
If you have proportionally short legs or want your legs to appear longer, tuck in your tops or wear a cropped tops. That way, you will make your torso look shorter and your legs look longer.
Abi @stealmystyle40 above wears her cropped jeans with sneakers an an on-trend oversized blazer.
Take a look at how to determine your vertical body type if you aren’t sure about your proportions.
Cropped jeans are easiest to wear when tapered and are best worn with heels.
For more ideas check my guidelines on how to wear capris and cropped pants.
11. Get jeans with stretch!
The fabric of some jeans can be harsh and stiff so I always prefer my jeans with a bit of stretch. It makes them more comfortable to wear and they often fit better too and retain their shape.
12. Boyfriend jeans are great for a casual vibe
Jennifer Aniston loves wearing her boyfriend jeans with a blazer. Take a look at how to dress like Jennifer Aniston.
13. Avoid really baggy jeans
Unless you are going for a VERY casual vibe, you may want to avoid really baggy jeans.
Boyfriend jeans, however, as discussed earlier are popular and can look great for casual days. For a timeless style, look out for a pair of straight-leg jeans.
14. be careful with really low rise cuts
These can really cut into your belly and may lead to showing underwear.
Best to choose models with medium rise fitting.
High rise is popular too but make sure it fits you around the tummy area. Take note that mom jeans (very high jeans that are roomy in the belly area and don’t fit properly) are usually unflattering and will age you.
Take a look at the best jeans with tummy control for more ideas.
15. Ensure that the jeans fit you well, and don’t go for jeans that are too tight
Fit is the most critical part of any jeans. Try a few different pairs. Look on how well they fit around the hips. Also ensure they have the right length and rise and that they don’t cut into your tummy area.
If you don’t feel fabulous in your jeans, try another pair. A slightly different cut can make all the difference.
Don’t be tempted to buy jeans that are too tight. Bend in them. Squat. Remember, they need to to be comfortable and make you feel fabulous. Don’t compromise on this.
16. Getting the length of your jeans right is very important!
Also consider how you will wear your jeans. Will you wear them with heels or flats? For wider styles, it’s important that your jeans almost touch the ground so it’s important to know which types of shoes you will wear with them.
When you find a pair you love, you may consider buying one to wear with flats and one to wear with heels. You may need to take up the hem of one pair, but it will be worth it.
Adaline @sdmomstyles above chooses a pair of jeans that show of a little ankle.
You may want to check our guidelines on the best lengths of pants.
17. Bootcut jeans are a classic and will continue to look good
Bootcut jeans are flattering for most body types and can be very lengthening.
Make sure they skim the ground. They look best with pointed shoes for an even more lengthening effect.
I still love my PAIGE denim bootcut jeans that are now at least 6 years old and still look good! They fit like a glove and feel soft on the legs. Buy them long enough to wear with heels and your legs will look a mile long.
As always these guidelines are just that: guidelines. As any stylish woman will know, you can bend and break them as you please and trust your intuition. Your jeans will look best if you adapt them to your own personal style.
What are the best brands for jeans for women over 40?
Looking for your perfect pair of jeans can feel like an impossible task, so when you find a brand you love, stick with it! Here are some of my favorites below.
Melissa @melissabultburns above chooses a pair of jeans that have an on-trend feel because of the raw hem detailing.
NYDJ (Nordstrom link here) was created especially for women over 40 even though they now also target a younger crowd. These jeans are comfortable and they have a good assortment of stretchy mid rise jeans
Kut from the Kloth
KUT from the Kloth offers high quality jeans that are very affordable.
what to wear with jeans
Below is a capsule wardrobe with lots of outfit ideas on what to wear with jeans. I’d love to hear about how you wear your jeans in the comments.
Kimba @kimbalikes above cuffs her jeans and tucks in her shirt.
9 outfit ideas for your jeans
1. Wear with a bright color and blazer
A blazer always looks chic with jeans. Especially when you combine a classic blazer with a bright in-style top and fabulous accessories.
River Island Ruched Sleeve Blazer – River Island Asymmetric Seamed Camisole – MANGO Mom Jeans – DREAM PAIRS Pointed Toe Pump – ALDO Faux Patent Leather Envelope Candy Clutch – RF Rizir Fashion Seed Bead Necklace – Nordstrom Pavé Inset Oval Orbital Earrings
2. Jeans and heels outfit
I always think that jeans worn with a small heel look fabulous for a smart-casual night out.
Melanie @melanie.rae.miller above chooses a pair of nude jeans with her white skinny jeans.
Open Edit Oversize Linen Blend Blazer – Nordstrom V-Neck Tank Top – Max Mara High Waist Stretch Ankle Jeans – DREAM PAIRS Pointed Toe Pump – Tory Burch Small T Monogram Jacquard Tote – Nordstrom Pavé Inset Oval Orbital Earrings
3. Thigh high boots with jeans
Most wider jeans look best with shorter jackets and tops.
If you want to ensure that your legs look nice and long, make sure there isn’t too much contrast in the color of your jeans and your boots. You can choose black jeans with black boots for winter. Or, for summer, a paler pair of boots work particularly well for a boho outfit.
SweatyRocks Kimono – Ted Baker London Yensine Open Stitch Sweater Tank – Caslon High Waist Skinny Jeans – Allegra K Rhinestone Over the Knee Boot – Monica Vinader Deia Huggie Hoop Earrings – Marc Jacobs The Director Leather Tote – Bienvenu Wide Brim Wool Floppy Hat
4. How to wear high waisted jeans
Wearing high-waisted jeans can be an effective way to make your legs look very long. If this is your aim, then style with your top tucked in, or a shorter top.
Natalia @nodins.stylish.me above chooses high-waisted jeans and high platforms that make her legs look a million miles long.
Ted Baker London Tavia Smock Long Sleeve Wrap Top – PAIGE Harper High Waist Wide Leg Jeans – Skechers Beverlee High Tea Wedge Sandal – Tory Burch Small T Monogram Jacquard Tote – Monica Vinader Deia Huggie Hoop Earrings
5. How to wear straight leg jeans
Straight leg jeans are a classic that won’t date. So you can really wear them anyway you want.
A blazer, shirt and pointed flats is always a stylish, casual combination.
Open Edit Oversize Linen Blend Blazer – Equipment Signature Silk Button-Up Shirt – rag & bone Dre Featherweight Slim Fit Jeans – FEVERSOLE Pointed Loafer – Tory Burch Small T Monogram Jacquard Tote – Monica Vinader Deia Huggie Hoop Earrings
6. How to style black jeans
Black jeans are such a style staple that go with everything.
River Island Ruched Sleeve Blazer – Ted Baker London Yensine Open Stitch Sweater Tank – Levi’s Ribcage High Waist Ankle Straight Leg Jeans – Allegra K Slingback Block Heel Sandal – Nina Glitter Minaudière – BOCAR Layered Link Crystal Beads Necklace
7. How to wear skinny jeans
Skinny jeans are always a good option if you want to wear a tunic or a looser fitting top as they can keep the balance of your outfit in proportion.
8. How to wear bootcut jeans
Bootcuts have never not been on-trend, but they did fall out of favor for a little while when skinnies seemed to be all we saw on the catwalks. They’re definitely back on trend right now, along with many other trends from the 1990s.
Free People Temecula Embroidered Cotton Top – 1822 Denim Flare Jeans – Lucky Brand Mindra Espadrille Wedge Sandal – Tory Burch Small T Monogram Jacquard Tote – Monica Vinader Deia Huggie Hoop Earrings
9. How to wear flare jeans
Flare jeans are particularly on trend right now as many 1970s styles are currently making a comeback. To make sure that your outfit doesn’t overwhelm you, you may want to keep your top or jacket shorter or more fitted, ensuring that your top nips in at the waist.
A wider top can also work if it’s short enough or if you’re going for a more bohemian look.
Sara @style_designco above styles her flared jeans with sneakers.
Nordstrom Drape Neck Short Sleeve Top – PAIGE Claudine Ankle Flare Jeans – Lucky Brand Mindra Espadrille Wedge Sandal – ALDO Faux Patent Leather Envelope Candy Clutch – BOCAR Layered Link Crystal Beads Necklace – Nordstrom Pavé Inset Oval Orbital Earrings
A jeans capsule wardrobe to mix & match your jeans outfits
Below, you can see many of the outfits created above together in one capsule. You could easily mix and match many of the tops to create different outfits.
shop some of the items above here:
For more advice on a capsule closet, also take a look at how to create a capsule wardrobe.
More jeans inspiration for you
The following capsule is past season, but the styles are all timeless so should still provide some inspiration for you if you’re looking for inspirations for jeans outfits for colder weather.
How do you like to wear your jeans? Let me know in the comments below
- What Shoes To Wear With Different Styles Of Pants
- The Best Fitting Jeans For Women: Choose The Best Jeans For Your Body Type
- The Best White Jeans For Women Over 40 – Our Top Picks
- The Ultimate Guide To Creating A Capsule Wardrobe That Works For You
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Feature image by Kimba @kimbalikes
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