Fashion The 8 Best Boyfriend Jeans For Every Body and Budget The experts agree: Good American can’t be beat. By Rebecca Caplan Published on July 5, 2022 @ 04:52PM Pin Share Tweet Email We independently evaluate all recommended products and services. If you click on links we provide, we may receive compensation. Learn more. Good American/ Reformation/ InStyle Don't let their relaxed vibe fool you — boyfriend jeans can be one of the most difficult denim items to shop for. Finding the perfect pair means finding just the right blend of fit, texture, and wash, which can sometimes feel impossible. Still, even with all these variables at play, our experts agree that finding the perfect boyfriend jeans is more of an art than a science. But with brands offering more size ranges, fits, and washes than ever before, the task of finding your perfect pair means kissing lots of frogs to find your denim-clad prince. That's why, with the help of our experts, InStyle took on the task of finding the best boyfriend jeans for every body, budget, and style. We decided that the Good American Good Boy jeans, with its updated fit, inclusive size range, and unique details, proved to be the best boyfriend jeans of all the ones recommended and tested. Ahead, our picks for the perfect pairs of boyfriend jeans. Our Picks Best Overall: Good American Good Boy Best Value: Universal Thread Boyfriend Jeans Best Splurge: Re/Done 90s Low Slung Best Plus-Size: Madewell The Plus High-Rise Slim Boyjean Best Distressed: Good American Good 90s Best for Petites: J.Crew Petite Slouchy Boyfriend Jeans Best Low Rise: Addison Low Rise Relaxed Jeans Best High-Rise: AGOLDE '90s Jeans Best Overall: Good American Good Boy Good American Buy on Nordstrom Buy on Goodamerican.com What We Love: The great fit and a classic wash comes in an inclusive size range. What We Don't Love: Good American's take on the boyfriend jean is a little more tailored than what we'd normally look for in the style. Since launching in 2016, Good American has quickly become the new standard for all things denim. Founded by Emma Grede and Khloe Kardashian in 2016, this premium denim brand counts stars like Megan Fox, Ashley Graham, and Gabrielle Union among their die-hard fans. Their take on the boyfriend jean features small but unique details, like the distressed waistline and notched ankle, that don't take away from the classic look of the jeans. The fit also blends the worn-in look expected of boyfriend jeans with a tighter, yet unoppressive, silhouette to complement curvier shapes. But bear in mind, this updated take on the boyfriend jean won't afford the wearer the classic slouchy style or feel of a typical boyfriend jean. Instead, we chose this jean for its deceptively soft fabric that somehow doesn't sacrifice structure or stretch- so your butt will look and feel good all day long. Price at time of publish: $139 Size: 00-28 | Wash: Light wash | Details: Split hem Best Value: Universal Thread Boyfriend Jeans Target Buy on Target "Target's Universal Thread is basically Rachel Comey without the price tag," says Amy Leverton, trend consultant and author of Denim: Street Style, Vintage, Obsession. The low budget denim features many high-end-looking styles to give your outfit an extra oomph, like patched and topstitched knees but at a fraction of the price. Unlike other affordable pairs that contain a high percentage of spandex, these only feature a mere two percent; jeans with a lot of spandex can cause a pair to lose their shape over time, but many prefer it to get a better fit, especially over curves. With such a small amount of spandex included, this pair has just enough to ensure a comfortable fit, while maintaining that rigid denim look. Price at time of publish: $36 Size: 00-26 | Wash: Black, medium, white, railroad stripe | Details: Cuffed hem, patches Best Splurge: Re/Done 90s Low Slung Re/Done Buy on Nordstrom Buy on Revolve Buy on Shopredone.com What We Love: A versatile fit with perfect pocket placement. What We Don't Love: None of Re/Done's jeans feature an inclusive size range, including this pair. Any detail-oriented person will appreciate this take on the boyfriend jeans."You have to pay a lot of attention to the pocket size and placement," says Leverton about this pair of Re/Done jeans. "That can really make or break how good your butt looks." Most of the time when shopping for jeans, pocket placement varies for each brand and size. But meticulously placed pockets and seam lines on this pair give it a universally flattering look. InStyle senior fashion commerce editor Chloe Anello owns multiple pairs of these jeans and swears by them. "I didn't want to believe the hype, but they truly are worth the splurge. You can feel the time and consideration that went into each pair as soon as you put them on," she says. "I prefer all my denim to be rigid because I think it looks better over time than those made from a blend of stretch material." She adds that the lack of stretch is definitely noticeable, but the brand accounts for that with the fit, and it molds to your body over time, giving you the perfect slouchy fit. They run true-to-size, yet if you're unsure, we recommend sizing up. Plus, if you're on the tall side — Anello is five-foot-nine — these have the right amount of length. Price at time of publish: $285 Size: 23-32 | Wash: Dark, medium, black, white | Details: High rise, some have knee rips Best Plus Size: Madewell The Plus High-Rise Slim Boyjean Madewell Buy on Nordstrom Buy on Madewell.com What We Love: The cotton-spandex blend makes these jeans feel comfortable and lived in from the moment you put them on. What We Don't Love: According to experts, sizing can be inconsistent. Madewell always impresses us with their wide range of denim styles — and they didn't disappoint with their extended sizes that launched in 2018. Because they designed this pair with plus-size bodies in mind, the jeans fit through the thighs and waist while still maintaining that baggy boyfriend fit. That said, though, Marcy Guevara-Prete, plus-size style expert and owner of The Plus Bus, advises us to "ignore the size on the tag" because it's fairly inconsistent. "I sometimes size up almost 2 sizes to get my desired fit, especially in a relaxed cut," she adds. But if you're particularly worried, Madewell's special cotton, tencel, and spandex blend can help close the gap for those in-between sizes without sacrificing durability or fit. Size: 22W-28W | Wash: Medium | Details: High waist Best Distressed: Good American Good 90s Jeans Good American Buy on Amazon Buy on Nordstrom Buy on Goodamerican.com What We Love: The detailed distressing gives these jeans an organic look. What We Don't Love: Distressing can vary between pairs. Just as with their Good Boy jeans, Good American pays attention to the small distressing details, winning it this category. "I want to look like I found these at the bottom of a thrift store bin," says Guevara-Prete of these Good American jeans. "Good American jeans tend to look very 'ripped by accident,'" she says. Details, like chewed hems and a slightly ripped waistband, lend itself to that accidentally teared look that Good American has mastered. Keep in mind, as with all pre-distressed jeans, the rips can vary from pair to pair, especially regarding where the rips fall on each individual's shape. Price at time of publish: $155 Size: 00-26 | Wash: Medium, light, white, black | Details: High waist, some have thigh and knee rips Best for Petites: J.Crew Petite Slouchy Boyfriend Jeans J.Crew Buy on Jcrew.com What We Love: Each pair made from recycled materials and organic cotton is Fair Trade Certified.What We Don't Love: The rips look a bit manufactured, rather than natural.The boyfriend jeans from J.Crew have what we like to call a goldilocks fit — they're not too slouchy, yet not too tight; the jeans hit the perfect slouch middle ground. "Boyfriend jeans should hug, but not suffocate the hips," says Chloe Cole, owner and curator of Anachronista Vintage.J.Crew tweaked their design to feature a just-right mid-rise that actually accentuates your best features (a PSA for anyone who thinks boyfriend jeans are unflattering). J.Crew manufactured these jeans using certified Fair Trade Certified practices as well as 100 percent organic cotton, which tends to be a more sustainable choice.For further styling around this perfect slouch "consider pairing with a cropped top that has a feminine touch," says Cole.Size: 23-32 | Wash: Light | Details: Knee rips Best Low Rise: Reformation Addison Low Rise Relaxed Jeans Reformation Buy on Nordstrom Buy on Reformation Buy on Reformation What We Love: A low rise that doesn't sacrifice comfort. What We Don't Love: Reformation only offers the jeans in one wash. The return of low rise has been controversial — to say the least — but if you're going to do it, you might as well do it right. "We've entered an era where anything goes," says Leverton. "People are choosing what to wear based on what they feel most comfortable in and that's a really great thing. What you do with it, and how you wear it can determine how trendy you make it." This pair by Reformation gives us everything we could want in a low-rise boyfriend jean: a perfect muted wash, clean details, and a relaxed fit throughout. Even when styled as a vibey Y2K throwback (sans a Razr phone, though), they still can look classic. Price at time of publish: $148 Size: 23-32 | Wash: Medium | Details: Low rise Best High-Rise: AGOLDE '90s Jeans Free People Buy on Nordstrom Buy on Bloomingdales Buy on Freepeople.com What We Love: You can choose from a dozen different washes, each with their own unique distressing details What We Don't Love: Sizing can be hit or miss. Mixing high rise and slouch can be a tricky task when it comes to denim — you don't want the pair to add too much volume to your hips or gap at the waistline. These AGOLDE '90s Jeans have managed to create a perfect formula that gives you a relaxed look without sacrificing silhouette. And, with a dozen washes to choose from, you won't have trouble finding the perfect pair for your closet. Their unique wash options, along with their formulated fit, make these worth the pricier tag. Price at time of publish: $198 Size: 24-32 | Wash: Black, white, dark, light, medium, gray | Details: High rise, some have knee rips and raw hems What to Keep in Mind Fit As with any type of jeans, fit is a personal choice that can't be dictated by trend or style advice. When it comes to boyfriend jeans, some prefer slouchy with a low rise, while others only want a slightly-relaxed fit complemented by a high rise. Of course, there's no right or wrong way to choose which one is right for you, but consider experimenting with different fits to find the one that suits you most. Also, keep in mind that the jeans you leave the store with might not be the jeans you have in a year or two. With patience and a lot of wear, denim conforms to your body, giving you a personalized look that can't be purchased right off the bat. Sizing Unfortunately, the denim industry still has a long way to go when it comes to sizing consistency and availability. Ignore the number on the tag and go with your gut. When trying on boyfriend jeans, grab or order as many sizes in your range as you can, using the mirror as your guide instead of the size. If something looks and feels good, then they're right for you — it's that simple. Composition and details At the end of the day, a great pair of any type of jeans isn't about a brand or style — it's about patience. Boyfriend jeans come in a variety of washes, but the perfect worn color might come through after a few washes and wears. At the same time, if you're picky about a non-manufactured distressed look, you might be better off buying non-distressed jeans and waiting for nature to take its course. Your Questions, Answered How do you style boyfriend jeans? First off, don't be intimidated by the style. Simple rules can help guide you into making them work for your aesthetic — and truthfully, they look good on everybody and with everything from a basic white T-shirt to a statement jacket. Because they tend to have a boxy fit, Cole prefers to "pair them with something with a feminine touch, like a tight fitted crop." But if you're trying to avoid the boxy look altogether try this tip from Leverton: "I like a real tapered silhouette on my boyfriend jeans so if the hem is still a bit wide or if I want to make a straight leg more 'boyfriendy' I fold the inside hem in before rolling it, this creates a really nice tapered look." How do you distress boyfriend jeans yourself? When going down the route of distressing boyfriend jeans yourself, choosing the right fabric to start with is key. "Non-stretch (or rigid) denim looks more authentic and wears down more beautifully," says Leverton. Once you have your pair selected, simply grab sandpaper or a razor and rub it back and forth on the place you want to distress. Sandpaper will also soften your jeans which can give your wash a more worn-in look. Remember, patience is key. Try to distress over time, instead of all at once, and after each wash when the fabric is newly broken down.