Editor-Tested: Jeans That Promise to Flatter All Butts? 4 InStyle Staffers Try Them On
When America's quintessential denim brand Levi's announced the launch of its newest take on the iconic 505—the slim-fitting straight-cut jean from the '60s—with the promise to accentuate curves, and thus, achieve "that perfectly round derriere," curiosity (and truth be told, skepticism) ensued. Is this the miracle jean that we've all been looking for? Is our lifelong mission to find the perfect pair of denim finally over? And more importantly, does this jean make good on its promise?
Coined The Wedgie (a less-than-flattering, albeit cheeky, name), the jean sits high on the waist, hugs the hips, fits straight through, and ends with a cropped tapered hem. As to whether it really does flatter everyone, we sought the help of four InStyle editors and recruited a diversified portfolio of butt types that range from flat and non-existent to perfectly perky and round. Meet the butts and read their reviews of The Wedgie, below.
The Wedgie is available for $88 at levis.com.
Rita Kokshanian, Assistant Editor
Describe your butt: "Definitely big. It's biggest where it meets my thighs, smaller at the top, sort of like an upside down heart."
What type of jeans do you usually buy? "I always go for skinny jeans with some stretch, usually on the darker side. Low-rise jeans don’t fit me well, so I usually opt for a mid-rise or high-rise pair, and I like my jeans to be tight."
What are your thoughts on The Wedgie? "My first thought when I put the jeans on was that they were tight, but not tight like my go-to skinnies. These are 100 percent cotton, so there’s no give when you first pull them on—something I’m definitely not used to. They’re snug through the thighs and butt, and almost a little too tight at the waist (you don’t want to wear these to Thanksgiving dinner). I thought I would have to order the next size up, but throughout the day they stretched out a bit and definitely became more comfortable."
The verdict: Did they flatter your butt? "Yes. They made my butt look a little rounder and a little higher, something I’m definitely not opposed to."
Danielle Prescod, Accessories Editor
Describe your butt: "I describe my butt as the lost Kardashian. From the back, I am pretty pear-shaped."
What type of jeans do you usually buy? "I usually stick to a high-waist, moderately stretchy jean. I like to feel like I can move in my jeans but I also like to settle into them. I love jeans that are slightly cropped as well because I prefer to show off my shoes whenever possible."
What are your thoughts on The Wedgie? "Upon first glance, I thought they would be too small, but my normal denim size fit just right. I was concerned because I could tell they were designed to mimic the classic Levi's jean, which I've tried on before in so many different varieties and was never able to find one right for me, so I just gave up. These, however, fit totally fine. I noticed immediately that they have less stretch than what I am typically used to."
The verdict: Did they flatter your butt? "I wasn’t sure when I first looked in the mirror. I feel that from the side, they actually kind of flattened it, which I was not altogether opposed to. From the back, I thought there was weird bunching on my thighs that I didn’t like. But once I saw a photo of my butt in the jeans, I was pleasantly surprised. So now of course I'm questioning if in fact any of my own jeans actually make my butt look good without photographic proof."
Kelsey Glein, Associate Editor
Describe your butt: "Fairly non-existent. My butt is basically just an extension of my long-ish legs, so if anything I’d call it long and flat."
What type of jeans do you usually buy? "I definitely prefer high-rise jeans with plenty of stretch—usually in a skinny cropped or kick-flare style. The only time I go for a looser, low-rise fit is with a distressed boyfriend jean."
What are your thoughts on The Wedgie? "When I first put them on, I noticed the high-quality feel of the denim that gave the pants a certain stiffness. That being said, the waist was a bit too tight. Although I did notice that they loosened up as the day went on (or maybe I just got used to the pain)."
The verdict: Did they flatter your butt? "For sure. They lifted up the little bit that I have back there and made my assets look a bit more substantial as compared with my other jeans."
Katie Donbavand, Associate Producer
Describe your butt: "I love my butt. Oh, how I love my butt! I used to have a flat butt when I was super skinny, but in recent years it’s really come into its own, thanks to a squat routine and more cheeseburgers in my life."
What type of jeans do you usually buy? "I normally stick to dark washes and skinny silhouettes."
What are your thoughts on The Wedgie? "I was trepidatious about wearing such a high waist. I love that silhouette in suiting and skirts, but denim transports me back to the '90s when I wore them awkwardly in middle school and had no idea what I was doing. But I was surprised how much I liked them. In addition to the magic they worked from behind, they made my legs look longer and defined my waist. And you get instant cool girl points just by wearing them. In fact, one of the compliments I got was that I looked, 'very Brooklyn.' As for sizing, they do run a little small, so consider sizing up!"
The verdict: Did they flatter your butt? "You mean, did they make me love my butt even more? I think they did a good job of flattering, sure. With skinny jeans, the pockets tend to be lower, which can make you look droopy back there. These have high pockets that curve slightly to follow the natural badonk of your booty.
Another key element: The seaming helps emphasize your curves. They sort of pull up in between your legs—hence the 'Wedgie'—but not uncomfortably. That gives your butt a sort of extra definition."