Gap Old Navy Makes Mom Jeans

Nearly every denim makeover I’ve done ends with the same conversation.

“I had no idea what a difference it would make – I thought I was safe with Gap jeans!”


“Oh my goodness why didn’t anyone tell me I was wearing Mom Jeans?? I thought that as long as I was shopping at Old Navy, I was fine!!”

Gap and Old Navy denim.  A subject that I’ve long struggled over whether to address publicly or not.  I’ve revealed the truth about them one-on-one for quite a while, but have feared the backlash of addressing it here.

I know it’s hard to swallow, because we’ve all worn them at one time or another.

But I must say it, because I am committed to being honest with you in all matters of denim.

So read it fast – like ripping off a band-aid.


Gap and Old Navy sell Gateway Mom Jeans.

There.  It’s out there now, so let’s look at why.

I embarked on a reconnaissance mission to both stores accompanied by my dedicated husband/photographer, where I tried on every style of denim available.  I’ve gone through and analyzed the evidence collected, then matched them up with comparables in other brands.

But first, a few disclaimers:

1. Jeans can fit vastly differently depending on the body.  What may look awful on me could look good on you.  My points below are not blanket statements, just strong suggestions.

2.  We tried to match camera angles as well as possible, but seeing as how we were on an intensely covert operation and there was an especially nosy associate working the dressing room during our mission, not everything could be perfected as we wished.

3. Some people buy Gap and Old Navy because they are inexpensive.  Almost all of the jeans pictured can be attained for about the same price as a pair of Gap jeans. (My current favorite way to get designer jeans at half off or more is through Nordstrom Rack or their app, HauteLook.) Good fit does not have to be expensive.

Let’s start with Gap.

1. The first style I tried on was called Real Straight.

Gap Real Straight

These jeans, on the surface, do not qualify for the number one definition of Mom Jeans: pockets ending before the lower curvature of the butt.

However, they do have some concerning areas that clearly qualify them as Gateway Mom Jeans.  Specifically, they make an unattractive inverted heart betwixt the cheeks, and the pockets are SO DANG GIGANTIC that they could hold a small Llama.

Gap Real Straight Problem Areas

Perhaps on their own, it’s not clear enough.  For comparison, here they are as compared to an Antik straight leg:

Gap Straight Vs Antik Straight

Yes, that is the same butt.  No, I didn’t starve myself between the two photos.

2. Next I tried on Gap’s Always Skinny.

Gap Always Skinny

Again, these aren’t terrible.  But they’re not great.  They give me an extremely wideset rear view, and repeat the Kangaroo Pouch Pockets.

Notice the width shrinkage when compared to a well-shaped pair of skinny jeans bought from a neighboring mall store:

Gap Always Skinny Vs Express ReRock Skinny

You can see how the smaller pocket, in this case, gives the curve and lift to offer pep and life, rather than a flat, weighed down look.  Also, specifically on a skinny jean, the smaller pocket helps lessen the inverted triangle issue by separating the butt from the thigh.

Gap Always Skinny Vs Express ReRock Skinny Side

(You might remember that we discussed the flattering qualities of large pockets in a prior post.  While this is true, when the pockets are disproportionately dinasauric, the effect is not nearly so ideal.)

3. The next pair I tried on was the Gap Original Fit.

Gap Original Fit

Clearly, these are horrifying.  Especially note how the pockets are so wide-set that it gives me a third butt cheek, and the tapered yet loose leg is classic Mom Jean.

Gap Original Fit Problem Areas

Also?  No one should EVER need a zipper THAT LONG.

Gap Original Fit Zipper Length t

If you desire something classic yet modern and flattering forgoodnesssake, by all means go with a nice, conservative 7 For All Mankind.

Gap Original Fit Vs 7 For All Mankind

4.  Let’s move on.  Quickly.  To Gap Perfect Boot.

Gap Perfect Boot

I found these to be the least offensive.  However, the pockets were still too wide-set and oversized, once again offering the appearance of a supersized caboose.  Notice the immediate shrinking sensation when compared to a pair of Hudson Bootcut:

Gap Boot Vs Hudson Boot

5. Next: the Gap Curvy Fit.

Gap Curvy Fit

Oddly enough, the Curvy Fit seemed to take away all of my curves and conglomerate them into a giant pile of lumpishness.

If you have curves and need room for them to move and breathe, Miss Chic or LA Idol are awesome options with quite a bit more visual interest and flattering fit:

Gap Curvy Fit Vs LA Idol

6. My next fitting was in Gap Long and Lean.

Gap Long and Lean

This pair was the only pair that qualified beyond Gateway and straight into Mom Jeans – at least on me, as the pockets ended significantly before the lower curvature of my butt:

Gap Long and Lean Problem Areas

However, one of my best friends wears Gap Long and Lean, and I’ve always been puzzled as to how they look so great on her – especially since we even wear the same size.  So, in fairness, I present to you evidence that Gap jeans can look right on the exact right body:

Gap Long and Lean Right and Wrong Body

Let me assure you, though – I have counseled many former Gap wearers, and the friend pictured above is the exception, not the rule.

So if you don’t have that rare Gap-flattered body and you want to look Long and Lean, might I suggest Rock and Republic – notice the immediate leg-lengthening effect:

Gap Long and Lean Vs Rock and Republic

7. The last Gap style that I found was highly ironically named…the Sexy Boyfriend.

Gap Sexy Boyfriend


I SO wish I could have found these in my size to try on.



Flap Inner-Only Pockets.


Have you ever seen any man under 70 wearing jeans like this, let alone a sexy boyfriend??

I shudder to think.

But I did find one last treasure before I left Gap…

8. The Gap Denim Romper.

Gap Denim Jumper

Yes.  I was ashamed.

Gap Denim Jumper t

(And my cameraman didn’t like my visible bra strap.)

Just in case you missed it, the back waist actually qualifies this outfit as… Grandma Jeans.

Gap Denim Jumper Elastic Waist

I apologize to your retinas.

I rushed out of Gap and headed to Old Navy.

Which was somewhat akin to jumping out of the frying pan and into the nuclear incinerator.

I tried on every style that they had in both bootcut and skinny, but neither leg choice was better than the other.  So, to summarize, here are all three of their major styles in bootcut.

Old Navy Bootcut Comparison

The Diva was the least offensive, but still lacked style or a flattering cut.

The Dreamer copied Gap’s main problem of wide-set pockets and triple butt.

And the Sweetheart was unapologetically a hardcore Mom Jean.

Just in case you needed a healthy comparison, I offer them against 7 For All Mankind:

Old Navy Bootcut Comparison with 7 For All Mankind Stacked

Lest you think that I have somehow doctored my photos (which I have not) or that this information is only applicable to my body type, here are a few examples of others who have been freed from the noose of Gateway Mom Jeans:

Subject A, a close friend who had no idea how flattering and comfortable great jeans could be:

Makeover Old Navy to LA Idol 2

Subject B, a blog reader and mom of four kids:

Makeover Old Navy to LA Idol

And Subject C, a new Mom and blog reader from the other side of the country who got a long-distance makeover via the following before-and-after butt-texts:

Makeover Gap to Express Rerock

(Yes, I get butt-texts quite often, usually accompanied with the question, “Are these Mom Jeans?” If you need to butt-text me, just let me know and I’ll give you my number.)

After Subject C bought her jeans, she sent me a couple more full-length before and after photos (with an adorable baby leg included as a bonus):

Makeover Gap to Express Full

Makeover Old Navy to Express



Even if you look great in Gap jeans – even if they fit you perfectly, the pockets are proportionately correct, and the style was made for your body type, here is my biggest argument against Gap and Old Navy Jeans:

They stretch out. 




Gap and Old Navy Stretch Out

So even if they don’t look like Mom Jeans when you put them on, they will before the next episode of Dora the Explorer is over.

Looking for the rest of my denim posts? Here’s a list:

If you’re afraid you might have Long Butt, click here.
If you’re plus-sized, click here.
If you’re over 50 years old, click here.
If you want more specific tips and tricks to pick out the perfect jeans, click here.
If you want a list of every post I’ve ever written about denim, click here.

Other Posts That Might Interest You…

Red Light Therapy Review and Results


2,368 thoughts on “An Inconvenient Gap of Truth.

  1. I love this post. I have been wearing GAP jeans for a while and I didn’t realize how much better a butt could look!
    Could you give me some recommendations? I am 5 foot 4.5 inches and 140lbs. I have thicker thighs and butt so I have issues with the waist band in the back hanging open. I live in Boston.

    1. I would try Express Stella Cut if you want a less expensive option, but if you want to spend a little more, Red Engine is AMAZING – the waist comes back in but leaves room for hips/butt, and they never gap or wander south.

  2. Mom Jean wearer Victim # 1,899,523 is me and I am shameless admitting this after reading your fantastic post. Thank you for all the jean tips – I live in Arizona and wear capri’s / shorts more often than jean do you have suggested brands/fit for a size 14 or XL gal ? Thank you !! where I blog about beauty, bargains and being a mom <3

    1. I think we’ve already talked on Twitter, but I would check out Maurices also to see if they have any summer stuff – they have some really cute fits.

  3. I noticed something disturbing in the photos of subject A and C. Seems they are holding babies. The thing is that in the “bad’ photo their babies seem to have really pudgy short legs but in the “good’ photo the baby leg is longer and leaner. There are only two explanations here. Either these photos are of two different women or they have been stretched and manipulated to show an exaggerated difference in the jeans. Either way I question the validity of your “study.”

    1. LOL – yes, someone noticed the baby leg thing in the first 20 comments or so – I didn’t even notice it when I put the post together. The baby really was stretching his leg out in one picture and scrunching it up in the other, making it look chubbier. He did cast some doubt on my study which was a wholly unnecessary blow by such a tiny creature, but I assure you no photos were doctored. We even offered early on to retake the photos or to show the baby leg phenomenon on video. We should have done just that!

  4. The reason why GAP and Old Navy both have the same type of look is because they’re owned by the same mother company which started with GAP. Old Navy was their more urban attempt while GAP was the original store and aimed more for suburban shoppers.

  5. I am not a mom but as I am hitting my mid thirties and fourty is quickly becoming a reality my “cury” in all the wrong ways behind is very hard to find jeans for. I love jeans… but I always end up with a gap in the back at the waist and a giant looking behind. I am not a small girl, but neither am I huge! IF I could find a brand that could make my bum look even remotely better I’d be game!!! And cost efficient is always a concern. I am short and curvy. But curvy in a heart shaped kinda way… not in a nice junk in the trunk kind of way! :) Any suggestions would be amazing!!!! If you could shoot me your number I’d love to get some info from you on what brand you would recommend I try!!! Thank you sooo much.. This blog has been amazing to read and see!!!! Can’t wait to share with my friends!!! :)

  6. I just learned that every.single.pair……of jeans I own look like mom jeans on me. I’m 24 and am a mom only to a furry child (my puppy Nixon). I’m 4 ’11 and hate jean shopping because I can never find a pair that fits correctly or looks halfway decent. I am also 133lb ( trying to lose 2olb) and that doesn’t help my cause. Even petite jeans look horrible. The length is perfect but they are way too tight on my waist. The “normal” length jeans fit perfect on the waist but I have to cut a good amount of fabric and hem them up to fit length wise. What jeans brand would you recommend us short people.

    1. If regular jeans fit you in the waist, that’s a good thing, because they’re easier to find than petites! It’s hard to recommend a particular brand without more info, but feel free to send me pictures of you in your current jeans and I’ll see what I can recommend.

  7. I loved this post! I’m a 17 year old girl with an hourglass shape that I’m quite proud of, but it’s hard to find flattering jeans of any cut. I’m a size 13 in juniors and a 10 in women’s. I found a pair at white house black market that i like but I’m afraid I’ve been subjected to mom jeans at an early age :(. is there any way you can help me??

    1. if you want to send me some pictures of you in your current jeans and some more info about your shape and size, I’ll try to make some recommendations!

  8. So I have a little problem that I would love help solving. I don’t know brands either :). I have recently lost 30 lbs and have a weird body shape. No butt but I have a spare tire. In American eagle jeans I wear a 0. All 20 or so pair of jeans I’ve tried on at down east outlet that fit around the waist are too big for my butt. And all the jeans that fit my butt are either really low rise or too tight around my hips. Please help this mom!

    1. I have a friend that has this exact same shape. It has been hard to find the perfect jeans for her, but the ones that work best are definitely skinny jeans with a lot of stretch in them. The brands she’s loved have been Dylan George, Emerson Edwards, and James Jeans (all of these she got through me via Vault Denim).

      In general, look for smaller pockets or flap pockets, and very stretchy waists (something you get a lot of with skinny jeans.) If the waist is stretchy, you can size down to fit your butt.

  9. OMG!! Thank you for this. I am over forty (44) and feel that gap and old navy are the only stores I should shop in and I hate their jeans.. (I shouldn’t say hate.. that is a strong word) However, I do not like how I look in their jeans. There that’s better. I love the style of the jeans in your pics of LA Idol and Express Rock but think maybe I am to old for them Where would I find these types of jeans? I live in South Florida. Are they in more of the smaller retail stores like Garage? Please help an ole lady out to look at least a little hip….. :)

    1. The Express ReRock jeans are sold at Express, which can usually be found in Malls. The LA Idols were sold in Boutiques, but now they’re exclusively sold through Vault Denim reps. You can also find similar jeans at Buckle.

  10. What a great idea comparing jeans side by side. Is there a site that show what a man should look like in a pair of well fitting jeans? That way we would not look like we have no butt at all or the dreaded, butt looks like it hangs down to your knees.

  11. So glad I came across this!!! I have always worn ON jeans and thought I was in style. I pride myself on my fashion sense and frugality. Until I read this, and realized that maybe I’m not so “on” in the jean department. What?! I’m wearing “mom jeans.” The horror!!

    Well, today I came across some LA Idol jeans for CHEAP, and because I read your post, I knew I had to have them.! They are amazing on my figure! I never knew!!! Thank you! I am so glad I read this just last night, or I may not have realized how much I needed them. I can’t wait to wear them and feel so fab in them!!

  12. What do you recommend for someone who is 5 ft and wears a size 3? I can never find jeans that dont go past the heel of my foot by at least 3 inches and when I find the perfect leg length, they’re a size 0 or 1.

    1. I recommend being willing to hem! :-) It’s hard to find great looking Petite jeans, but being willing to get things hemmed (it’s fairly cheap) will open up a world of options.

  13. 1. I haven’t shopped for jeans at Levis, Lee, Gap, Wrangler or ON in decades because their cuts were never right. FTR, I am an average medium hourglass, size 8, 30W/32L, with a 10-12 inch difference in my bust-waist-hip measurements. I am very curvy.

    2. Two of the jean companies you recommend have failed due to lack of sales: Antik and R&R were sold to another company. R&R jeans are now sold at Kohl’s.

    3. Two of the jean companies you recommend have juniors’ sizing and styling: Silver & L.A. Idol. These styles are not recommended for mature women by professional stylists. Charla Krupp has sai, too much bling, too much topstitching = MDAL (mutton dressed as lamb.) Even the younger women on the makeupalley fashion board regard bedazzling, tricky washes and overt topstitching as dated & OTT.

    4. From 2002-2010, I owned a dozen premium jeans: PD&C, AG, 7FAMK, TR, Antik, Joes, James, Paige, Red Engine, Blue Cult, etc. All had rises of 8″ or lower. The manufactures listed 8″ rises as “high.” On my figure this is two handwidths below my natural waistline! These jeans drooped, had tight thighs, were immodest, needed a tight belt and a yank everytime I stood up. The Joe’s Muse & Honey styles I owned (supposedly good for curves) had serious waste gapping. The washes made me look 10 pounds heavier. These so-called bootcuts never balanced my hips; they gave me ice-cream cone legs. I was happy when I got rid of the entire lot of them and bought DKNY, which appear custom made for me.

    5. I challege you to explain why we never see your waist in your pictures (excluding the romper.) What are you hiding? Where’s your belt? Is there a flesh roll above that waistband? Why do you untuck your shirts & wear boxy banded sweaters in your photos? Is it because you are rectangular or shortwaisted? Do you truly have 10-12 inches difference between your waste and hips? If not, you aren’t a true hourglass.. That’s why those premium cuts work on you. They all have a square cut, rise below 8″, no contoured waistband, and a short crotch.

    6. IME pocket placement has more to do with rise height, styling & proportion, and less to do with with quality construction.. Pockets are sewn according to industry standards in proportion to waist and crotch seams. Paige Hidden Hills pockets are high in proportion to its 10 inch rise; True Religion Billy pockets are lower on the leg because the rise is 7-8 inches. Paiges cost around $200 and are widely coveted. This was the only style I didn’t purge from my closet. The Hidden Hills look sensational on me, but can make shortwaisted persons look squat. This doesn’t mean the jeans are poorly made.

    7. Some jeans are made of substandard fabrics (Gap, ON). Others are overdecorated (Miss Me.) Too many are revealing and immodest. Such jeans are bad taste and should be avoided by everyone regardless of age, figur, income, pocket placement, or how cute they look in pictures. The best solution is to forget about pockets and brand names entirely. Concentrate on your own figure. Look for the best proportion, minimalist design, no gimmicks, and a dark wash that makes you look expenive. Like Grace Kelly in her jeans.

    1. 5. You’re right. The world deserves an explanation. I’m hiding a pet baby alligator there – he wraps around my waist every morning as I’m getting ready. We’re tight, he and I. His name is Cecil. He’s a dear!

    1. What you want to find are jeans with small back pockets or pockets with flaps on them, and perhaps a skinny jean, depending on your hip width. Hope that helps!

  14. I found this on Pinterest and am very excited about buying new jeans. (after I have my baby of course) I never really buy Gap jeans but a friend of mine swore that they had the best maternity jeans ever so I bought a pair. They totally lose there shape and cause “poo pants”. After I have this baby and get back down to pre-pregnancy weight I am totally going to look for a place to buy these. They may be a little more expansive than I usually spend on jeans but after 5 kids I will spend it if it’s going to help make me get out of “mom jeans”. Thanks so much for revealing the truth!!!

  15. So…Lots on long bum, but not much on long “butt cracks” ugh my bum is fantastic in the right fit, however I have to stand straight up at all times and never walk, sit or bend at all or my abnormally tall butt crack is peeking out the top. How classy is that for a mom of an infant!? I wear jeans a lot even to work (when not on mat leave) and am always reminded by someone, hubby especially, that my lovely bum is taking a peak at the world! Any suggestions? Thank You in advance!

    1. This is a hard problem to solve, but fortunately, some jeans manufacturers are now starting to make jeans to go up further in the back than they do the front. If you hold a pair of jeans up and the back is higher, I would definitely try those!!

  16. So glad I read this!!! I am considered plus size, but have a heck of a time finding jeans that fit me in the right areas ( more bottom heavy in the thighs and hips). Any suggestions?? I’m located in Minneapolis, MN. Thank you!!!

  17. I’m 16, and at the beginning of the school year I bought two pairs of Old Navy jeans… I regret everything. I’m a tall-ish, thin girl and they made my legs and butt look RIDICULOUSLY chubby in comparison to my top half. I don’t really know what was going through my head when I tried them on, decided they were cute, and paid for them… I got home and for three months until I was able to afford a nice pair, I never knew what to wear and getting dressed for school in the morning was a horrendous task. I love both stores… but… not for their jeans, that’s for sure.

  18. Okay, so what brand/s do you recommend for 5’9″ and 165 lb. ugh, I must get rid of my old navy jeans! Please help. I wear a size 12.

    1. It’s hard to say without seeing pictures or having more information about your proportions and where you usually have issues with jeans. Feel free to send me more information, though!

  19. Are there any Vault reps in the Central Illinois area? I have a whole mess of gateway mom jeans I need to replace! :)

  20. I am 5’7″,weigh 165 and I am a pear shape. I never have great luck finding jeans! Thank you for this post. I’ll try harder now that I know thereby be hope.

  21. What style of jeans do you recommend for a flat booty? I am 5’10, 145 pounds with an athletic built body. I do not have many curves and did I mention no booty. What style and brand of jeans would you suggest?


    1. Definitely look for jeans with small pockets or flaps on the pocket. Also, stitching on the pocket can be helpful. I’d try Silver Suki Surplus first, then go from there. Hudson’s would also look great on you, but they are a little more expensive.

  22. What jeans would you recommend for someone who is 5’1.5″ about a size 9 in juniors. I’ve never had good luck finding jeans that both fit great and are affordable. I can usually only buy 2 maybe 3 pairs of jeans at a time and at the moment have none because I’ve lost so mic weight and can’t afford much.

  23. Interesting post! just found it on Pinterest. I’ve never heard of most of the brands you mentioned, except for Old Navy and Gap. I can’t wear either of them since they don’t fit. They’re both either too tight or too big and way too long -I’m short and even petites are too long for me! I have the problem of having a small waist and larger through hips, thighs ,and rear end so I have major “gappage” in the back waist. Gotta buy them to fit the butt! St. John’s Bay at JCP have always fit pretty good. BTW, I’m 48. Oh, and how do you take pictures of your backside? I can’t see back there :)

  24. Oh my god! Thank you sooo much! I am a 17 yr old girl whose mom absolutely refussd to get jeans anywhere else. Her arguement is that it’s not the jeans fault, it’s the person wearing the jeans. I will most definetly show this to her and hopefully convince her NOT to get me mom jeans before I even have a child (which I’m not planning on doing until I have a husband a decade from now!). And that last picture is priceles; mom always gets me a jean size too big because she doesn’t want me to “have sausage legs”. Thank you for validating me when I say that they stretch out! (Sorry anout the !!!, I am just very excited to finally make a point to her that her own peer group (not really she’s actually 60 and only wears skirts which is we have these fights) agrees with me.)

  25. Too bad you’re continually changing angles in each photo. I had hoped this would be a little less faked. Although based in fact, you already think gap/old navy can’t make a jean you’d like, so nothing will be good for you. And seriously, if you can find a jean that doesn’t stretch through the day, then you’re a saint. I just can’t understand hashing out tons of money for jeans that only look alright. None of those jeans were stunning on you and theyre all enough to pay for my car for a few months. Lol it’s ridiculous to think if you pay more you’ll look better. It’s just not true. And old navys target shopper is a mom, so if you think otherwhys youve had your eyes closed. No they arent great on everyone, but niether are any of the branda you listed. And on a side note, high zipper also means you have a less chance of muffin top, so dumb to think low rise is the ONLY way to wear “young” jeans. Real fasion is about how you look in something, not how much you paid, how others think you look, or, god forbide, where ypu bought them. Seriously, lets grow up and show people how things actually are.

  26. WOW! I am amazed (happy) to have found this info! I have wondered for several years why I can’t wear the Gap/Old Navy brands, things seem to spill over the top, or appear to be squished into places it didn’t come from before putting them on! I recently purchased two new pairs (Silver brand) from a store recommended by friends on a quick shopping trip – Maurice’s. I couldn’t stop trying on jeans, it was incredible the difference in the fit and feel of better quality jeans! I am only 44 and no longer will I look like I am wearing Gateway Mom Jeans, NEVER! Ewww! I can’t wait to check out these other recommended brands! Thank you so much for sharing this! Oh and please thank your husband, mine would never be this patient for the sake of others eyes and he’s a butt-man (just saying)! LOL!

  27. HOw happy am I to have read this? Very!!! I just spent my morning trying on over 20 pairs of jeans ( I haven’t bought new jeans in like 3 years) it was VERY depressing and I left the store empty handed. After my shopping disaster, I was left with the notion that my rear end was wide, flat and boxlike..(my husband even called me Sal-squarepants). I felt like I looked better naked!
    Now I realize that I was just trying on the wrong brands and that I should not lose hope. One day I WILL find the perfect fit that flatters my Assets and when I do I will be buying 10 pairs!!

  28. Okay but like….. a) the reason those pockets look so enormous on you is because you are tiny and you have no butt! For someone like me whos gifted in the butt department? Those pockets are placed perfectly and my butt looks freaking amazing in old navy jeans. Not to mention that your alternatives? With the bedazzled embroidery on the butt??? Godd lord I would much rather be wearing mom jeans that those jeans designed for 13 year old girls. Like really??? Adults do not wear pants with bedazzled butts. Just no. Make it stop.

  29. Lol! Loved this! I’m almost 40 and struggle between not wanting “mom jeans” and not wanting to look like I’m trying to regain my youth. :-/
    Thanks for the tip!
    I do have to say tho, the gap and old navy jeans were all too tight. You had the “horizontal wrinkle/buckle” of the denim indicating they were too tight.
    LOVED the young grandma romper! LOL! I can’t believe they sell those!!! Hahaha

  30. I have a really hard time trying to find jeans that fit me right. :( I’m 5’4″ and have to find my jeans in short length. I wear a size 30 or 31 and have a big butt. :p I don’t know what style works best for me.

  31. A lot of thought went in to this … thanks for your time!

    Any suggestions for someone:

    early 50’s
    little chunky around tummy, muffin top & thighs

    generally go for the boot cut style

    Thanks for you help!


  32. I wore Old Navy jeans this whole year. Gosh did i seriously look that bad?? I’ll definitely have to switch this year O,O
    Where can you find LA Idol jeans?

  33. My biggest issue is what I call “diaper butt!” My jeans tend to stretch out at the top of my butt, right below the waistband. I already wear low cut jeans, but when they stretch, I look like I am wearing a denm diaper :( I typically buy American Eagle jeans. Any suggestions?

    1. Try a different brand. AE is good, but they do tend to stretch out. Find a brand that doesn’t stretch out on you and you won’t have that problem! Red Engine is my favorite non-stretching brand.

  34. Bless you for posting this. I LOVE jeans, but hate shopping for them, because I always feel like my butt looks awful in them, for many of the above reasons you explained. I have obviously been looking in the wrong places!! You just made my life so much easier, and I love you for it!!

  35. But that low pocket and low waist seems so dated and early 2000′. The higher waist is the new fashion in my opinion. But its had to get it right. I’ve always liked Joes jeans. When it comes to denim you get what you pay for.

  36. Give me real, honest to goodness mom jeans any day of the week. What you showed does NOT qualify as mom jeans at all!!!! I have tried and tried to conform to the “in” look but they simply look awful! pockets below the butt cheeks is bizarre and I can hardly wait for people to wake up to the reality that they look like stuffed sausages.. with the lower cuts women are left to hiking up jeans like an over weight plumber trying to cover his but crack. The gap in the back of the jeans when ladies sit down is a clear evidence that the fit is not flattering. I have spent a year looking and trying multitudes of jeans on. they are consistently poor looking. The one and only exception was cost prohibitive for me.
    I am going to buy the tried and true “mom jean” today…one that fits at my waist…pockets are up where they should be..(classic styling’s from ll bean) .and I will look like a woman…not ….like a muffin….

  37. Love this & am forwarding to all my friends!
    ! After i saw this, I asked my husband, “Am I wearing mom jeans?”
    He replied yes.
    “Why didn’t you tell me!?”
    “Because you’re a mom”.

  38. my only comment is that you compare a lot of these to express jeans and while yes, express gives you a much more flattering fit is no where near the same price as old navy (60-80 vs 20-30?)

  39. Great.. So proud to find someone that has given hope to women with problem jeans. I am 48 and not the figure that I once had. I weight 127 and 5’4″ I can wear a size 28 in twisted style in Silvers and between a 28 & 29 in Miss Me jeans depending on the style and if I am bloated or not. I wear a size 8 in AE”s depending on style also. I love the Twisted Silvers, but I live in the country in a very rural area, so the nearest mall is like an hour and 1/2 in any direction to 3 different malls. I am slightly disabled and cant walk around malls all day without being in excurusating pain. I order a lot of jeans off ebay. So I was thinking about your denim vault. What do you recommend? In high hopes!

    1. Sorry I’m so late in responding! It’s hard for me to make recommendations without seeing pictures, but it sounds like you’re already getting some fabulous jeans! What in particular are you looking for?

  40. What jeans would you recommend for someone, like me that hardly has a butt? I want them to make it look like I have one, even if it’s from jeans

  41. a good cut and fit is key when buying jeans. i used to go to the shows in new york to purchase clothing for a denim store that i managed. not only was it fun, but it opened my eyes to many awesome denim brands. paige premium denim is my absolute favorite. i am a mom and wouldn’t even think about buying jeans at The Gap or Old Navy…i hate them! your blog is very informative and so true! nice work.

  42. Hi! This is amazing!!! I feel like I have NEVER found a pair of jeans that fit correctly. I am 31 and post-baby and trying to find jeans to not only fit my new body but that are also stylish and fit properly. I’m 5’2″ and 108 lbs. I really don’t have a butt or hips, just lean and straight ;) I just went to Express today after reading this and looked at the Stella jeggings but I’m just not sure since I was by myself. I would really appreciate any input! And I don’t mind to send a butt text :) You are AWESOME!!!

    1. P.S. Also, I used to purchase denim from the Limited, fit 678, but after wearing for about 30 minutes I have poop sag. I just need help! :)

      1. Try MissMe jeans. The best fit for small but and in my experience they never stretch out. I have had a pair for two years and still love and wear them.

        1. I agree–some call ‘Miss Me’ jeans the ‘jeans for women in the suburbs’…but I love them. They make me look great and last a long time.

        2. Miss Me are awesome! So is LA Idol, and I love Miss Chic and Tru Luxe! See if there is a Vault Denim rep near you, and you can try TONS of them on to get the perfect fit…and even have a party at your home and earn yourself a free pair! I’m doing it and loving helping women look good, all over the country!

    2. I’m 31 and have 2 kids. the ONLY jeans that I have ever found to fit right and not make me feel like I’m wearing mom jeans is American Eagle.

      1. I second American Eagle. I love them, even after 2 kids. They don’t stretch out for days. Yes, days. I don’t wash my jeans everyday and you don’t have to unless you buy Old Navy! hahaha

        1. I third American Eagle! I’m 44, three kids, 5’1 108 lbs. They make me feel like I’ve got a teenager’s butt. They don’t stretch, the fabric quality and texture is fantastic, and they are properly faded and grommetted. And I almost never have to have them altered, which is AMAZING when you are 5’1. Finally, very affordable at only $40-60.

      2. Same here. I’m 38, (although I Dont feel or look 38 lol) with 2 teenage daughters. I love American Eagle jeans. I’m 5’3″ and findjng jeans that fit in length is a job in itself, average is too long and petite too short, but AE jeans are the ONLY jeans so far that work, I buy Petite length and they fit perfect :) they are also the only brand that mg oldest who is now 19 can get the best fit with for length. and I loved this article by the way :)

    3. Try Levi’s! They have this Curve ID system, and it sounds like you’d qualify as a “Slight Curve.” That means that they’re shaped different in the hip and waist.
      I”m a Slight Curve too, and I’ve found that they have a slightly bigger waistband, but still tight in the hips and even a little smaller in the upper thigh. It’s super helpful if you find that jeans that fit on the waist are too big in the leg, or if they fit in the legs, too small in the waist.
      Basically, when I wear a Slight Curve it’s like I’m wearing a size 2 jean from the hips down, and a size 4 at the waist band. In other jeans I have to wear a 4 and they never fit quite right…
      Slight Curves come in all the styles (skinny, slim, straight & bootcut) and both low rise and mid rise. They can even “calculate” your curve in the store!

      Hope this helps!

    4. for petites also trey white house black market, some of their pants are perfect for me in the 00/short – let me say i am nowhere near a ZERO but thats the size that fits (im 5’2″ – 116lbs and muscular). I was pleasantly surprised by the fit of the black almost denim jeggings…my go to pant.. fyi -to give an idea of my size i wear a 25or 26 in hudson bootleg.

  43. This entire post screams the truth haha! I’m 20 and my mother still thinks she has the authority to tell me where to shop. She ALWAYS picks Gap. I humor her and we go in and I try on countless numbers of pants there. I feel the exact way as everything you said, especially the long pockets and insanely long front zipper hahaha

  44. I have nice legs and arms, unfortunately my belly is round with big chest. I can never find anything that I think fits right. For the shirts to fit my chest the makers must think I have to have the biggest neck and shoulder in the word, and pants in my waist size is always short.

  45. Hey oh my goodness !!! Never read something as helpful !
    I have such a hard time finding the perfect fit as I’m tall, yet curvy. My
    Butt is a super bubble butt! As fantastic as people find it
    It’s annoying trying to keep my jeans glued over my crack yet not to big or to small. Help!!

  46. Do you have suggestions for those of us without a backside. I’m talking so flat you look like a frog standing up. (find a picture, it is hilarious- when it is a frog, not for a woman)

    1. I have NO butt.. the frog description is perfect. .. i buy Miss Me or Express jeans… they both fit me well…. I buy my Miss Me jeans at either Dillards or our local boot barn store.. pocket flaps are the best..

  47. Well!!! I HATE shopping ..why because you try on stuff and it all looks bad!( had a friend say ” your jeans look hideous…I can find you the perfect pair” after trying on 50+ jeans she says they all look bad! but these two are the least bad

    I enjoyed your jean shots -because i am a firm FIRM believer you shop for your body not what someone else has on! or whats in – you buy what you love not like …
    I wish someone knew what looked good on me and had a store filled so i could just go and get…..I would love someone to pre shop then i go and get like what not to wear but i dont like the shopping part
    If you are ever in Saskatoon Sask…a city with 5 tiny stores and nothing to buy
    COME ONE DOWN and get me

  48. Hey! I have been doing a lot of research on Vault Jeans lately and I am seriously considering doing it, but I have some questions. Are all the of the jeans Vault brand jeans or are there the more mainstream designer jean brands too like Rock and Republic and Miss Me? I have noticed a lot of unhappy comments concerning the vault brand jeans specifically because the bling falls off and they stretch out. What has your experience been?

    1. No, Vault’s main brands are not Vault Brands. In fact, they’ve quit manufacturing all but the best lines of their jeans, because they realized that people wanted the designer brands.

  49. Gap use to make the most comfortable jeans I have ever worn. USE TO!! I’m gonna age myself here so here goes, about 13 years ago they carried what they called a summer weight denim jean. It was a thinner denim that was prewashed and it was soooo soft, it truly was a great summer denim. And it fit me, you all know how hard it is to say “I found the perfect jeans and they fit ME!!” Well, yea me!!, then they quit carrying them. That was 13 years ago, I am 47 and still looking for the perfect jeans. I live in my jeans daily, so buying expensive, brake the bank jeans are out of the question. I own a small ranch and work on it daily, I have owned just about ever jean brand known to man, stopping short of paying over $150 a pair. I refuse to pay that because if I do ever find that perfect pair of jeans, I will need about ten pairs to get me through a year or sometimes just a season. I have no hips but have a bubble butt (my mom says that) and I need a 36″ inseam and really could live without all the bling and fancy stitching, that gets to hurting the butt after awhile or gets hung on something. Plus I am not a size 2, more around a 13-14. I am open for any suggestions.

    1. I have a pair of those jeans and I love them! Unfortunately for me, they are a size 2 and I let myself get up to a size 6 after having my daughter! I am keeping the jeans because one day I will wear them again! They are beyond comfortable and haven’t found a great pair of jeans since! We should start a petition to have them come back in the stores! Hehehe

      1. Keep em!! I did, a pair of Lawman’s. I bought right after high school. I love those jeans and finally this past spring (5 kids including 2 sets of twins) later I am wearing them and rocking them again!!!1

    2. Try Lucky Jeans. I buy them at Ross or Tj Maxx. I am a size 12, and 5’9″ and they seem to fit the best. They are too expensive to buy else where.

    3. Try cowgirl up jeans. Ues they are slightly more expensive but they fit and last for a long time. I am also a rancher so I too live in my jeans everyday. I have had several pairs of cowgirl ups last for 5 yrs-they are my favorite brand to ride in, fence in, work in. They stretch in the right places and no mom butt (I have 4 kids) they also come in long inseams. The other pair that has lasted me quite awhile are Cruel. Yes very expensive but again worth it. The only thing I dont like is that all the bottoms have the slit cut in them & they are always getting stepped on or drug through the manure.

  50. Rachel help! Queen of the mom jeans here, I love all the advice and my teen age girls would love to see me in updated jeans, But I can’t find LA Idol or Rerock in stores. How will I know if they are a good fit if I can’t try them on? Not sure I want to pay for multiple shipings to get the correct size and fit.
    Do you know of stores that carry these brands?
    If your ever visiting Colorado, we would love to have you over for jean fashion help.

    Queen of the mom jean, Margi

    1. So sorry for the late reply – this got lost in my inbox!

      ReRocks are available at Express Stores. LA Idol are harder to find in stores – Vault Denim reps carry them, and sometimes they can be found in Glik’s department stores.

      Hope that helps!

      1. I have also seen LA Idol at western stores like cavenders. If you do try on a pair you like of whatever brand, but can’t stand the price, try eBay. They list measurements, style, etc. sometimes even the year they came out.

      2. has lots of LA Idol – I’d say to go and try on a pair of Silver’s (which is my normal fav jean) and they are very similar in sizing/fit to those. For example, I’m 5’7″ and about 140lbs and wear a size 29 in Silvers & LA Idol size 9. So 29 = 9. Be warned that the LA idols are very long in the boot cut jeans – I’m talking like 35″ so you’ll probably have to hem them or wear with boots. The skinnys are shorter though (but I haven’t bought any of those). Hope that helps a little!

      3. Vanity stores ( sometimes carry LA Idol jeans.

        Have you ever tried the Vanity brand jeans? I’ve heard good things

  51. I have always thought that Lucky Jeans were a good fit for me. I happen to be curvy. Small waist, big butt and healthy legs. I find that if I buy them snug, then after a good wash and wearing them for an hour or so they fit perfectly. No saggy butt. Recently I have discovered Joe’s Jeans and I love them. I also feel they flatter my curvy frame and they fit nicely in the waist with no gapping. I can buy Joe’s and Lucky jeans at Nordstroms Rack, Marshalls and TJ Maxx for much less than they sell for in stores, which is around $100 a pair or more. I bought a great looking pair of boot cut Lucky’s this weekend for $39 mfg tag said $110. I also bought a great pair of Michael Kors skinny jeans, which normally I would never do, but I just bought two great pairs of boots, so that is the only way I would wear “skinny jeans” but mfg price tag on both of those pairs said $110 and I got them for $39. You can get great jeans for much less, you have to hunt and you HAVE to try them on. I always use this rul of thumb too…. healthy bottoms needs jeans with big back pockets. Small back pockets on jeans makes you butt like bigger then it really is.

    1. I second this! I have 4 kids and also have small waist, healthy legs and butt and I LOVE Lucky jeans! I can wear the same pair for 2 days and they don’t lose their shape! Try the Sophia fit, it is best for us curvier moms. Love your post! So true :)

      1. Last year I bought the Lucky Jeans Sophia bootcut jeans at Costco. I don’t remember the price – somewhere around $30. They might still carry them!

  52. I have a hard time finding jeans that fit me. I pretty much have an inverted butt and love handles. NOT a great combo. If it fits the butt I have major muffin top, if it fits my butt I have major saggy butt. HELP ME!!!!!!

    1. I’m not sure what size you are, but look for jeans with a stretchy waistband and smaller pockets, or pockets with flaps. But especially the stretchy waistband – that helps not create muffintop.

  53. I’m reading these while wearing Old Navy jeans thinking “Oh my God, please tell me my butt doesn’t look like that”. I will say, however, that these jeans were ONLY purchased from Old Navy because they were cheap, and comfortable and I was only about 3-4 weeks postpartum, and was not interested in spending more than the $12 I spent on them. But now, NEVER AGAIN will I wear these out of the house.

  54. I love this post, this is what quality writing is all about, and the whole “butt” posy, well, it’s awesome that you shared this, I really like the entire post as a whole and will make sure to keep reading your blog!

  55. I just finished reading your article on gateway mom jeans and I laughed so hard that I woke up my kids!! This is so true. Love your writing style, hilarious!:).

  56. Hi,
    Thank you so much for doing this. I now know why my butt always looks flat and wide. Where can I buy/find these jeans you have that aren’t old navy or gap? I know the rock and republic is kolhs but that’s it.

    Thank you!

  57. Ooohhhhhhhhhhh myyyyy…. you need to come visit me.

    I have a LARRRRRGE bum. And (thanks to my 4 preschoolers) a rather “lumpy” belly. I’m only 30 and would love to wear non-mom jeans…but…I just can’t handle the coin slot garbage…and don’t even get me started on the muffin top…so…to old navy I go. Any suggestions?

  58. Thank you for taking the time to do this. I will have to do some research myself to find the jeans that truly look best on me….46-year-old mother of two.

  59. Thank you so much for this expose’. Wow, it’s hard to believe the difference and I was totally blown away that you are a smallish person, when I saw the photos of you in the jumpsuit. I definitely will use your tips while out jean shopping. Thanks again! I’m a fan :)

  60. Would love to know your suggestion for what I should try. I’m 30 years old with 4 kids – 4 pregnancies has not been kind to my once size 2 body. I have a medium size bum to large- the pregnancy tummy flabby skin I’m trying to hold in and love handles. I think I’m about a size 14. Any suggestions?

  61. Maybe it’s me, but as a 34 yr. old mother of 5, I prefer to have a “mom butt” as opposed to wearing jeans that my babysitter would love. Let them be young, let me be wise (ha). I am finally happy with who and where I am, and have no desire to give up those comfy jeans I’ve earned :)

    1. Amen!!! Maybe moms in their 20’s can get away with wearing bling all over their butt, but whenever I see a mom in her 30’s or up wearing super tight jeans with “look here” sparkle butt I think, “Early mid-life crisis!!”

  62. OMG! I just lost 30 lbs and the first thing my husband said was great now get rid of those MOM jeans. I thought he was being a jerk until I saw this on Pinterest an realized I owned most of these jeans and now went to buy more in a smaller size just to find in 30 minutes they were Ill-fitting. I have since returned all of them am headed over to Buckle. Yes I spent more but it was worth every penny. I look great and others have noticed. Thanks for waking my ass up! In my jeans too!

  63. I am 5′ tall, 95 pounds, and 52 years old … size 0 in many brands are almost too big, and junior sizes are simply styled too young. Any specific brand suggestions?

    1. I would check out some department store brands, like J Brand, Red Engine, Lucky Brand, and Joe’s Jeans. The trick is going to be finding them in petites, but they’ll look amazing on you, they have much smaller sizes, and they’re not styled too young.

  64. Best thing happened to me ever , my wife told me to read this article … Saying “You Were Right!” We went on to talk about how I told her honestly a few years ago that some of her jeans she was wearing had a WRONG fit. I helped her pick out the good stuff. Well it turns out all those jeans that were so wrong are GAP.

  65. too funny. You are so hilarious. i loved this entry. I myself do not buy gap or old navy jeans, only because i have found them, dare i say, too blah for me. I am constantly looking for jeans that fit me because I am 1. short (5 ft. ) and 2. big butt-ed. ha. but now that i have read this i think i will re-examine that jeans i have now (rue 21) and see if they are at least more flattering to me, as they should be based on all your pointers. :D

  66. Ahaha this was super-hilarious I love your scientific style ;) . But I feel so silly that I stumbled upon it while searching for Gap coupons so I could buy some new jeans!! Now you got me second-guessing. Tell me the coated biker legging jeans are cool, right??! Eh, what do I know. I’m a 30-something mom of 2. Damn!!

  67. I’m a teenager and I wear Old Navy jeans because that’s cheapest. All the jeans I wear are from Old Navy. I have an hour glass shape but no idea what looks good on me! Old Navy gives me no shape for my butt and always so baggy after 5 minutes of wearing them! The sizes I wear fit my waist, but not my bottom. What stores can I go to that will give me the perfect fit and around that price? It’s so embarrassing!!

    1. American Eagle has jeans around $25-30 and they have buy one get one 50% off sales. So worth the extra $5-10. This is coming from a dedicated O.N. shopper too!

  68. First off, I like how your camera man censors your bra strap but is okay with posting pictures of your butt. ( I found that very funny). Now, my problem with this article is that you compared it on only one or two people. There are many women out there with many different body types. What works for you may not work for everyone else and vice versa. As a woman with an ASS, I find Old Navy jeans flatter my body and work perfectly for women with more volumptious figures. That is not the case with you (no offense). So maybe you should’ve showed different many different moms with many different body types to portray a more realistic sense for your readers.

    1. I have an ‘ass’ and healthy legs and DESPISE Old Navy personally, I think that’s why she said its not true for all. DEFINITELY a great article of more of things to look for! I hate that ON jeans made my butt look sardined in….instead of just tamed. The curse of a big butt and 27″

  69. I went in a similar mission to find the perfect jeans for me, at a price I could afford, one Saturday. I went to Hollister, Gap, Old Navy, Express, and American Eagle. I tried on every style at each store and found “The Artist” at American Eagle to be the most booty-flattering and leg slimming. I really think everyone should go to multiple stores and even have a second set of eyes with them. Only
    Go to the stores you know you can afford to shop at, and resist the urge to buy the styles just because they’re in sale. 3 pairs of crappy jeans are still not worth one great pair you can still afford.

  70. This post was awesome! I loved it! I started buying cheap jeans and they made me look so lumpy and didn’t accentuate the pretty nice curves and legs I have! I started buying nicer jeans from more trendy places and tried on quite a few different styles and found the perfect kind from American eagle and levi’s! American Eagle will always be my favorite but I refuse to ever go back to my sad butt days! Great article and Read! And the pocket detail was perfect!

  71. YIKES!!! Some are bad, some hideous!!! But I must really be in “mom’ mode because I liked how some of the mom jeans looked. I don’t like how some of them make you look like your butt is doing the splits. I don’t like the skinny jeans…looks like the rear waist sags and they’re sucking in the butt in most that I’ve seen on people.

    I did find Levi’s 529’s a few years back and fell in love with them, but they quit making them. I was only able to get 2 pair in my size. I also love Lawman’s. (expensive but I’ve had a pair for 20 years and no I haven’t worn them the entire time, but I’m back in them now).

    Maybe you can send me that number and give me a butt makeover. From my response I think everyone would agree I probably need it.

    1. Oh my gosh! 529’s were awesome! I was wondering why I couldn’t find my favorite jeans anymore. I’m a 34 year old mom of 5 and hate mom jeans with a passion. I bought a pair of L.A. Idols. They fit like a champ when I first put them on, but after about 20 minutes, they’re sagging like no other pair of jeans I’ve ever seen. I’ve come to loathe those jeans. Guess I’ll be doing some new year shopping and looking for good jeans again. I really wish they still had the 529’s…..those jeans were comfortable, didn’t lose their shape and made my butt look fabulous, even after the first 4 kiddos!

      1. I can’t remember if I have 529’s or not. I think I have some 526’s. My absolute FAVORITE was an old pair of 515’s that looked AWESOME and felt great. However, I wore them out and when I went to rebuy them they had changed everything about them (fabric, style, etc), while still calling them a 515! I refuse to throw them away even though they have a hole in a place that doesn’t allow them out of the house. I have moved on to American Eagle jeans. My 14 year old loves them for her and for me which is saying something because we have 2 different body types! The pockets are not too fancy and they can be worn at least 3 times before washing with no sagging. That is extremely helpful to me as I have small hips and they will just fall right off if they stretch out….

  72. It should also be noted that do not worry about the size in the jeans. Buy what fits and it will make your body look so much slimmer Too tight of a jean only emphasizes problem areas.

  73. First, let me say thank you for perhaps the most comprehensive comparison on jeans I have ever seen Ever. All these companies ought to pay you for doing these side-by-side comparisons.

    Second, I must thank you for the best laugh I have had in a long time. When you wrote, “Clearly, these are horrifying.” I nearly fell out of my chair laughing. I would say I almost wet myself, but most of us are Moms here and, well, wetting ourselves might be a given! :-)

    Anyway, THANK you for the giant bell laugh-I really needed it today!


  74. I had an amazing pair of jeans that totally fit my butt and made it look awesome, then the most horrible thing happened….I got the dreaded inner thigh rub hole. I can’t find the same style, shockingly…they’re out of production so I had to buy another pair, Le Sigh. Purchased uber mom jeans (last resort, can’t have upper, INNER thigh meat squeezing out your rub hole) and I hate them! Came home and dug out two pair of vintage Levi’s, (tight but who the hell needs to breathe deep) and because they were the …gasp… super straight 80’s legs, I whipped out a pair of duller than styrofoam scissors and gnawed 3″ slits up both sides on both pair. I’d be much happier if these were 2″ longer as I wear combat boots (closet bad ass) but hey, it’ll work till I find that next amazing pair of britches!

    1. There is a place called denim therapy online that will fix any holes and you totally can’t tell. I’ve sent about 6 pairs there and recommend it. It’s kind of expensive but if they are your favorite jeans and you have trouble finding another pair like them, it is worth it. Look them up online!

  75. This an awesome article, but what advice do you have for us old moms who are built with skinny legs and a belly thats bit too big to wear those hipsters? Every pair of jeans I buy rolls down. and if they fit my stomach, they are way to big in the legs! errr! still so frustrated!

    1. Definitely look for jeans that have a stretchy waistband – not elastic, just stretchy – they’re out there! Also, some jeans are proportionally bigger in the stomach – William Rast is FANTASTIC for this, and still has proper pocket placement. Also, I would try skinny jeans – not jeggings, but skinny jeans. That way the leg won’t overpower your leg, and the waists are usually stretchy, so you can size up to fit your waist without losing your legs.

    2. I have the same problem in that my hips are boyishly skinny, and I carry any extra weight I have on my tummy, so if I get jeans to fit my waist they are too big everywhere else. I love the American Eagles, and I have had good luck with SOME pairs of Eddie Bauer’s slightly curvy line. I cannot do their curvy as one pair is too tight and I swim in the next size up.

  76. What do you think about jeans from Target? Specifically,Mossimo® Women’s Bootcut Denim (Modern Fit) and Merona® Women’s Skinny Denim Jean (Modern Fit).

  77. This is hands down my favorite blog article ever. I’ve had trouble finding jeans that fit my wife well, and do her backside justice. But this comparison makes being a husband (a good husband)(a good “knows how to shop for wife’s jeans” husband) easy. Some of those jeans above are terrible, but the antiks, rerock., la idol, wow – you’re a real distraction! (Trying to sound complimentary and not creepy) And the other commenters’ post with pictures are very helpful. I just pick the bad looking jean on the left (ones that are similar to my wife’s troubles) and then whatever pair is on the right side (cuz they look amazing)…. sorry, gotta go shopping. I’m a fan of your site now, Maybe you could do another article on dress pants.

  78. This is amazing, maybe one day when my kids are older I’ll be able to afford these. Right now I don’t even spend gap on jeans (I might buy old navy on sale), I buy target jeans (or gasp, occasionally Walmart, I just don’t like their quality so it’s not often). Luckily I don’t even wear jeans often, I love living in the south

  79. Just found your sie and love it! I am in desperate need of help! We are very tight financially, so I usually just wear what is given to me…but I am ready to BREAK FREE! I want jeans that will flatter me. My problem is I am 5 ft. Tall, have a “bubble butt” and carry most of my weight on my stomach. So what fits my waist/tummy, is way too long (even short styles) or too big on my thighs. Or what fits length wise, squishes everything up top. Where do I start to look for pants to flatter this body, that carries short styles, that is fairly affordable? (Like 30 dollars ish…max)

  80. Don’t get jeans from the brand SO at Kohls. I have two pairs and I don’t like how they fit and look on me. The one pair fits the waist but is too short in length. The other pair makes me look fatter than I really am.

  81. how about jeans that look good without all that crap embroidery on the butt? There is really nothing more mom than that!!! It screams I’m trying not to look like a mom so i wore these “cool’ jeans. I want plain pockets that fit well. And I’m willing to pay. What do you suggest?

    1. YES!!! I loathe pocket embroidery. Say what you want about the size of Gap’s jeans (and you’re right) at least they had the good sense to leave them plain.

  82. I found this article to be very interesting but I am now really confused. I have always been a skirts/dresses person but recently bought my first pair of pants after encouragement from some of my friends. I find them very comfortable but took a lot of getting used to. I kept getting comments like “wow! – but you don’t wear pants” I am now thinking of buying a pair of jeans – which will be my first pair since I was about 8! I don’t think I will like the image of skinny jeans – at 35 and with generous hips they probably wouldn’t look right. I am fairly tall and wonder if I should go for Levis Curve. I would appreciate some suggestions before I look stupid in a jeans store

    1. I’m SO sorry I took so long getting back to you – I really let my email go through the holidays.

      I’m not a huge fan of Levis – they don’t look great on everyone. I would try Express, or if you’re willing to pay, go to Nordstrom Rack or a similar store and try on some designer jeans. They’ll be half off there and they are SO worth it. Joe’s Jeans would be great on your body type.

  83. What a wonderful post. If you every do one for plus size women I’m all over it. Most of the stores mentioned don’t carry my size, and even stores catered to bigger woman you either get mom jeans or so tight it’s inappropriate.

  84. I’d love it if you posted this with some price comparisons! I’m often in Gap/Old Navy because it’s really all I can afford. I did manage to snag a pair of sevens at a thrift store and I LOVE them, but can NO WAY afford them new.

  85. I am petite (5’0′) and wear size 6-8. I am very straight figured (not much if any difference between waist and hips). I also have what’s been referred to as ‘pancake butt’ i.e. flat. I have had pretty good luck in dress pants with Express ‘Editor’ fit but still have a terrible time with jeans. My biggest problem is that they all seem to be cut so curvy that when I get them to fit around the middle/waist, they are baggy in the hips/butt and thighs. I am a dancer by hobby and have fairly muscular thighs and cannot stand jeans that fit too tight on my thighs. Do you have any recommendations? I know I will likely have to take to be hemmed since even the ‘short’ are too long!

  86. The funniest part about all of this is Old Navy maternity jeans actually look really cute! No mom jeans in that department, go figure :) I used to LOVE American Eagle jeans, fit perfectly and never stretched out. Then I had children and the low rises just aren’t attractive on postpartum pooch. Any suggestions for a mid-rise that doesn’t look like the waistband is encroaching on my bra?

  87. Hi! I had this revelation way later in life than I should have… My little sister went on a Hautelook and Ebay spending spree a few years ago, and in the process racked up some major debt. She bought a variety of items, but mostly “designer” jeans. I have a lot of great feedback as a seller on my Ebay account, so I offered to sell a lot of these jeans, so she could recoup some money and pay off her debt.

    I had my husband take pictures of the jeans on me from every angle and I first listed them on my FB page, tagging my sister in them in case her friends wanted to purchase anything. People were commenting on “her” great a$$ like crazy. I mean, that’s why guys were saying. It’s like they couldn’t stop themselves. Many of my female friends commented on how great the jeans looked from behind. I looked at the pictures with a different perspective, (knowing it was my 33 year old butt in the pictures, and no my 23 year old sister’s butt)… These jeans looked amazing on me. Antik, Rock and Republic, Paige, Rich and Skinny, Lucky Brand, True Religion, Mavi, Ernest Sewn… How could I have not paid attention to this! Then I realized that I had never seen what I looked like in my gap jeans from behind.–not really. I understood now that there was no way to really know unless I could see the photographic evidence. I tried on every pair of jeans I owned and had my husband take pictures. Oh my, it was a sh__ show. I got rid of all my jeans, and bought some of my sister’s from her. I then realized that I could some great deals on “broken in” designer jeans on Ebay. Hautelook, Rue La La, and Ideeli are also great resources for discounted designer jeans. It is nice to try them on first, and I was lucky to have my sister’s jeans in tons of brands and a few different sizes, so I could determine my best size, styles, and brands. I can purchase online, and get it right almost every time! (If not, I sell them on Ebay, making sure to list exact measurements, and style details etc. for the next person).

    Whew… I lack brevity! Great blog post!

    1. WHAT AN EYE-OPENER! Although I do own a 2 pair of Gap jeans, I know they’re not the most flattering on me, they just happen to be what I own that happen to fit. I’m 41 years old, and 5 ft tall and about 126 lbs, with a slightly bigger belly than I’d like, but it is what it is! My issue has been knowing that I don’t want to wear “mom jeans”, but at the same time, knowing that I’m entirely too old and curvy to wear “Jr’s jeans”, so I’ve been stuck in “Jean Limbo”! Though some of the styles you showed were a bit too “trendy” for me, I did love the Hudson’s you showed, as well as the Antik. Your photos were inspiring, to say the least. I’m so excited that you actually HAVE a butt AND thighs and aren’t stick-thin with no curves, as it made your article way more relevant to me personally, and I thank you so much for that! I even had my (don’t get weirded out) husband come and “check out” your butt in some of the photos to see if he saw the same differences that I did, and he did! I HATE shopping, but your photos helped him see what a difference rear pockets can make, and now he’s in a position to actually help me when I’m brave enough to venture out to buy some updated jeans! Thanks again, really great job!!! :)

  88. hi there!

    mom of 2 here, in Vermont. 5’5″ and about 160lbs……currently wearing GAP jeans and after i read your blog post i thought WOW, i had no idea i was wearing the wrong jeans! what a difference it makes! so i wear GAP curvy jeans, in 12 ankle length. any suggestions as to what brand/style i should try?

    i look forward to hearing your advice!!

  89. If you need butt-text (about jeans!! :D) from brands in Canada let me know-I’ve tried them all and have more jeans than any human being should as I too am on the quest of fining the perfect pair.. Sadly!!
    27 pairs and counting!! Sad *hangs head in shame*

  90. This is too funny. I never buy jeans from gap and old navy. However recently old navy had some stretchy python prints and I picked up a couple pairs and I love them. Very rare! I love forever 21 jeans and they are $10.80!

  91. Wow- totally enlightened today. Never knew I was wearing the wrong jeans, I currently wear jeans from Maurices and while they aren’t horrible, I definitely need assistance. I am turning 40 this year and don’t want to be the old frumpy mom. I am 5’4″ and 140lbs, usually wearing a 6-8. I have a smaller waist (31″) for my hips (37″) and hefty thighs (34″), and not skinny calves either. We live in a small area, so I don’t have access to a lot of choices. We have Aéropostale, AE, Buckle, Express and Maurices about an hour away. Suggests for me on where to start? HELP!

  92. Where can we find these non “mom jean” jeans? I live about an hour south of Atlanta and we don’t have an express and I’ve never heard of the other brands you mentioned. We have a Dillard’s and a Belk – those are our 2 big department stores. I mostly buy Gap jeans because they are the only ones I have found that I feel like fit me well. I need short length jeans which is hard to find. When I have looked for jeans at Dillard’s I can never find any size 6 in short length that I like. I am hard to fit (smaller waist than hips) so I have never had luck buying clothes online as they never end up fitting when I get them. So without having to make a trip to atlanta for jeans what is my next option?

    1. Dillard’s and Belk should carry some good jeans! Check their designer jeans sections, and especially the clearance section – you can get good deals. Also, don’t be afraid to hem – it’s relatively cheap and really can open up your options to get great jeans. That being said, Red Engine makes my favorite jean, which sometimes comes in petite and ankle length, and they have a smaller waist than hips. They’re fantastic, but hard to find in stores (boutiques tend to carry them), but Amazon has some and a lot are on sale:

  93. The only problem I have with the “designer” jeans, or the ones the fit more properly are that the back pockets have designs or flaps and I HATE jeans with pockets like that, why can’t they have plain pockets?

    1. Check out Joe’s Jeans, Seven for all Mankind, Citizens of Humanity, AG Jeans, and Red Engine Jeans. All FANTASTIC jeans with very minimal or no stitching at all on the back pockets.

  94. I just bought Earl Jeans at Peebles Department store – with a coupon they were less than $20. I took pics too and NO mom butt! Hopefully they hold their shape…

  95. I am a 28 year old mom of 2. I am having a really hard time recently with my “new” body and can’t find any jeans that fit “right” and are comfortable for chasing after a 3 and 1 year old. I get so frustrated when trying on any pants and have pretty much been buying the first pair that fit in the waist/butt/thigh area without even bothering to look in the mirror because I’m so frustrated. My current go to jeans are from Old Navy because they are cheap and have a slightly higher rise in the waist that covers the belly pooch. I would love some advice on a good pair of jeans that might fit my body better. I am 5’3 and weigh 150. I have a descent amount of booty and my thighs are not very skinny. Any ideas? And also, what are the best stores to find these? I am pretty naive when it comes to shopping and “brand name” clothes. Thanks!!!

  96. GREAT article as I went through this after my 3 boys! Faves were definitely Miss Me, after my pregnancies and getting back down to my normal 5’3 125 with a butt, but it seems they changed the fit a few years back. Now I LOVE LOVE LOVE my Rock 47 jeans!

  97. I’m a mom on a budget so I can’t afford ridiculously expensive jeans. So I do shop at Old Navy. And you know what? I love their Diva cut jeans. They are the only ones I can find that actually fit my short chubby frame right. They have a lot of stretch in the waist (which is where I carry most of my weight). So I don’t have to buy several sizes up to fit me in the waist. I don’t think they look like “mom jeans” at all. I will continue to buy Old Navy jeans until I lose the weight I want to lose and can be a bit more picky about the jeans I buy. However, I refuse to spend $50+ on one pair of pants….

  98. Help! I can never find the right jeans. I’m barely 5’3″ and weigh 150. I have absolutely no butt and everything sags on me and are too long. The only jeans that don’t sag are the super skinny or jegging. And we know you can’t wear those with everything. Any suggestions are very much appreciated!

  99. PLEASE HELP! This was so enlightening. Thank you SO much for putting this info out there. I’d NEVER have known there was a difference in jeans. So my problem is I’m short – 5’2″ – with shoes on. BUT I have VERY short legs (thus short inseam, like a 27″!). Even the so-called “petite” pants/jeans are too long on me. The other confounding issue is that I also have a very short “rise” (low cut pants come up nearly to my belly button! ugh!) (I’m also sadly somewhat overweight, ugh, so what fits my belly is way too big for my legs, and vice versa, what fits my thighs I can’t even fasten shut around my waist/belly.) I know this is a lot of info and I know it may not be possible to find something to meet all these issues, but I thought I’d ask. Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated!!!! I’d love to text you if you really don’t mind. I need all the help I can get! :-)
    ~Katie in MI

    1. Feel free to send me pictures of you in your jeans here!

      You’re probably going to have to hem jeans – that really opens up your options.

      Good brands for bigger waists proportionally are William Rast and Express. Also, Silver Suki Surplus.

  100. What would you suggest for someone with a pear shape? My waist is about 10″ smaller than my hips, I always have a gap at the waist. With the pear shape, I have a butt :) I also need them in tall. Thanks, very informative!

    1. What would you suggest for someone 5’8″ and 180 lbs? Big but and hips and firm legs, not a huge tummy but it’s there….I always need long and my issue is I am always pulling up my jeans every time I stand up, it’s so annoying!

  101. This is an awesome post!!! Hilarious too, thank you thank you thank you for saving me from Gateway Mom Jeans!

  102. Wow! Awesome blog post – this about blew my mind… the only jeans I really like are Silvers that I get from Maurices… but now once I get the last of this baby weight off (9 months later), I really want to try some of those jeans you suggested!
    I can’t wait to share this post with my Mom and sisters!

  103. I am a almost 29 year old mother of two! I am currently wearing old navy jeans! The first time I wore them, my grandmother was like, “Those jeans look so good on you!” I suffer from no-booty syndrome. As well as baby belly syndrome. I am 5’9 and 165. I used to wear Arizona jeans until I realized I am no longer a teenager and I have a mommy body. Any suggestions? Thank you for this! I needed it!

    1. It’s hard to give suggestions without knowing a little more about your body type, but I would look for jeans with a giving waistband and smaller or flap pockets. Sounds like you might look good in skinny jeans, too!

  104. I can tell you I am 5’2″ and lost 100lbs and now 135lbs so finding jeans that fit (ALL I WEAR IS JEANS) is hard. I have a saggy belly but not too bad but I lost all my butt. If they fit in waist they sag in my butt, I do find that the smaller pocket ones look better and the flap on the but do too. However finding the jeans that fit right is hard. I HAVE ONE pair I love and believe it or not they came from Catos. They were on the clearance rack and I think they were there is because they fit me in length and most are taller than me. Now they don’t have them or I would go and buy them out.

  105. Love this post! I think (o.k., I KNOW) that I have a few pairs of mom jeans but it’s SO annoying to shop for jeans! Especially with a mobile 15 month old.! here’s my question… I don’t like the wash and obvious fading on the designer denim. I also am not a fan of so detail pockets.
    Do you have suggestions of more designer brands that have great dark denim. Not black, denim.
    If you wrote a post on it already, send it my way!

    1. Yes definitely – that’s almost all I wear now – dark without whiskering or fading. Here are some to try:
      Joes Jeans
      Citizens of Humanity
      7 for all Mankind
      Frankie B
      Koral Jeans
      Genetic Denim
      And my favorite right now, Red Engine.

  106. Thank you for posting this! I constantly struggle with jeans to fit me correctly! I would love to ‘butt-text’ you for your opinion! Thanks again!

  107. Try Chico’s. Their sizes are consistent from jeans to dress pants – so if you find a pair that fits great you can order others on their website.

  108. This was the most helpful jeans post I have ever seen…and I’ve looked. My SIl sent this to me because she knows how I am currently lamenting jean shopping right now! I am a 33 year old mom of 3, 5’5″ 118lbs. I have curves but not large ones. I don’t have skinny thighs. I have the opposite problem you describe. I. Red a 4 for my thighs and a 2 for my waist. I have the “gap” in the back problem I many jeans. I try to get stretchy (not elastic) jeans to accommodate the different size needs, but I was at Ross this weekend and tried literally every pair they had in my size and walked away with nothing. We live in a small town, no express, our only department store is JCPennys. I plan to order something from amazon. Not more than $30. Where should I start??
    Also my husband holds a position in town where it matters what I wear when we are out weekends together- so all the bling that makes me looking I am trying to be 17 is not a good fit. HELP?!

    1. Red Engine is perfect for getting rid of the back gap. They’re expensive, but SO worth it, because they’ll last as long as ten pairs of cheap jeans. However, Amazon has some on sale right now: – you just may need to hem them, depending. Although the ankle length ones may be perfect on you.

  109. I was just wondering if you have any suggestions for plus size women, where to shop? I weight 230 and can’t find any jeans that are comfortable and look good.

  110. Thank you for looing into this and I had no idea that my back pockets should extend past my curves so as to exentuate my natural figure. I have since then looked into some of your altenative sugestions or non-mom jeans and have a couple of critisisms.

    #1 HOLY EXPENSIVE! So far I’ve searched online for Antik, Express Rerock, 7 FAM, and Hudson Boot and I haven’t found a single pair that is uner $100 let along under $160.. There are some buy one get one for significantly cheaper which could result in a total cost of $75.00 per pair but that is still a little steap coming from a mother who doesnt want to be wearing “mom JEANS”

    #2 Where can I go to just try on these styles??? I’m thinking Macy’s or TJ Maxx but so far I havent been able to confirm these suspicions. I live in a fairly large city but we do not have a Nordstrom Rack or sything like that. More dept. stores, malls, etc.

    #3 Almost every pair of alternative “non-mom” jeans you show look way too long for your body type…. is that just me? Yes they look great on your butt but they do not seem to fit in the length. Does anyone else agree with this?

    Thank you again for sharing your perspective on what helps to showcase the “trunk region”. This has helped me chage how I will look at future jean purchases. Just because it fits doesn’t mean it looks good.

    Any feedback is welcome.

    1. I’m right there with you. I would love to wear 7 FAM, but they are so expensive!! Currently a lot of their pants are 50%, but they are still priced around $160 : ( TJ Maxx, here I come!

      1. Check out HauteLook: under their Nordstrom Rack section, they have a ton of designer denims. Although their 7FAM don’t get too far under $89, a lot of the other brands (that are just as good) get down to $30-50s. I currently adore Mother Denim for smaller waists and bigger hips and Frankie B for bigger waists and smaller hips.

        Hope that helps!

    2. #1: I never pay over $100 for jeans. Express: They have buy one get one half off sales and really great coupons. Combine the two and the jeans will be $30-40. As for the other designer jeans, Nordstrom Rack and their site HauteLook are AMAZING ways to get them for half off or more:

      #2: Try on at the department stores, figure out your sizing in designer denim, then buy from HauteLook. Unlike Zulily, you can almost always return to HauteLook if they don’t work.

      #3: I was trying on those jeans with flats to more fairly compare with the Gap jeans since I was wearing flats the day we took those photos, and I almost always wear them with wedges, so I have them hemmed to heels. I do hem most of my jeans to make them the exact length I want.

      Hope that helps!

  111. Holy smokes! This cracked me up, and not because it was funny HA HA…but because it was sadly so true. It made me feel like I was not imagining the face that my jeans sagged horribly within wearing them after 20 mins and gave me a FLAT butt. Talk about SAD! I will take more pride when I jean shop from now on. Thanks for doing the research and pointing it out loud and clear!

  112. What an awesome pictorial of the do’s and dont’s of jeans buying. And hilarious too! Thank you for your undercover and highly controversial, and I’m sure at times, dangerous in the trenches reporting!

  113. So the moral of the story? Big pockets mean a big but.

    Just please don’t wear those jeans with no back pockets at all, those look really hideous.

  114. I enjoyed your comparisons since, alas, I’m a wearer of ON jeans…:/ Though I agree with your comparisons for the most part, I do have one question: are there any good looking jeans withOUT “blinged out” back packets?? I work at a private school where we can wear jeans on Fridays, but there are strict dress code guidelines about no embellishment on the back pockets. Do those jeans exist?? Fortunately, I can wear your choice pairs on my own time:)

    1. Oh Definitely – many many brands have very simple back pockets.

      Joe’s Jeans
      J Brand
      7 for all Mankind
      Frankie B
      Red Engine
      Lucky Jeans
      Mother Denim

      Those are some of my favorites.

  115. Hello! I found your denim post very helpful and yet scary. I thought i had good jeans but I would like some advice. I am a 40 year old mom of two little ones. I lost all my baby weight but no amount of exercise is going to get rid of my saddle bags. Unless some knows something that I don’t know. My thighs are the worst part of me and I believe they make me look wider than I actally am. I am back down to a size 4. My current jeans are Tommy Hilfiger class boot cut. I took pictures and love to share them but how do I do that? Please help! i need advice. Jean shopping is such a horrible chore.

    Thank you,


    1. Feel free to email me the pictures here! I’d be glad to take a look at them.

      Darker washes and a more giving waistband are great for post-baby bodies. Also, a slightly higher rise to get over the inevitable pooch (or at least I have it, but it could be a C-Section thing.) My favorite is Red Engine – they’re higher in the rise, don’t have a back gap, and are extremely flattering. They’re pricy and hard to find, but Amazon has some on sale right now with free returns. – You’d probably be a size 28, if I had to guess.

  116. I’m 26 now, and realizing that after hovering around size 11 in juniors, it might be time to step out of the “Junior’ area. I have wide hips and thighs, with a very very tiny butt.
    I always end up with a poopy, saggy, sad behind. And I refuse to enter Mom Jean world.
    I’m lost! :(

    1. Try Express first – they can be really flattering. However, if you have no butt, American Eagle might be better. I think these brands are somewhat in between “junior” and “lady”, and I like them a lot. If you want a trendy stitched look, though, definitely go to Buckle.

  117. As perfectly stated in Crazy Stupid Love by hotty mchotterton himself, “Be better than the Gap, be better than the Gap.” :)

  118. I too need help finding good jeans to fir my frame!. I may be exaggerating a little to call myself an amazon woman, lol but I am 5’9″, and weigh 154. As all women know, it depends on the type of jeans as to what size we are anymore, but I have gone from a size 5 to a size 11 all while being this same height/weight. It is extremely hard to find jeans that are 1) long enough and 2) that flatter a girl of my shape. I do have larger legs. Any advice is appreciated! Thanks!

    1. Try going to Buckle – they have very helpful people there to help you find a great fit. And they hem for free, and have long lengths!

      Designer Jeans also come standard in really long lengths, so you could try Joe’s Jeans, Red Engine, Lucky, 7 for all Mankind, AG and more and probably have a lot of luck. I buy all mine through Nordstrom Rack or HauteLook so they’re over half off:

  119. What are your thoughts on Banana Republic jeans? Your post and folks comments are hilarious!
    Up next is me running to my closet to look at my jeans!

  120. I ALWAYS shop at Walmart for clothes, when I was a teenager LEI looked great on me. I haven’t changed since then, I have 2 kids and now they don’t seem to look the same. Guess going from 135-200 makes a difference. I’m fitting into 15’s with a muffin top and I hate it. My legs are a little muscular with a slight butt. The most I can spend on a pair of jeans would be 30$ at most, please help with any ideas. I live in Colorado and don’t shop much due to anxiety.

  121. Hi, I’ve been looking for jeans for over 4 years. I am a 34 waist and 34 inseam. I have a mummy tummy, no bum and skinny legs. Every pair of jeans that I’ve purchased either have to much fabric at the crotch, hips or below the bum. Please help me. I’d really like to find a good pair of jeans. I am in Canada so have limited options. Thanks B.

    1. Try a skinny jean – they look great on people with tiny legs. You just might have trouble finding one in that length. I’m not familiar with the stores available in Canada to give specific ideas, but I believe y’all have Buckle, right?

  122. Love this blog! Was the jeans of the same size? Can you give a comparison of what your sz was between them? Just so I Hv a starting point as to what to expect when I turn away from the gateway, lol! Thanks!!

  123. Step one is admitting you have a problem. Hi, I’m Nicki, and I wear gateway mom jeans! Now where so I find new jeans that don’t break the bank? I’m 5’10”, so I need longer length jeans. I also wear a 14. Those factors rule me out of a lot of jeans! I find that anything labeled any permutation of “low rise” makes things, erm, jiggle. Muffin top and baby pooch galore. Where, oh where, do I find jeans? I only buy them once a year (if I am lucky) so I have maybe 3 pairs of jeans at a time at any given time. Sigh. I tried out Levi’s once, after pulling on the scuba suit they call jeans, I said out loud “I always wanted to know how I looked as an avatar character!” Blue second skin for sure! I have huge calves from playing soccer a lot of my life. Clothing shopping is lame!

  124. Hahaha! Too funny. Old Navy jeans look fantastic on me, in fact I had a friend go to Old Navy to pick some up after asking me what kind of jeans I wore. But she came back somewhat crestfallen and said they looked AWFUL on her. Body type makes such a difference! My main beef with Old Navy jeans is that they are cheap in all of the wrong ways. They wear sooooo quickly! Come on! Use better denim, people!

  125. I would be pretty interested to hear what you’ve got to say about the overly blinged out butt jeans somehow still fairly common in certain parts of the country!! Your take??

  126. What’s worse is finding a brand that flatters your shape, is finding “the perfect pair of jeans”, only to never be able to find them again!

  127. i am a mom of 2. 25 yrs old and i have been trying all sorts of jeans. unlike some moms out there i was born with booty. no hips just what family calls bubble butt. there are pants out there that my butt actually cant stuff in (in my size) just not enough capacity. it has been a struggle to find the right pants. i am 5 6 and about 130lbs

  128. What if you are a plus size?? I have a horrible time finding jeans that fit. Even if they are my size, they ar falling off within an hour and I have to always wear a belt :-( Are all jeans being made with spandex now?? I just want them to fit like they do when I first put them on.

  129. I love the post. I tell my mom all the time to try out different Jeans. I hate Old Navy Jeans on my , they look like huge bagge sacks on me. I love Antik, Mek, True religion, Lucky( depending on the cut, and iT jeans. I love all the pics, really great job, I wish I had the time to take pics like that too. Amazing :) No More Mom Jeans ;)

  130. OMG- I just bought a pair of jeans and I asked my 16 yr.old daughter “Do these look like mom jeans?” Her reply was “no, not as bad as the other ones you have.”
    GREAT! two thumbs up for me was my feeling…
    Guess where “other ones” come from- Old NAVY! I also scrolled through the pictures saying “oh please, I hope my butt doesn’t look like that!”
    I will be shopping ELSEWHERE when income taxes come in! Do u have any sugggestions?
    I am an 8/10 medium length. regular length generally falls an inch too short for my likings, tall is too long..
    I am endowed with a wide rear and a small muffin top yet not thick if you view me from the side…
    Jeans need to not come up to my belly button nor ride low enough to show my backside’s grand canyon!
    ~this is why I hate shopping for jeans! I am the mom of 16yr., 14yr. and 12 yrkids and a high school teacher- Please help!

  131. Have you tried the old navy rock star jeans? I have curvy hip and not skinny thighs and these jeans look great on me. They have a bit of stretch so they lift my hurt and slim my thighs. I’m not a fan of ‘busy’ pocket designs and these are plain but I like the lift and serration they create. Is like to see these on you…

  132. Dude, those express rerocks even slimmed the baby legs! What a difference a good fit makes, for all around! Any ideas on where to buy good knee-length shorts? I’ve resorted to cutting and hemming jeans, which isn’t the worst, but there has to be a better way.

    1. Capris come in a lot of lengths now, including around knee-length. Also, sometimes Capris are stretchy enough that you can roll them to be the length that you want them.

      And yes, I’ve gotten lots of comments on that baby’s leg – silly kid stretched it out in the second photo and made it look skinnier. :-)

  133. I am in major need of a denim intervention! Since having kids, my already long torso now has a few extra pounds that don’t seem to be disappearing anytime soon. That said, ALL of my pants are too low and my kids family loves to say “butt crack alert” – HELP please! I am 38, 5 foot 6 and 140 lbs – any name brands to suggest? Thank you from this very fashion-challenged momma

    1. Luckily for you, higher rises are on the rise! My favorite higher rise jean is Red Engine – they’re not cheap but they’re fantastic. Amazon sometimes has them on sale:

      Other brands that are starting to offer higher rise without compromising pocket placement:
      Mother Denim
      J Brand
      NYDJ (Look good on SOME people)
      Lucky Brand Jeans

      Hope that helps!

  134. Ok. YOU ARE MY HERO!!! I am 25 years old in my mind but 40 in reality. I have mom butt, small waist, thick thighs. I’ve recently found lucky brand and I like them ok but I seem to be right between a 6 and an 8. I bought both because I AM DESPERATE for non mom jeans but neither really fits me right. Where can I find the brands you mentioned? Will you please come to TX and be my personal shopper?? You are obviously a genius with fit and fashion for us real girls :-)!!!

  135. Hi!!! Love your article!!!! I need help too!! Lol. I am a bigger mom of 3. I am 5,2″ and 190lbs (I have lost 20+ lbs!!)
    I usually can only find jeans that “fit” from lane Bryant however they kind of have the mom jeans!!! My size varies from 14-18. What type of jeans should I try???

  136. I’ve read all of your posts and I find them really helpful. However, I have a request! I am 6′ and a size 12, 14, or 16 depending where I shop. As a tall woman, I have such a hard time finding flattering jeans! I have a slightly bigger stomach and smaller hips and I end up with saggy butt, or muffin top and length is NEVER right or if it is then I have front sagging or knees that are too wide and silly looking. Help! Also, a post or two about dress pants and booty fit would be great! I almost always have to order online for the additional length and I’m almost always disappointed! Loved your posts!

  137. Help! I am 5′ 0″ tall and about 149 right now. I fear I may wear Mom jeans without even knowing it! I’d appreciate being able to text you for help. With my height it’s nearly impossible to find jeans I feel. AE had petite size but no longer and since they stopped I just wear old jeans because I hate shopping for new ones. Help!

  138. I can’t believe someone went to the trouble if writing such a long article about jeans and so many people took the time to comment on the article. We all must be bored to death!!

  139. So what do you suggest for someone who wears the curvy gap jean? I have a larger butt, but a smaller waist. It’s hard to find something that doesn’t gap in the back. Plus every curvy jean is always bootcut. Any suggestions to try?

  140. I wear a 20 petite. I cannot fit into any of the jeans sold at these stores. I can’t even shop for jeans at the mall. I buy mine at kmart and Walmart. Sometimes sears or jcpenneys sell my size but they are way out if my price range. I know I’m wearing mom jeans. Help!

  141. The only way you can top this is to do it all over again in VIDEO. This is amazing. I wear Loft Modern skinny jeans. I’m going upstairs to check to see if I’m wearing Mom jeans and I’m out to get new jeans pronto! Gap is probably mad as hell at you, but who cares. Hillarious. Their product has been crap for YEARS! And Old Navy used to be great twenty years ago, but now it seems that blindfolded sew their clothes together. Gap USED TO BE GOOD. I still have a few things from twenty years ago, when the clothes were made well. Now the quality is like kMart.

  142. What is the best fitting jeans for petite ppl? I’m 4’11, weight 140lbs. I love jeans but can’t seem to find a good fitting pair! Any brands you can recommend? Awesome article!

    1. The most important thing is be willing to hem – it will open up a lot of options for you. But I’d try Express first – they have great shorts. Red Engine sometimes has petites, also. Oh! And Buckle offers free hemming!

  143. I love this post, but what should I do when I have an inseam of 37 inches? I’ve been looking for a better alternative to Gap, because along with everything else, their quality keeps deteriorating while their prices keep rising, but I have yet to find a good VERY TALL alternative! HELP!

    1. Yes, I have the same question. Was getting ready to post it. I wear a 37 inch inseam as well. I have had some success with Alloy, but a lot of their stuff is too young for me (I am 37). What else is out there for the really tall ladies?

  144. Whether or not a companies clothing fits you properly depends entirely on your proportions and how they compare to the companies “Fit model”. All clothing companies use what is called a “Fit model”. This model has what the company considers the ideal proportions for it’s clothing. So unless you are close in proportion to the company’s fit model chances are the clothes are not going to fit you perfectly.
    I personally wear both Gap and Old Navy jeans and have no problem with the “mom jean effect.” The best bet is to try on jeans from many different companies…find the pair that work best for you and buy multiples. Additionally, the only way to get your clothes to fit perfectly are to have them tailored to your body. So if you are not willing to invest in alterations don’t expect a perfect fit.

  145. 43 y/o mom of 3, stepmom to 3, and grandma to one, trying desperately not to look like it. What are your thoughts on a tall but tiny frame? 5’11 135lbs, runs the gamut between size 6-10 depending on brand.

    1. You sound like you have the perfect body for jeans, but perhaps are wearing jeans WAY too big for you! Try some a lot smaller and see how you like the fit – they should fit your thighs to where the jeans are touching your thighs all the way around but not squeezing them out.

      You really could wear any brand, but if you’re willing to get some designer brands (you can get them cheaper at Nordstrom Rack or through HauteLook after you know your size), try Red Engine, Joe’s Jeans, Mother Denim, or Frankie B.

      If you want to try some slightly less expensive, try the talls at Express – perhaps either Skyscraper, Stella, or ReRock.

      Let me know how it goes and I want to see some pictures! :-)

  146. My hubby bought me some Express Rerock jeans (2 pairs) and my Mom said “Wow, those are so tight you look like you’ve been melted and poured into them.” So now my hubby and I call them my “melted jeans”. I like those and the Express Stella jeans. Neither one are mom jeans and I refuse to wear any. Ironically I think I only wore mom jeans before I became a mom (although I didn’t realize they were at the time).

  147. I loved this article! What do you suggest for a 6 foot tall, 40 year old mother of three? I’m not a model by any means, but am healthy & fit. I generally buy long jeans from Eddie Bauer, and while I am by no means curvy (read: pretty straight from my chest to my knees!), I have to get the curvy fit to avoid a gappy waist. I’d love to get your feedback!

  148. I agree with almost everything except the long zipper! Most jeans today NEED a longer zipper. No one needs jeans hitting just above the pubic bone!

  149. Great article! Fun, (funny), and informative ;-) ! I was so excited to look for all these brands on-line and see if I could find some jeans for myself! No luck yet though :-(. I’m a 16 Misses Tall – not a 16 women’s (totally different fit). HELP!! Can’t find any of these brands in that size :-), which is apparently, why I buy mom jeans from Gap and Old Navy. Although I found some at NY & Co. that seem a little more stylish this fall. The Rerock’s only went up to a 14, the LA Idol’s only come in smaller junior sizing and don’t seem to come in long/tall.. Miss Me seems to do the same as LA Idol’s. Any ideas????? I’d LOVE to be able to find some hip-er jeans!! Help!! Pretty please :-) :-).

    1. They’re not if you’re willing to bargain shop! Check the clearance racks, go to Nordstrom Rack or shop on HauteLook…I always get great deals on designer jeans – often cheaper than Gap’s sticker price!

  150. Styles repeat every 20 years or so. (The new millennial has been the exception, in that all styles retro have been celebrated for a time). What may have been mom jeans in the last decade may end up being the new ‘cool jeans’ by a future generation. In the late 80’s, early 90’s they wore skin tight jeans and would have DIED if offered a hip-hugging, bell-bottom or flare-legged jean. Toward the end of the decade some fashionistas were bringing in the very flare leg that had previously horrified teens. High waists and pleats were so cool in the 80’s but became the mom jean of choice in the 90’s. High waists and pleats may very well be the ‘in’ thing for up and coming teens. And they’ll know they’ve found the perfect style if it makes their moms want to barf. And then, anyone wearing low riders will officially be wearing the new mom jeans (because…that’s what moms wear!)

  151. Can you tell us where you buy these great jeans? I’ve never heard of any of them. I shop at Kohl’s, The Dress Barn, and the thrift store primarily. I would branch out had I known my butt could look like that. Please tell me where besides the internet. I have to try them on first!

  152. Now I see why my sister told me my 18 year old niece said I needed to get some new jeans–42 year old mom jean wearer *sigh*

  153. I absolutely LOVE how NONE of these are in my price range WHATSOEVER!!!! So I guess mom jeans is is. Thanks so much for the “help”.

    1. If you’re willing to look for them, you can find them at reasonable prices. I never pay over $100 for jeans, and often get them for $50 or less! Express has great sales which can be combined with coupons, Department stores often have designer jean clearance racks, and Nordstrom Rack sells some amazing jeans through their HauteLook site for way less than half price:

      They’re out there! I promise!

  154. Cheers!! I absolutely need a SOB (save our butt) makeover haha! Looks like I will be jean shopping with our tax returns ;)

  155. Love the article – but still looking for jeans not so expensive. Spent this morning look at all the suggestion above but most $100+. Bit over my budget.

    1. If you’re willing to look for them, you can find them at reasonable prices. I never pay over $100 for jeans, and often get them for $50 or less! Express has great sales which can be combined with coupons, Department stores often have designer jean clearance racks, and Nordstrom Rack sells some amazing jeans through their HauteLook site for way less than half price:
      They’re out there! I promise!

  156. Ok, this has me wondering about what on earth I should buy. I’m 36 and a soon to be mom of 8. Typical pre-pregnancy weight is between 120-125, and I’m 5’8″. My hubby hates that every pair of jeans I wear is unflattering in his opinion and makes my tush look really flat. I have NO clue where to even begin as I never think about clothes, except that yes I am in fact wearing some and yes they WERE clean when I put them on.

    1. Look for smaller pockets, perhaps pockets with flaps, and where the pockets fall on your butt makes all the difference! It sounds like you have a fantastic body for jeans – you should have a lot of options out there for you! I’ll be glad to help when you get ready to shop.

  157. I love your article! Is there any chance your husband would volunteer to do the same research but for men’s jeans? I am trying to convince my man that he needs to buy better jeans so he doesn’t look like he has a saggy old man rear! So far I have convinced him to wear at least Levi’s instead of Wal-Mart jeans!

    Thank you!

  158. Well, CRAP. Just CRAP. Here I’ve always prided myself in NOT wearing ‘Mom jeans’ — but now I’m not so sure. Could it be? Have I been ALWAYS wearing ‘Mom jeans’??

    Help!!!! I am in my mid-40’s. I recently lost 35lbs (because of cancer, NOT because of hard work! Though I am determined NOT to gain any of it back). And I’m more clueless about jeans now than ever. As soon as I post this, I will be moving on to your article on picking out the perfect jeans. Then I am going to make an appointment with my 15-year-old daughter, beg to her take me shopping….and tell me the TRUTH (she tells me I look great in everything.). Damn kid.

  159. I wear mom jeans every other non mom Jean I’ve wore my butt crack sticks out lol rather embarrassing but….I’ve never heard of any of the ‘other’ option jeans. Do they cover long butt cracks lol

  160. Very informative post! I HATE shopping for jeans because after trying on 10 pairs of hideous jeans, I quit (usually on the verge of tears). I did an Internet search for every brand of jeans you recommended and was very disappointed to see that they are all $70-200! After all the costs that come with raising kids, most moms don’t have that kind of cash to throw away on jeans. I usually buy old navy jeans because they are $15-20, even though they are not at all flattering. Are there really no realistically priced jeans that fit great?

    1. I bargain shop for jeans, but usually pay $40-70 for a pair. But they’re worth it, because they last so much longer!

      At Express, you can combine their sales with their great coupons to usually get jeans about $30-40.

      As for the designer brands, you can often find them on Clearance racks at the department stores and through HauteLook for around $30-70.

      It really is worth it to pay a little more – they will last you so much longer, besides looking so much more fantastic!

  161. NIKKI and JOSIE,
    I too am 6′ and take a size 14/16……have always had to purchase Levi’s in men styles for the length. Recently I found Maci’s carried a womans Levi’s, but it still was hard to find them in a long. FINALLY a light bulb went off……..GO ONLINE TO LEVI’S!!!! I found “Perfectly Slimming 512 Bootcut”! LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE THEM!!!!! I think they have others besides bootcut too, I personally have always liked the bootcut. If you sign up for their email list, they will send you emails on their sales. Last time I bought, I got 50% off and free shipping. I will never go jean shopping again, and will never buy any other jean. (The last pair I bought prior was at Old Navy, funny enough, and how true is this article???!!! Got them for about the same price as the Levi’s, thought they were great cuz they were long enough so I settled,, but……..THE SUCKED!!! Just like the blog said, felt/looked good for about the first 5 minutes, then they just sagged, and looked crappy. So wish I could return them for a refund!!!)

  162. I just finished reading your article about GAP/Old Navy jeans. I love your writing! I’ve never had much luck with jeans. Gap jeans offender here. My problem is that I have a small waist and large hips. If jeans fit in the hips, they’re too big in the waist. If they fit in the waist, I usually can’t get them over my hips. I’m a size 10 and 5’2″. Usually have to buy petite or short. ( I don’t have a problem hemming but the crotch can be long or the flare falls too low.). It’s so rare to find jeans that fit both hips and waist (Gap does), I can hardly reject them due to pocket size. Do you have any suggestions??

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