The truth is, you CAN wear any trend, as long as the style fits YOUR lifestyle, style personality, and comfort level. Now one might say not all trends and silhouettes are for everyBODY, but if you understand how to adjust the fashion to work with YOUR body type, you can try out just about anything!
About My Body Type
My body type is what you’d call A (short-waisted) Rectangle Shape. My go-to jeans are the boyfriend and flare jean silhouette. That said, when I want to mix things up, I will pull out a crop flare or wide leg/palazzo jean to style. Each of these two silhouettes requires a bit more effort and might not be as flattering as the flare or boyfriend style on me, but I can’t imagine being boxed into just one shape. Popular by most women, I used to think that skinny jeans were not my friend, but once I figured out how shop for and style (mid-rise) skinnies for my body type, I find I grab them often – especially during the winter months.
Styling Outside the Box | High-Waisted Jeans
Those who follow my style journey are familiar with my love/hate relationship with high-waisted anything. Drawn to the color and trend of the “Maya” high-waisted straight-leg jean (Rag & Bone | HERE), I ventured outside my comfort zone, to try something new. And because I have an ongoing subscription to Rent the Runway Unlimited, I was able to play around with this jean at a low-risk, low-cost investment.
Why This Works
Initially, I took one look at this pair of jeans, then boxed them up to ship back to Rent the Runway. Unable to get to UPS, they sat in my car for a few days, until earlier this week when I got an itch to style them. After 30 minutes of failed attempts to style the jeans with the usual go-to tops in my closet, I had an ah-ha moment. In order for this jean to be flattering on me, I had to get out of my style box and try something different. And after combing through Pinterest, I realized the top had to be fitted – to balance out the volume below.
THIS (must-have!) fitted top fit the bill and a simple wide belt (in the same color of my top to elongate my torso) finished the look. Feeling a little exposed in a body-con t-shirt, a long topper brought me back into my comfort zone. A block heeled bootie creates a long leg line, once again, off-setting the fullness of the jean, creating a balanced look.
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SALE ALERT! J Crew ‘Sadie’ Bootie | HERE
Similar to my bootie (Aquatallia, past season), and an ASB Reader Fave, the J Crew Sadie Bootie is now on sale! The promo code “JANUARY” gets you 30% off regular-priced styles, including the regular priced ‘Sadie’ bootie. There are a few additional “extra sale” offerings on the booties that are already marked down. Here’s a look at the collection. Click on any photo to get details on the specific boot. The black suede version of the boot is on sale for $99.26 at Zappos | (HERE), but sizes are limited.
High Waisted Jean 101
High waisted styles are available in every pant leg silhouette; bootcut, flare, crop, straight, and skinny styles. Personally, I find skinnies the easiest, and crop wide leg the most challenging jean to style. Stretch denim offers comfort, where as non-stretch denim will hold it all in. But what you really want to pay attention to is the rise, and what you wear on top.
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What’s a rise?
Rise is the distance from the middle of the crotch seam to the top of the waistband. The usual range in bottoms are between 7 inches to 12 inches; some are higher.
Why is the rise important?
Pant rise determines where your jeans sit on your body, which in turn creates your perceived waistline.
What’s the best high waist style for me?
- Petites: High waist jeans will give the illusion of height and length if you go with a skinny silhouette.
- Hourglass: The fit in the waist needs to be spot on. Gapping in the waist will not flatter your beautiful hourglass shape.
- Pear: Choose a pair with enough stretch and show off your waist with a belt. Heels will lengthen your legs!
- Apple: Your best bet is a pair with a built-in tummy panel like NYDJ, Spanx or LEVI Skinny Shaping Jeans | HERE
- Banana: The higher rise will give you shape, but you’ll need a good fit in the hip and butt for this style to be flattering.
- Full Figure. Look for stretch and tapered at the waist. Check out the Old Navy High-Rise Secret-Slim Pockets + Waistband Power (HERE) or Olivia Sculpting Skinny Jean | HERE
Styling Tips High Waisted Jeans
- Top tucked in (LOVE THIS TOP | HERE) or 1/2 tucked – not a requirement, but the idea is to show off your waist, so why not?
- Wear your top cropped, right a the belt.
- Longer jackets allow for proportion play.
- A baby flare 70’s cut will give you legs for days.
- Avoid boxy jackets and tops. You are trying to SHOW OFF your waist, not make it look wider.
- Avoid the mom jean look by getting the size and cut right for your body type.
Understand Your Body Type
Understanding your unique body type will empower you to create looks you love that are flattering for YOUR body type, style personality, comfort level, and lifestyle.