Last Edited: 28 Jan, 2024
Author: Cristina Holm

How to look good in jeans

What jeans style should you wear?

For most of us, jeans have proven a classic wardrobe staple throughout our lives.  Coming in a host of different shapes and sizes, they are versatile and easy to style.  But I wonder if it’s time to put a little more thought into this popular staple.

I’m here to teach you how to dress your jeans in a fashionable and flattering way, instead of simply relying on them as an everyday outfit fixer.

Jeans have traditionally been reserved for the young yet I encourage women of all ages to embrace denim in a way that is both trendy and mature.  My top tips are tailored to specific generations but remember, there are no rules to fashion, only guidelines.

Wearing jeans in your 30s

Your 30s is a transformative period, your style included. After a decade of keeping up with the latest trends and experimenting with different pieces during your 20s, it’s time to build a more sleek, flattering, and timeless wardrobe.  What better place to start than with the humble pair of jeans?

As you mature, it’s important to strip back your style and invest in stylish, flattering basics.  Take time to understand your body shape and which jean styles will suit you best.

For example, if you have long legs and a short torso, consider low or mid-rise jeans to balance out your frame, but those wishing to lengthen their leg should opt for a high-rise.

Finding the fit that enhances your unique shape will prove invaluable for the rest of your styling days.

However, in your 30s, you can still afford to explore more trendy and youthful pieces.  Like light-wash jeans, which are generally reserved for younger generations, so I encourage those in their 30s to embrace them now!

“Instead of following the latest fashion advice, spend time finding a good quality pair of jeans that flatters you in all the right places.”

Wearing jeans in your 40s

Once you’ve reached your 40s, the goal is to curate a versatile wardrobe without compromising on current trends.  It’s all about finding styles and colours that best suit your shape, something that definitely extends to your choice of jeans.

Instead of following the latest fashion advice, spend time finding a good quality pair of jeans that flatters you in all the right places.  For example, the straight-leg and wide-leg jeans are best suited for an hourglass shape, whilst women with a triangle/pear like figure should explore a flare or bootcut to balance out their frame.

My advice is always to invest in quality, not only for durability, but also because a ‘tatty’ pair of jeans is not the look you are going for and cheap denim can look cheap very quickly.

“Jeans should form part of every woman’s wardrobe no matter her age and shape.”

By 40, your figure may have shaped and evolved, especially if you’re a mum and especially around our middle and hips, and jeans can be a perfect way to disguise any of this ‘padding out’.

I always recommend a fitted or high-waisted jean to define the waist and highlight your curves.  Many jeans these days are made from cotton with a mix of stretchy elastane, which is great for a more flexible fit and more comfortable feel.

And finally, I’m here to tell you that your ripped-jean days have come to an end.  The youthful playfulness of distressed denim doesn’t quite fit with the boutique look we’re aiming for.

I do, however, recommend a raw hem for those wanting a more edgy, urban look or detailing at the hem if you have great looking ankles.

Wearing jeans in your 50s

At 50, it only becomes increasingly important that you know and embrace your body shape.  Now remember this – jeans of good quality and fit are a wardrobe staple for the 50 plus woman, and you are definitely not too old for them!

For many of us, our midsections and thighs have become more rounded than they were at 30, and so the goal is to create a long and lean silhouette.  High-waisted jeans are an excellent way of making your legs look longer and so does tucking in your top / shirt or blouse.

Dark-wash jeans paired with a colourful top also have a slimming effect, drawing attention away from the legs and middle.  I do still recommend white jeans, however, which are perfect for a classic yet modern look in the summer months.

I also encourage women in their 50s to invest in a classic jean, or a straight-leg fit instead of skinnies or loose fits.  Though a lot of my advice now depends upon your body shape, proportions and height.

Something I’ve noted to cover in a future blog.

Wearing jeans in your 60s and beyond

It is now that you might start to feel your jean days are behind you, but I want to help you keep them in your wardrobe for as long as possible!

I recommend opting for more classic shapes, styles and colours when wearing jeans in your 60s.  Dressing with elegance and maturity is the key to staying young, as opposed to fighting it by donning the latest trends.

Straight leg jeans are perfect for elongating the legs and avoiding a frumpy look. A bootcut is also flattering for those wishing to subtly show-off their curves, being slim at the thighs and hip and flaring out slightly at the shin.

At 60, high-waisted jeans are the most flattering fit. They successfully conceal the middle and any shapewear you might be wearing.

Colour-wise, dark-wash jeans are great for achieving a smart but casual look.  Brands like Bella di Notte also carry many colourful options, so it doesn’t always have to be a shade of blue.

A pair of dark jeans with a crisp shirt or plain t-shirt and blazer, can look casual or smart depending on your choice of accessories, especially shoes.

White and beige coloured jeans can also work for those wanting a slightly smarter look.  Aim for versatile colours that can tolerate a colourful top.  This is a recipe for timeless elegance and means you can mix and match with fewer items.

Finally, I have dressed women in their 80’s in jeans.  Despite their initial hesitation, they admitted they felt and looked amazing.

Just like trainers have become an increasing part of the staple wardrobe (evident in the many choices now available in Marks & Spencer), jeans too should continue to form part of every women’s wardrobe.  No matter your age.  Just make sure to complement with your shape.

Cristina Holm

Cristina Holm is one of the UK’s leading personal stylists. Cristina is based and operates from her studio in Warfield, Berkshire (United Kingdom).  She serves clients locally and internationally.

Cristina is also the founder of My Secret Stylist, the UK’s best kept clothes shopping secret.  For only £35.99 per year, you can find and ‘see in seconds’ clothes which complement your body shape across all the popular brands.  For more information, go to