I think it's safe to say that if we were rummaging through our mom's closets years ago and pulled out a pair of her faded, well worn, slightly oversized jeans with the high waist we probably would have put them right back where we found them.
Officially dubbed "mom jeans" have made a massive comeback and have dominated fashion's denim world in recent years giving the rest of the denim hanging in our closets or folded in our drawer some competition!
Mom Jeans - An overview
If you're new to the mom jean phase, I know what you're thinking. I picture my mom making lunches, vacuuming, or on family outings wearing her mom jeans with a tucked in white Guess t-shirt (that was so faded it was probably an antique), with a pair of navy blue Vans or a pair of white sneakers that may or may not have had a Disney character on them.
I don't remember ever thinking to myself, "Wow she looks like a runway model in this outfit!" That is because you didn't see mom jeans on the runway. In fact, it was almost an insult to the demographic who wore these jeans (you know, older American women who were typically moms that were so busy actually being superheroes chasing after their kids).
Until this 1981 campaign starring Brooke Shields rocking a pair of Calvin Klein mom jeans happened. Mega babe of the century making these mom jeans look amazing, things were about to look up for mom's pants.
The cool thing about mom jeans that we now understand is WHY our mom's wore them. The functionality is what made them come to life. We started realizing that we deserved to wear pants that were comfortable and breathable, standing opposite of beloved skinny jeans that after a while leave seam imprints on our legs from how tight they are. Ouch!
These mom jeans are fitted at the waist and loosely taper down to the ankle where it is typically cuffed to visually create length in the leg. This fitted waist and taper provide the appearance of a smaller waist since they sit higher up.
It is a love story. Memories of our moms wearing them and loving them ourselves because they are so comfortable and flattering make us fuzzy inside. Just me? Oh. Well since you are here, I bet you do love them- or are at least trying to love them.
If you are on the fence still, let me show you a few great ways to wear these momma pants that are quickly becoming a staple piece to many wardrobes!
How to wear ripped mom jeans
"Distressed" is a wildly popular look for denim all together and it is a personal favorite of mine in the mom jean style! I enjoy styling these distressed jeans with a simple white tee and heels to give a casual but still classy look on these jeans.
If you are wanting to amp up the look and make it a little less casual, I suggest doing so with accessories! Notice how in this first picture she has added a loose brand tee that is tucked in (this is important to not lose the waist in that much fabric), a cute cross body bag, and clear heels to keep the focus on the pants and visual length in the legs?
Looks good, doesn't it?
In this second photo you see a beautiful structured coat that contrasts nicely to her white t-shirt and light wash mom jeans. She has added a nice wide belt that is a darker color to draw attention to the waist and an open toe heel to keep the flow of length that goes along with the long coat!
Style this look with some jewelry and a cute pair of sunglasses to recreate this look! Remember my teddy bear coat outfit? You could wear something like that with this look also! Another great way to mix up the look of the ripped jean is to add a pair of fishnet tights underneath for a "peek-a-boo" look.
Wrap it up with sneakers and you're ready to hit the town!
How to wear a crop top with mom jeans
I want to bring something to attention regarding these mom jeans. The best looking part of them is that it shows off our true waistline, which is why we don't wear mom jeans with a shirt hanging over top of it. We tuck them in OR we wear a crop top.
If you're not a fan of tucking tops into these jeans but still want to keep your figure visible, a crop top is a great choice. I love this outfit because it is fun and frilly with this loose off the shoulder crop top and light wash mom jeans. It is balanced with her black strappy heels, leather purse with chain hardware, and a black classic Gucci Belt. This look is a perfect mix of sweet and daring.
I like to make my mom jeans the focal point of my look, and a great way to do that is go monochomatic with everything else. This outfit is a fun way keep that look without getting lost in clothes. She took a black bralette, paired it to a mesh crop, and added a pair of chunky sock booties and a matching belt.
There aren't many rules to crop tops and jeans which makes it the perfect versatile look. It can be casual with a cropped tee and sneakers or a flirty slightly more dressed up like this one here. It is also a great way to style these jeans in the summer without being too warm!
How to wear mom jeans in the summer
One of the easiest ways to style these jeans in warmer weather is by pairing them with a basic tank top! Pictured here, is an outfit with a satin tank that is light and airy with some simple, yet classic, bangles and light pink pumps!
This look does not have to have heels though. If you're looking to tone it down, you could easily wear a pair of pointed flats, classic penny loafers, or even a pair of sneakers. If you're needing some loafer inspiration, check out my Gucci slip on loafers in this Polka Dot Shirt outfit.
A great way to get that tucked-in look with your mom jeans without having a ton of extra fabric is to wear a bodysuit! I like this simple tank top with a lace trim because it is simple yet elegant, and who wants a ton of extra fabric on to deal with when it is warm outside?
I certainly do not! Perhaps it is JUST cool enough that you need a light cover- the cardigan addition works perfectly. They're not too heavy and it creates a good opportunity for a contrasting color addition to the look.
It is hard to tell, but there is a possibility that this is a bodysuit, in which case is awesome because it makes the outfit extra hassle free. Sometimes tucking a shirt in just doesn't always fit or look perfect, a bodysuit will help there!
How to wear mom jeans with sneakers
Lets say you aren’t a fan of heels. I have some girlfriends who have the most amazing long legs, and they just don’t like to wear heels and always wear sneakers, sandals, or flats. Or maybe the occasion calls for more of a walking shoe. Sneakers can be styled with these mom jeans just as easily as heels!
I’m a firm believer that we can never go wrong with a basic white tee (v-neck or crew neck) and white sneakers to match in an outfit. This simple outfit is styled with an easy going half up-do and a simple camel colored bag. It works, doesn’t it?
Outfits like this gives us no reason to say “I have nothing to wear” because this is literally as easy as it gets!
The same applies with this other look. Shes wearing a long sleeve with her mom jeans and sneakers, and it is just as simple and easy as the white tee/white sneaker outfit.
She even went as far to make sure her socks were grey and matched her shirt! But I like that she added the black belt and a black backpack to it, because they really compliment each other. Something you’ll see in common throughout most of these looks is that the legs of the jeans are cuffed- some more than others.
Different ways to wear mom jeans
So, I wanted to share a couple extra ways to wear mom jeans that didn’t really fall into a particular category, just because they’re crazy cute. I’ve talked about wearing your mom jeans with your heels, flats, and sneakers, but I couldn’t resist sharing them with these boots- Dr. Marteens it looks like.
You know I talked about tucking in a white tee earlier, but this is fun because not only are the boots a different flare – but her jeans are colored! I think it is safe to say we all can appreciate a good pair of colored denim.
This other picture is fun because of her checkered Vans! Shes wearing an overized slightly distressed and faded crew neck sweater tucked into her mom jeans which is so simple (and looks crazy comfortable), but the addition of her checkered Vans is a super fun splash of pattern added to her look!
I probably would love this with a graphic tee even to give the look a little bit of a skater-esque or surf vibe.
I want to hear how you like to wear your favorite mom jeans! Tell me in the comments below!