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Jeans Buying Guide: Everything You Need To Know About Denim Washes, Styles, and Rises

Jeans are one of the most, if not the most, indispensable element in any man’s wardrobe. The average American man has at a minimum seven different pairs to choose from. Jeans come in different styles, sizes, and prices. Here is a guide to help you what is a jean exactly, distinguish the different styles, and choose the one that would best fit your taste and lifestyle.

What are denim washes?

There are two types of denim jeans, washed and unwashed. Washed denim is the more common type as most jeans are washed. Denim jeans are washed because the production process makes them colored with dark shades of dye; washing them rinses away the excess dye. There are four types of wash:

Acid wash: While they were very fashionable at one time, acid wash jeans are more stigmatized now, but many still wear them accompanied with a simple, short-sleeved shirt.
Dirty wash: It is designed to have that particular well-worn look, giving the impression to have been used for quite a long time. Dirty wash jeans are usually worn with matched shirts in order to have that distinctive worn-in appearance.
Stonewash: This is the classic and one of the most popular versions of denim jeans. The traditional blue color is realized by utilizing stones, but now chemicals are more used instead. Stonewash jean are usually worn for a casual look.
Vintage wash: This particular wash gives a retro feature to the jean, that much like the dirty wash, gives the impression that it has been worn for ages. You can wear vintage jeans with pretty much everything, but a whole retro-style apparel might make it stand out more.

Railcar Denim Laundry Detergent

On the other hand, unwashed or raw denim jeans’ dye is not rinsed, giving it a rather dark look that fades naturally with time, as its wearer keeps using the jean. Raw denim is very fashionable and are generally more expensive than washed denim jeans.

What are the different jean styles?

Every style has its own special cut. There are 5 different jean styles:

Bootcut jeans: With a slim cut fitting closely, yet not tightly to the body, and a gradual widening towards the leg opening, bootcut jeans are adequate for about any body shapes as they give good balance to it. This gives a rather fashionable look without being overly outrageous.
Relaxed Fit jeans: With a loose cut from the top to bottom, relaxed-fit jeans are perfect for more imposant men. They do not accentuate the curves and bulges of the body like the others do. Skinnier guys better avoid this style as it might give a rather sloppy and awkward look.
Skinny jeans: With a very tight fitting cut, skinny jeans, as its name suggests are reserved for thin men. On the adequate body they do in fact look very nice. Worn by larger people, it gives the impression of an even heavier body. Vintage shoes or fashionable sneakers are a nice match alongside skinny jeans.
Slim Fit: With not as tight a cut as for the skinny jeans, slim fit jeans are just as trendy and have the notable advantage of being more comfortable. Slim fit jeans are thus perfect for a more hipster style.
Straight-leg jeans: This is the standard type of cut, neither excessively tight nor loose, straight-jeans are simple and classic, fit for any casual look. Oldie, but goodie.

What are jean rises?

A jean rise is the place that the jeans sit on the hip or the waist. There are 3 types of rises:

Low-Rise: The rise is as far as possible below the belly button, so particular attention is to be paid to the length of the shirt to cover this midsection so as not to reveal underpants. Also, the tight fit around the belly area makes it uncomfortable for those with a soft stomach.
Medium-Rise: Here, the space between the waist and the crotch isn’t as small as with a low rise, and it also doesn’t extend to the ribs. Medium-rise jeans are to be preferred if low ones are too uncomfortable and you still want to look trendy.
High-Waisted: These are perfect for heavier men as the rise would help conceal the extra fat around the belly area that otherwise would be exposed in the other two rises.
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