RIP Skinny Jeans

March 19, 2015 • Fashion


Amber and Brianna are standing in front of me in Amber’s bedroom. It’s 1999 and they are both wearing Frankie B jeans. Approximately one inch of zipper separates me from Brianna’s pubic area, and, from the back, Amber’s ass crack makes a not-so-subtle cameo. “I can’t imagine wearing any jeans other than these,” Amber gushes. Brianna agrees. I sit on the bed, marveling how their parents ever let them leave the house with most of their reproductive organs showing before they can even drive cars and wondering if I will ever be able to afford a pair myself. I, too, wanted a one-inch zipper. I, too, wanted to participate in this trend, especially since two 14-year-olds had decreed it was to stay forever.

A look fit for every 14-year-old.

A look fit for every 14-year-old via YouTube

Cut to four years later (far too many years, honestly), and my friends unloaded what had likely been a $15,000 collective investment of their parents’ money in Frankie B’s vagina pants and dropped them off at the local Salvation Army. They had grown out of the trend, literally and figuratively. It was onto the next jean phase, which was somewhere between a non-committal skinny jean and the low-rise of yore. Looser, higher, far more forgiving. It was great timing, really, since everyone was off to college, where all the pizza and beer consumption lived in direct opposition to a denim trend that favored the girls with the comparable metabolisms to those of 24-year-old musicians with heroin problems.

Kate Moss, skinny jean goddess, via

Kate Moss, skinny jean goddess, via

Then, after a few years dumping cash into Seven and Citizens of Humanity, Kate Moss had to show up wearing a pair of skin, skin, skin tight jeans with her perfect tiny ass. Boom. Skinny jeans began their nearly decade-long reign. We bought Rag & Bone, J Brands, Acne. Then someone developed “jeggings,” both a horrible word and a non-jean jean capable of hugging every curve, sucking towards your body like hyper-vac hot dogs.

But all good things must come to an end, and skinny jeans–many apologies to your closet and future credit card statements–are on their slow, inevitable decline. Every day in New York, more women are trotting around wearing looser, lighter, mid-waisted jeans. It’s the boyfriend jean for girls who are like, “Yo, f*** boyfriends.” They roll them up above a pair of low-heeled boots, throw a big coat over it all, and head out the door, and goddamn they look fresh.

Modern mom jean babe Camille Rowe via Pintrest.

Modern mom jean babe Camille Rowe via Pintrest.

I now stare at the pile of skinny jeans thrown on my floor because I’m too lazy to fold them and feel a bubbling up of resentment–perhaps the same resentment Amber and Brianna’s parents felt as they drove them to the Salvation Army, arms full of pairs of $150 immediately unfashionable jeans. I calm myself knowing that my skinnies have had a long and generous run, and this new fad means I can eat more cake and look like ‘90s Christian Slater.


Note from the author: These Acne “Boy” jeans are f’ing perfect.

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  • Maria

    High rise skinnies are still just fine. I did love low rise jeans….but they make legs look like they are four inches shorter, and I am tired of shirts that are four feel long.

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