Best Jeans Styles For Petites: How To Make Your Leg Look Longer

petite brunette woman wearing a green blouse and boot cut jeans, one of the best jeans styles for petites

There’s nothing better than finding that pair of jeans that fits your body and makes you feel fantastic every time you wear them. Sometimes when we are looking online or shopping in stores all of the different styles and washes can be overwhelming. We wonder which are the best jeans styles for petites.

I will be honest. I wear jeans more than any other type of pants. They are truly a piece of clothing that we can dress up or down so easily. So I am going to break down how petites can wear four of the most common styles of jeans we see. Plus, I will show you how your legs can look longer when you are wearing them.

Before we talk all about the best jeans styles for our petite bodies here are some other posts I have written with petites in mind that you might want to check out.

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What Are The Best Jeans Styles For Petites?

Each of us has a unique petite body. Some of us are curvier than others and that’s okay. We have to wear what we feel most comfortable in. However, sometimes we need someone to make us think outside of our “fashion box” and try something new. Even I have a hard time with that sometimes.

Below I am going to explain to you how, as a petite woman, I wear some of the most common styles of jeans that we see in the stores right now. But first, we need to make sure that whatever jeans styles for petites you decide to put on your body fit correctly.

Fit Tips For All Jeans

First and foremost a pair of jeans should feel comfortable when you put them on. Check the label to see how much stretch is in the fabric. These days it can be all over the board. Also, some brands have gone “old school” and taken the stretch out of the jeans. When you put them on here are some things that you should look for to know if they are the fit for your petite body. Keep in mind that if they are not petite sizing you will probably have to have them hemmed.

  • Length. This is the easiest thing to adjust with jeans. If you are wearing skinny jeans, then they should hit above the ankle. Straight leg jeans can be at the ankle or a little below. Flares and wide-leg jeans look good on petites full length.
  • Waist. You don’t want your waist too loose or too tight. Can you put a finger or two between the jeans and your body? The sit test will tell you if the waist is too tight. Sit down in your jeans and make sure they are comfortable. You don’t want to feel like you have to unbutton them.
  • Rise. As petites, we do love our high-waisted pants and jeans. They always give the illusion of longer legs. Just be careful that the rest is not too high. You don’t want the waist of your jeans sitting at your ribs. That is not comfortable. Trust me, I have tried some on that fit that way.
  • Hips. You want the jeans to fit snugly at your hips, but not too tight. Are there wrinkles at the hips? If so, which way are they facing? If they are facing inwards that means that are a bit too tight. If the wrinkles are facing outwards that means that you need to size down or try a different pair of jeans.

Laundering Tips

This is something that my husband and I quibble about all of the time. He will wear his jeans one time and throw them in the laundry. The rule of thumb is that you should wear your jeans 3-10 times before you launder them. If you spill something on them, then wash them. However, washing them frequently leads to wear and tear on the jeans.

It is best to turn your jeans inside out when washing them. For years I used a special denim formula when washing my jeans that kept them so soft. Sadly it is no longer available. I now use this laundry detergent and this fabric conditioner and it keeps them nice and soft. I prefer to hang my jeans to air dry. If you feel the need to dry your jeans it is usually recommended that you do so on low for a while and then finish with air dry. It is just better for the fabric in the long run.

Jeans Styles That Work For Petites

It seems as if every year designers offer different styles of jeans. They do that so that we can be good consumers. The four styles below are probably the most common that we see now and have seen for the last few years. In my petite opinion, these are the best jeans styles for women now. They are easy for us to style and look our best.

The key to looking good in jeans when you are petite is the rise. Mid-rise jeans are great; however, high-rise jeans are a petite woman’s dream come true.

Straight Leg Jeans

petite brunette woman wearing straight leg jeans, a black lady jacket, and cap toe pumps, one of the best jeans styles for petites
Jacket | Jeans | Handbag | Shoes (use code Beth10 for 10% off)

Straight-leg jeans are probably the most versatile jeans styles for petites. Bonus they work with all of our unique body types and short legs. They can go with so many things that are in your wardrobe. You can pair them with heels, flats, sandals, and sneakers. Yes, they have kind of replaced the skinny jean that was so popular for many years.

The key is to get a rise that you are comfortable with and that fits your body like they were custom-made for you. This is a style that you do not have to buy in petite sizing. If you need to hem them you are not taking away from the styling of the jeans.

The pair I am wearing above is a cropped style and the length works great on me with heels. The word sexy is in the name of the jean and there is a reason why. The way that they fit the behind is really flattering. If I were wearing them with sneakers or flats I would prefer them to be a little shorter so that there is no puddling at my feet. Another favorite pair of straight-leg jeans for me is this style from Paige. They fit so well and the pocket placement on the behind works really well for petites.

The style of types to pair with straight-leg jeans is endless. Get in your closet and just play with them. You can wear t-shirts and sneakers, a pretty blouse and heels, or top them with a blazer and block heels like I did in the photo above. They will look better if you tuck in your top.

Here are some great straight-leg jeans. If you don’t own a pair of black or white I highly recommend that you put them on your wishlist. You will reach for them so often.

Boot Cut Jeans

Bootcut jeans fit around the hips and thighs and then flare from the knee to the ankle. They are designed to be worn with boots. So if you are a booties lover in the colder months you need to have this style of denim in your closet. They also pair nicely with high-heeled shoes or sandals so yes you can easily style these jeans year round.

Now what to wear on top with this style of jeans? You can wear lighter knitwear (think fitted sweaters), blouses or even blazers. Yes. Try a more fitted top and your favorite tailored blazer with this style of jeans.

This is a style of jeans that I recommend you buy petite sizing. You don’t want to have to hem the jeans much or you can easily lose the effect of the flare. The jean that I am wearing comes in petite sizing and comes in several washes. I am wearing the Sure Thing wash above.

Wide Leg Jeans

Yes, to the comfort of wide-leg jeans. If you follow here on SASforShort, then you know I am a huge fan of wide-leg pants and now jeans. They can not only be one of the most comfortable styles of jeans, but one of the best styles of jeans for petite women to wear. The key is wearing them full length so that they elongate our short legs. A high rise is also key. Also, I personally think that a darker rinse or black rinse is more slimming. The jeans that I am wearing above are cropped jeans, but are the perfect length for me to wear with flats or ankle boots. No hemming needed. Woohoo.

What you want to make sure of is that the width of the leg is not too overwhelming. It’s all about scale for petites.

Typically wide-leg jeans look best on petites with heels. I just wanted to show you that you can pull them off with flats if you are doing a lot of walking. The key is to make sure that your flat loafers have a pointed toe to them. That will help elongate your foot.

As for what tops to pair with wide legs. You will want to stick with something closer to the body and tuck in your top. Wearing something with 3/4 sleeves is great because then you are showing a little skin on the arms which will also help elongate your look. Light or thinner knits, a fitted button-down top, or even a body suit work great with any type of wide-leg pants.

Skinny Jeans

woman wearing black riding boots with skinny black jeans tucked in with a brown barn jacket, skinny jeans one of the best jeans styles for petites to own
Boots (similar) | Jeans | Coat

Ah, the classic skinny jeans. In the last few years skinny jean has not received as much love as the straight-leg jean. However, they are great jean to keep in your closet if you already have them. If you don’t have black skinny jeans with a high waist, then you need to add one to your closet.

Pairing black skinny jeans with black shoes of any sort or tucking them into your boots in the winter is a petite woman’s closet staple. Dark-rinse skinny jeans are also a great option for elongating our legs and defining our petite frames.

Keep in mind the length of your skinny jeans. You do not want them to puddle. It is best to have them hit at your ankle or a little above for the best look.

You want to balance the skinny bottom with a less structured top. That is where is can be a little tricky for petites. We don’t want to wear something overwhelming with them like a tunic, caftan or mumu. Think a soft t-shirt, a blouse that is a little flowy, or a boyfriend-style button-down tucked in with the sleeves rolled up. You can even throw a structured jacket over them with heels. As far as shoes go you can pair your skinny jeans with pointy-toe flats and loafers, sandals, pumps, and knee boots.

Here are some of my favorite skinny jeans for petites.

Thanks, Let’s Keep In Touch

Thanks so much for stopping by my post today. I hope that you found some ways to style your jeans so that you feel great in them and walk a little taller. The best jeans styles for you are ultimately what you feel best in. Sometimes it’s hard to try a new style so I hope this post encourages you to try something new for your petite frame.

You can also find me on Instagram and Pinterest. I would love for you to follow me there. I also have a newsletter that I send out every Sunday morning. In it, I share things that I don’t share on other platforms. I hope you will sign up by clicking here.

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