This post brought to you by Express. All opinions are 100% mine.
My teen age son rolled his eyes at me, and groaned, “Seriously? Those are such “Mom Jeans.”
Ambling over to the mirror, I did a double take. How did I get to this point? With the waist band covering my belly button, and the cut and fit doing nothing to highlight my figure (or lack thereof), I realized I had succumbed to the “I bought it because it was a good deal” disaster, and my son was so right. They were “Mom Jeans,” the very style that I promised I would never wear.
One of the top questions I receive in my Frugal Fashionista series, is “I can never find any good women’s jeans second hand. How do you find them?” The truth is that finding quality, thrifted stylish jeans is a needle in a haystack. When I find a pair, I wear them again and again and again.
When I speak to womens groups and address the issue of fashion, the two items I mention investing in are fun accessories and a great pair of jeans. The rest of the core wardrobe pieces, I can typically find for pennies on the dollar, but a nice fitting pair of jeans can be a wardrobe accessory for years. It can completely change how you feel in an outfit.
I own a pair of dark washed flared jeans and I love them. I can wear them with a T-shirt and scarf for casual wear, or pair it with a great belt and classy shrug to make it all about an evening out on the town. (Not that I get many of those, but when I do, I rock it.) 😉 I wish I could pull of the skinny jeans look because I have a perfect pair of boots that I can tuck them into, but that look is a few too many Work outs away for me.
I love the new trend of all the colored jeans. Express has a variety in red, white, and even gray. That’s why when Express jeans contacted me about doing a Express giveaway I was so excited, but also pondered it. I wanted to be true to my core blog mission points, and decided “Yes, this is a perfect fit.” First, because what is better than free for you, and second, I am all about saving in the areas of your budget that are easy, so then you can spend on those things that matter most to you. And honestly, a great pair of jeans is worth it.
What is your feeling on Jeans? Is there a style that you love or are you still hanging onto those old Mom Jeans. I admit, after the conversation with my son, I donated about five pair that had been in my closet for far too long.
Don’t forget to head over the Express giveaway for a chance to win one of FIFTY pairs of jeans they are giving away! That win is the epitome of Frugal Fashionista style. 🙂
I have actually lucked out and found three great pairs of jeans thrifting lately! One pair was a trouser style made by Kenneth Cole that cost me about $1.50! Check them out: http://simplehomemanaging.blogspot.com/2011/09/thrift-store-jackpot.html
Thanks for all the inspiration!!!
It is tough to find great jeans second hand but I always check because of one time when I had the best luck. I was able to get an amazing pair of designer jeans at a consignment shop. Now these jeans normally retail new for almost $200 but at the consignment shop they were marked down to $10 while all the other designer jeans were still about $40. I asked the shop owner to make sure it wasn’t a mistake and she told me that someone had that pair hemmed so they had a different bottom seam and weren’t the standard length so she could not charge as much. Since I am only 5’2″ not only did I get a pair of designer jeans for 5% of the retail price, but I didn’t have to shorten them myself either!
Mary – isn’t that SO fun when that happens. Altering alone would have cost you more than $10.
I have the best luck with Lee Riders boot cut jeans. They don’t gap and fit perfect on my 5’3″ curvy frame. I also have a pair of Land’s End boot cut jeans from two years ago that are flattering and don’t gap at the waist.
My “problem” with Mom Jeans is that jeans altogether don’t fit after five babies and fibromyalgia (limiting the level of exercise I can do without knocking myself down for the week). But the “skirts only” look isn’t pretty, either. I’m gettin’ there, but it’s a slow process…Skinny Jean-wearin’, I ain’t. 😉
I splurged on a pair of Levi’s the other day, the cut, wash, style I know flatters me. The very next day I was in Goodwill and found a pair brand new, never worn pair of DKNY jeans for $4 (In 4L, no less, that size is hard to find on the rack, much less at a thrift store). Well, at least I now have 2 pairs of jeans I dig, but it made me a little bitter about paying what I did for the Levis.
FUN FIND, my friend!! And for your size, that is amazing. Love that!
My twenty something daughters constantly urge me to avoid the Mom Jeans, Skirt, Top, etc syndrome, but it IS hard to recognize that on myself. Especially when a killer deal is involved. My oldest suggested that I take a picture of my image in the mirror wearing the item on my cell phone. It is easier to be objective about a picture than the image in the mirror. I’ve found that to be great advice.
Her other suggestion is to text the picture to her, so she can be my consultant…I spend the first 15 years or so bossing them around and now I guess it is their turn!
@Susie E, Susie, that is the soundest piece of advice I’ve heard in a long time, and I will definitely be employing it next time I shop for clothes. We can always count on our daughters for fashion advice, can’t we? But it is a little jarring when you realize that they’re old enough to actually listen to.
Oh Susie – I feel your pain. Yep, that is the truth, but at least it was your daughter. For me, It was my teen son telling me they were mom jeans..Some how that just made it worse. :)Unfortunately, my 12 year old daughter is always telling me what NOT to wear. It’s starting much too early for me. 🙂
@Susie E, I am really out of it….what are mom jeans, and whats wrong with a skirt and top? Whats left?
You aren’t out of it. “Mom jeans” is just a slang term for jeans that are not “in style.” Typically, jeans that come up past your belly button (much higher than they should) and don’t have any kind of flattering cut to them. And no worries on the skirt and top – I live in them. 🙂
It’s funny, but I will actually “stock up” on jeans whenever I can find them at thrift stores or yard sales that fit me. I’m only 5’2, so length is always an issue, and though I’m small I’m a bit pear shaped, and I feel that everything is made for women with boy shape bodies. Jeans that fit well have always been difficult for me to find, so now I just grab them whenever I find them. That way when one pair starts wearing out I have another on backup.
When thrifting for jeans I also try to keep in mine the brand and style of what looks best on me. For instance, Old Navy has several styles (The Diva, The sweetheart, etc), as well as brands like Express and The Limited. It keeps me from trying on a million pairs because I can just pull out the ones I know I will have the best luck with.
I have a hard time finding jeans that fit me. I have a relatively small waist, but with a good sized bottom, so jeans that fit my bottom half gape at the waist! Would LOVE to go shopping for a new pair… most of mine that fit are getting VERY ragged. Thanks!
I had to laugh at your story–I came home with a thrift pair of jeans. My husband took one look and said “those are MOM jeans!” I put them BACK into the to-go-to-Thrifty pile 🙂 Now, I always buy jeans new. You’re right, it’s worth it. Fortunately, we live close to a banana republic outlet where I can almost always find great jeans a decent prices.
Most of the jeans I find second hand don’t fit right, but I buy them anyway. I’m only 5’0 which makes it a challenge all the time. It’s an ongoing challenge. I’m curious to see if Express has jeans that would fit me! Blessings
Jen, I clicked on the Express giveaway, and got an error message: “The promotion you tried to access is either inactive or does not exist.” Help!
oh bummer, Elaine – you are right! Hmm…of course, it’s Labor Day weekend, so I have no one to ask. They sent me the link to the giveaway. I know it’s up for two weeks, so I will correct it as soon as I find the right link. Thanks for the heads up. I typically check all my links first and of course, this time I didn’t.
I lean toward jeans that are lower rise and boot cut. After 4 kids and now a bouncy belly, I could never pull of the slim look!
I’m in love with the Express jeans now! I would love to try the new colored jean trend… I’m bad about getting a pair of jeans and wearing them to death! 🙂
Finding good fitting jeans is the absolute worst! The first problem I have is the waist band always sticks way out in the back. So, even if it fits everywhere else, I have that problem. Second, if it fits in the waist, the thighs are too tight. I don’t think I have that big of thighs so it’s really disturbing that I can’t find a pair of good fitting jeans. If I ever do, I’ll probably buy 3 pairs!
I love my jeans but have some trouble getting ones that fit. Im losing weight now. Hopefully that will give me a better selection. My favorite pain are straight jeans with a medium rise.
I don’t buy much second hand, but when I find a great deal on jeans that fit right, I buy as many as I can! Like my current faves. There was one style that fit me perfectly. I needed another pair and had a coupon, so I went online. I ended up buying two of that style, plus one of a different style. The different one was regular price $75, on clearance for $13. I fell in love with the new style! About 6 months later, I wanted a few more pairs. So I went online again. They still had my new faves on clearance – only now they were $10. They only had two, but I bought both. I had a coupon code for money off clearance items, so I got the jeans even cheaper. Even though it’s 100 degrees outside, I’ll wear those jeans because I love them so much.
While I’m both short and overweight I still own a pair of skinny jeans. My sister who has no children and is a size 4 helped me choose them. She’s very into fashion and I trusted her. Paid off as I always get compliments when I wear them with the top and boots she chose. A tip is to buy them one size to big or get a pair with some stretch that doesn’t fit tight to begin with. Wearing skinnies a little loose make you look smaller! A long tunic (so abundant at the thrift store I now have three) hides the mommy belly, tush and hips. The tall boots mean really only mid-thigh to mid-calf show, and that’s covered in not too tight denim. I think you could totally rock skinnies!
Was this just a one day giveaway? I tried to get into the site and could not.
Cindy – I apologize about the link. Since it’s Labor Day, I couldn’t get the correct link, but I will update it tomorrow. Come back. 🙂
I am DEFINITELY the victim of Mommy jeans syndrome. I love jeans. They are comfortable, can be dressed up or down, and have enough shape on their own to hold shape to a softer, middle-aged figure. However, there are jeans and there are jeans. I’ve been settling for anything as long as they fit. Not any more 🙂
I think *most* moms can pull off a straight-leg jean or a skinny tucked into boots, no matter the body shape….even if you’re an apple or a pear. It really just depends on what you pair them with. I *love* my jeans and pretty much live in them during the cold weather months….those or my comfy yoga pants if I’m just staying home. Express makes great jeans too. It’s been awhile since I’ve bought a pair from them, but I remember that their jeans always fit me really well. Most of my jeans lately have either been hand-me-downs or thrifted. My dark-wash skinnies I bought at JCP.
I couldn’t get on either, but I’ll be back tomorrow to try again!
I have 2 pair of jeans. One are from pre-baby days and while they’re cute, if I have an “off day” they may not fit the next! *lol* The other pair are my post-baby-I-refuse-to-wear-maternity-anymore jeans. They are super comfy Levis, but about 2 sized too big. I need to get a new pair of jeans because I do live in them in the fall/winter, but I have trouble finding a pair that fits right and I can’t justify the money on a pair that only “sorta” fits.
I’m always on the hunt for a good pair of jeans & when I do find a pair I make sure to wear them through. 🙂
I will be on the hunt again soon for a pair of good, in style jeans. My last pair were almost new stretch, dark blue Levis from Goodwill for $5 and I’ve worn them until they are distressed the original way, from wear. The knees and rear are slowly growing lighter, and I dread giving them up! Although I am quite fickle, as soon as I find another nice pair, the Levis will become my work pants!
I actually found a couple of great fitting pairs of jeans at a thrift store lately (Lane Bryant’s Venezia jeans with the red triangle – LOVE them!). Not only did I snag them up, but I went home, hopped on ebay, and found another pair super cheap! Now I have 3 great new pairs of jeans, which is more than I think I’ve ever had at once.
Ugh. I hate shopping for jeans. Lately I have had good luck with St. John’s Bay jeans from Penneys, but…it looks like they have changed them (in a bad way). I found three pairs of the “old” style on their clearance rack last week and I bought them all.
I always check Goodwill for jeans, though I’m a bit picky about what I like to wear. I’m not into the hip huggers because I find that the waist gaps at the back. I need the waist to sit at my belly button to fit correctly all over. I have that issue at retail stores, too.
Apparently, I’m ahead of the colored jeans trend because I bought a pair of dark purple Liz Claiborne ones at Kohl’s last fall. I love them! I was trying to get out of wearing regular jeans or black jeans. Definitely worth the sale price that I paid.