The Edit: 10 Denim Brands That Are Worth the Splurge
As far as style essentials go, denim is king. Be it a pair of frayed-hem jeans or classic high-rise skinnies, they’re the one piece in your closet you can count on to effortlessly take you from casual Fridays at the office to Sundays spent spring cleaning and at a post-GNO brunch sesh with your girls. That undeniable versatility means we’re always on the lookout for new styles and brands to test out. The 10 below bear a heftier price tag than fast-fashion labels like H&M or Zara, but trust us, girl — the Instababe-approved styling and high-quality materials make it so worth it.
1. Mother Denim Birds of Paradise ($248): While this burgeoning It-girl brand includes “mother” in the name, their portfolio of #OOTD-worthy denim is anything but matronly. Equipped with dip-dyed hems and a relaxed, ankle-grazing silhouette, these high-waisted jeans are the complete package. For a decidedly ’70s vibe, pair ’em with a sleeveless rib knit top, aviators, and colorful clogs.
2. Frame Le High Flare Jeans ($210): If it’s a fixture of the FROW crowd, you know it has to be good. LA and London-based denim Frame is just that. Rock this white pair RN with a snuggly oversized sweater and embroidered ankle boots, then pair them with an ethereal off-the-shoulder top and strappy sandals once warmer weather settles in.
3. RE/DONE High Rise Crop Flare ($331): Vintage vibes, modern fit — that’s what RE/DONE brings to the table. The brand takes vintage Levi’s and gives them new life, taking them apart at the seams and repurposing the denim fabric to create new styles with 21st-century appeal. If that in and of itself wasn’t cool enough, RE/DONE also makes their limited-edition jeans right in Los Angeles with no harsh chemicals and water-conserving methods.
4. AGOLDE Roxanne Super Hi Rise Skinny in Luxe ($128): Sorry, haters: The skinny jean isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Which is good news, because this jet black pair of skinnies is straight-up fly. In-house manufacturing means AGOLDE’s collection of premium, sustainably produced jeans are actually pretty attainable. The perfect partner to every piece in your closet — flowy frocks included — these high-waisted skinnies warrant the investment.
5. 3×1 Mid Rise Crop Baby Boot Rainbow Stripe ($265): Any jean brand responsible for these rainbow bright stripes is more than okay in our book, but just in case you need a little more convincing, we’ll give you a few more deets. New York-based 3×1 is basically an homage to denim — every pair is made by hand in their in-store atelier. In addition to limited-edition designs (like the DDG jeans above), 3×1 offers bespoke services, where they’ll make a pair of jeans fitted and designed just for you.
6. Citizens of Humanity Dree Crop High Rise Slim Straight in Savana ($258): Introducing a must-have pair of jeans you need this spring, from the eternally relevant brand beloved by Chrissy Teigen and the Kardashian crew. The light faded blue wash channels spring’s free-spirited vibe, while a cropped silhouette is perfect for showing off an arsenal of strappy sandals and backless kicks.
7. DL 1961 Goldie High-Rise Tapered Jeans ($198): The ’80s might be having a moment, but we’re diggin’ those ’90s vibes. A nod to the classic mom jean (with a decidedly edgy twist), this high-rise style is the piece your off-duty routine has been waiting for. Fancify their don’t-mess feel with a Victorian-inspired top and luxe loafers.
8. Closed High-Rise Cropped Jeans ($260): Borrowed-from-the-boys is German brand Closed’s bread and butter — that and impeccable tailoring and swanky Italian-milled fabrics. Need we say more? Team these side-striped stunners with an embroidered bodysuit, sharp blazer, and asymmetric drops for a scene-stealing GNO getup.
9. M.i.h. Mimi Jean Customized by Nicole Huisman ($345): There’s a reason why M.i.h. stands for Made in Heaven — the brand’s designs are fit for the style gods without feeling pretentious or fussy. Exhibit A: this set of slim fit jeans that feature custom coral and shell embroidery by Dutch stylist Nicole Huisman.
10. AMO Twist Zip ($268): When it comes to choosing the perfect pair of cropped jeans, consider AMO your go-to. The budding brand strikes the ultimate balance of vintage charm and modern appeal, delivering timeless designs that achieve closet staple status fast. This side-zip style? A shoo-in for everything from Taco Tuesday to date night with bae.
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