White Jeans, Unzipped

Before you assume you can’t wear white denim, consider these tricks. I’m not a size zero or two — far from it — and blanco jeans don’t look tragic on me.

  • Buy a half size or a full size bigger. When they’re white, tight jeans flatter no one. Avoid the sausage leg look—no one is looking at your size tag. I’m a fan of the J.Crew cropped matchstick jeans with platform heels. [$85, J.Crew]
  • You can go cheap—but try them on first. The cheaper the jean, the thinner the jean. With regular wash, thin is fine—but with white denim you can see everything. No one needs to see cellulite through your jeans. I have an old Gap pair that are super thick and cost me less than $60, and I love Lucky bootlegs. [$99, Lucky Brand]
  • Don’t make ‘em an Internet purchase. Sure, I just gave you all the links for my favorite cuts and thicknesses, but don’t hit “buy” just yet. Why? Hit the dressing room first — unless you’re re-buying a pair you already own or have tried on in the store.
  • When wearing white jeans, don’t throw on white underwear. This applies to a white combo anything—ever try to wear a chic white blouse with a white bra? No can do. White-on-white equals obvious underthing lines. Opt for nude-colored underbits. [$5.99, The Gap]
  • Keeping ‘em white. Wash your white denim with solid whites. And don’t use extreme drying times or temperatures. A high temperature setting can yellow jeans if alkali (soap residue) is present. Axe fabric softeners that can cause yellowing in white fabrics when stored for several weeks. And because we’re extra smart gals, we like to carry around a bleaching pen to zap any annoying spots that dare ruin our outing. [$4.06, Clorox, Amazon]