Fall Trends Week continues here on the blog, and I’m back today with the most asked-about wardrobe category of all: Denim Trends for Fall 2023.
photo credit: Evereve
This may well be the most polarizing topic we discuss in this community! 😂 After all, each woman has a unique body and a unique set of lifestyle needs, so no one denim silhouette is perfect for everyone all the time.
Women also vary in how much they value being on trend. Some of us love to try new things and enjoy staying on top of the latest styles and silhouettes. Others work hard to find the denim styles that work best for their bodies and lifestyles, and they’re going to stick with those no matter what the trend reports say.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Women’s Pant Styles and Hem Lengths Demystified
The good news is, pretty much everything goes right now. You can look fashionable in just about any denim silhouette, as long as you style them with other modern pieces and wear them with confidence. And, of course, good fit and proportion is key to any stylish ensemble.
All that to say, these posts on fall trends are simply meant to be informative. It’s up to you to figure out if you want to wear them… or not.
What Jeans are in Style for 2023
Before dive in, I want to mention that I worked very hard to find a photo for each style or trend that represents the exact look I’m trying to describe. I especially paid attention to the length of the jeans as worn by the model (often they are shown too short) as well as the shoe pairings. I hope this helps you see how they might be styled in a way that is current and on trend.
#1. Wide Leg & Trouser Jeans
photo credit: PAIGE
Wide leg jeans are finally hitting the mainstream this fall, and I’m getting on board! The fit is full from hip to ankle; and they can be cropped, ankle, or full length.
This style can definitely make you look wider than you are, making it something of an acquired taste, but I think it’s really fresh and fun when done right. The key is to define the waist. You do this by tucking your top, wearing a short or fitted top, or adding a structured blazer or jacket.
You can find wide leg jeans in all washes and colors of denim, but light and medium washes still seem to dominate the racks at most mainstream stores this season. I’m also seeing some fun colors, such as chocolate brown, burgundy, olive, and the rust shown above. I rounded up a bunch of different options at a variety of price points below.
#2. Flared Leg Silhouettes
photo credit: J.Crew
Flares aren’t new, but they’re still going strong this fall, so I felt like they deserved a mention here. This is my favorite denim silhouette, so I’m thrilled to see them sticking around. The fit is straight or slim through the hips and thighs, and then it widens from knee to ankle, usually with a leg opening of 20″ or more.
(Typically a leg opening smaller than 20″ is considered a bootcut, but you will see the terms bootcut and flare used interchangeably on many retailer websites. You can read more about Denim Measurements here if you need more guidance on figuring that out.)
Mid and high rises look the most current to my eye, but low-rise styles are on their way back. We’re seeing all lengths in flares right now, from the traditional floor-grazing style to the newer crop and ankle-lengths.
Raw hems and traditional finished hems are both out there, but I feel like finished hems are more prevalent this season. Washes are everything from dark to light, with medium washes being the most versatile.
Because wider leg openings make your legs look shorter, flares look best with a bit of a heel. Platform sandals, clogs, and pointed toe boots (as shown above) are current shoe trends that look great with flares. If you want to wear sneakers or flats with flares, I recommend a crop or ankle-length style.
#3. Straight Leg Jeans
photo credit: Madewell
Straight leg jeans have pretty much replaced skinnies for a classic denim style, and I find them most versatile of the three silhouettes included in this list. The fit is streamlined from hip to hem. They can be cropped, ankle-length, or full length; but the longer, relaxed styles are definitely more on trend for fall 2023.
I’m seeing everything from the mid-rise slim, straight ankle jeans, to the high-rise floor-grazing styles with a relaxed column fit. We’re also going to start seeing the return of the low-slung, slouchy fits, but I feel like that will mostly appeal to the younger crowd.
I’m also noticing that there aren’t as many raw hems this year, and that goes for all denim styles. I still see them, and I still wear them, but they aren’t as ubiquitous as they once were.
You can wear all types of shoes and heel heights with straight leg jeans; it all depends on the length and silhouette of the jeans and the overall vibe you’re going for. The possibilities here are virtually endless.
I like to wear my slim straight ankle jeans with loafers and mules and sometimes clogs, and I’m planning to try them with ballet flats (as pictured above) this season. I tend to save my boots and booties for my flares, bootcut, and wide leg jeans.
#4. Midi and Maxi Skirts
photo credit: Mango
While we are talking about denim trends, I would be remiss not to mention denim skirts, as they are making a huge comeback this year.
We’re seeing lots of denim midi and maxi skirts, and denim mini skirts are also trending, but the classic knee-length pencil skirt isn’t as prominent. That said, if you love that style, wear it with confidence. They’re definitely out there.
I like some of the denim midi skirts I’ve tried, but it’s very hard to keep them in stock! I rounded up some options below.
#5. Patch Pockets
photo credit: Evereve
Okay, now we’re getting into some of the more trendy elements I’m seeing on the various denim silhouettes mentioned above, and the front patch pockets are everywhere this year.
At first I wasn’t a fan, but now I kind of like the effect. It adds interest, and it’s something fun and different. You will usually see these on wide leg and flared silhouettes.
photo credit: Anthropologie
Utility-inspired styles are trending big time this fall. Think cargo pockets and diagonal seams. This is definitely a more dramatic look that might not appeal to the majority of you; it certainly isn’t for me, but if you think it’s fun, go for it!
#7. Barrel Leg
photo credit: Nordstrom
Barrel leg jeans are a version of straight leg jeans. The fit is loose in the thighs and tapered to the ankle, and they’re usually cropped or ankle-length. I see these as an elevated version of the “mom jean.”
They work best with a tucked-in top or a fitted style, and shoe pairings can range from sneakers to heels. This is definitely a style I want to play around with this fall.
Are skinny jeans in style for 2023?
I’m sure you will notice that skinny jeans are NOT in this list. That doesn’t mean you won’t see them in stores (the retailers carry what sells, and many women are reluctant to give up on styles they have grown comfortable with.) But skinny jeans are definitely on the downward slope of the trend spectrum.
If you’re not ready to give up your skinny jeans, by all means, keep wearing them. To stay looking current, try matching them with more updated styles of tops and footwear.
But just remember, we all had to get used to skinny jeans back in the day. Sometimes it takes a while for our eyes to adjust to new trends, and what looks flattering to you today might change as the newer denim silhouettes become more mainstream.
For example, I used to detest crop flares. I thought they looked ridiculous on everyone. (I’m sure some of you still do.) Well, now I love them!
So take this list of denim trends for fall 2023 with a grain of salt, but don’t write them off just because you don’t like them at first. Part of staying current and not getting stuck in a style rut is being open to trying new things.
That doesn’t mean we should all jump on every trend that comes down the pike, either, so be selective and wear what feels authentic to you.
The most important thing is to have fun with fashion, and wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident!
Stay In Touch
If you liked this post, be sure you’re signed up for my email newsletter. In addition to my most recent blog posts, you’ll receive exclusive newsletter content like special sales, my newest favorite finds, and an occasional peek behind the scenes — all delivered right to your inbox.
I would also love for you to join my JLS Fashion Insiders Facebook Group! This is a friendly place to discuss all matters of fashion and style with other women, share your outfits, get advice, and stay up to date on all the happenings in our community.
This post contains affiliate links. When you shop through my links, it helps support my business (at no additional cost to you) so thank you!