Spring/Summer Fashion

Denim Trends for Spring 2023

Yesterday I rounded up the top 2023 spring fashion trends, and over the next few days, we’re going to take a deep dive into some of the most important wardrobe categories. Let’s start with denim trends for spring 2023!

First, let’s review how trends work. Most trends exist on a spectrum, gradually increasing in popularity until they peak, and then slowly phasing out over time. As each trend rises and falls in popularity, it overlaps the other trends that are also rising and falling, but they don’t rise and fall in synchrony. Older styles get phased out as newer styles arrive on the scene, and your eye will adjust as the new styles become mainstream.

Also, where you live has a lot to do with when these trends rise and fall and which ones have the most staying power. Point being, you don’t have to ditch all your jeans and start fresh every season. It’s totally okay to wear a variety of denim styles, and phase them in and out of your closet as your budget allows.

That said, there are styles that look more dated, and styles that look more fashion-forward, and sometimes it’s the smallest details that make all the difference… such as the rise or wash of your jeans. So… what are the hottest denim trends for Spring 2023?

What are the hottest denim trends for Spring?

These are the most popular trends, as I see it. There are some other fringe trends that may or may not make it to the mainstream, but these are the ones that are the most wearable for the everyday woman and the ones I’m seeing in the mainstream mall stores where I typically shop.

#1. Wide Leg

photo credit: Old Navy

The biggest trend in denim this season is the wide leg jean, and we’re seeing all lengths, but mostly ankle and full length styles. Light washes are the most popular, but I’ve seen some mid-wash and dark wash options as well.

I realize this is not a silhouette that appeals to everyone, nor is it flattering on every woman, but if you’re drawn to them at all, you should give them a try. You may be surprised by how much you like them.

The key to styling wide leg jeans is to wear a top that highlights the waist, whether it’s fitted, tucked in, or a cropped style. A structured jacket can also help achieve this goal.

#2. Full Length, Relaxed Leg Styles

photo credit: Nordstrom

After being on the fringe for a few seasons, full-length, relaxed styles are finally hitting the mainstream. We’re seeing floor-sweeping styles (sometimes called puddle pants) as well as traditional full length styles, and my personal favorite, the shorter full length that skims the top of the shoe and doesn’t have a break line.

I love these for showing off cute shoes, and I think they have modern vibe that is also clean and tidy. These can easily cross the line into frump territory, so make sure to style them intentionally with other modern pieces.

#3. Ecru

photo credit: Evereve

I included this in last year’s denim trends, but I didn’t really see it taking off until this year. Now it’s everywhere in the mall stores and gracing my favorite influencers.

I love how this off-white shade plays into the neutrals but can be paired with bright and bold colors as well. I will definitely be incorporating this natural wash into my wardrobe this spring/summer. If you don’t care for the newer leg styles, consider updating your spring/summer wardrobe with this natural wash in your favorite denim style.

#4. Flares

photo credit: Nordstrom

Flares are here to stay this season, and if you don’t like the drama of a flare, a bootcut style looks current as well. Bootcut jeans are universally flattering, and you can choose a rise and style that works best for your body type.

Pretty much all rises are out there right now, but a mid-rise or high rise looks most current, especially with flares and bootcut jeans. Yes, they say low rises are coming back, but they’re mostly on the more relaxed styles.

You can also find bootcut jeans and flares in all different lengths, so pick what you like best. I actually have some of each!  I like full length flares with heels for going-out looks, but I also like crop flares and ankle flares for more casual looks.

#5. Barrel Leg

photo credit: Madewell

This is a fringe trend that is making its way into the mainstream this season. I noticed a lot of women wearing these when I was at the mall last week. A barrel leg fits loose in the thighs and narrows toward the ankle. They can be cropped or ankle length, and the most on-trend styles have more of a relaxed silhouette.

#6. Straight Leg

Straight styles are still very much on trend this season, in all different lengths, so if the other 2023 denim trends are too “out there” for you, feel free to stick to a more classic straight leg style. I still wear my slim straight leg jeans a lot, even though I like to sprinkle in some flares and more relaxed styles. I particularly like straight ankle jeans and cropped straight leg jeans for spring/summer.

Fringe denim trends for 2023 that you may want to be aware of include split hems, two-tone jeans, low rises, acid wash, puddle jeans, and cargo jeans. In other words, the Y2K aesthetic is strong!

Denim with excessive distressing and holes is finally on the way out. Modern denim washes are light and faded, but not the destructed styles we’ve seen so much in recent years. Darker washes are out there too, so if you prefer this more classic look, you should be able to find it as well.

In Conclusion

I can hear the protests in the comments already, so by way of disclaimer, you should always wear what you like and what feels most authentic to your personal style. Maybe you’re ready to jump right into some of these new trends, maybe you want to wait a while and see how they play out, or maybe you’re going to sit them out entirely.

Like all matters of style, the way you interpret these trends is up to you. I’m open to new trends, but I don’t like to take big risks with fashion, so I’m a bit of a slow adopter with those trends that don’t immediately resonate with me. The most important thing is to have fun with it, and wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident!

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30 thoughts on “Denim Trends for Spring 2023

  1. Oh my, I love the barrel leg styles! I bought a pair in Ecru from AYR and I am wearing them today! I think they’re very flattering but they follow the same guidelines of anything with more volume on the bottom so I’m wearing a tucked in shirt to show off the waist. I really love all the incoming styles, fringe or mainstream 🙂 Thanks for a great post and enjoy the sun and sand. ☺️

    1. I’ve been receiving ads for AYR. How do you like that brand? There is a store in Venice, CA, about an hour away, and I may go there to check it out.

  2. While I can’t wear all the latest trends due to my 5’2 height it will be nice to try a few! I’m all about the ankle length and have always preferred the lighter wash denim! I really like the ecru shade.. I saw a pair of wider denim in that color at the store not long after you purchased a pair from Evereve I think it was!
    Have a great day enjoy the sunshine!

  3. Yay! I bought ecru jeans last year…on eBay! 😆

    I think I have a little of everything on this list except the barrel ones. I’m willing to try them on. Great post!!!

  4. I can’t see the barrel Jean being flattering on anyone. It’s like the styles come out catering to the younger crowd. I really think anything goes these days but tweak it some to be current for sure. I’m ready for Spring to wear straight crop with mules, clogs and sandals too. Have fun at the pool relaxing. I woke up to 2” of snow in NW Oregon. We rarely get snow. It’s pretty.

  5. Oh wow!!!! Barrel jeans? I can’t see them looking flattering on anyone. The styles and trends really come out catering to the younger crowd. I don’t like any of the jeans on the models so glad to see them styled by bloggers. Enjoy your pool time.

  6. This is going to be a painful transition…not liking the new trends. For those of us who have had a few babies, the high waisted jeans only add more bulk to an already troublesome area. Honestly, the baggie jeans overall add bulk. The 90s were not that great when it came to style so it’s hard to see it making a comeback and I would say the styles did nothing to highlight a woman’s body:( But I trust you JoLynne and I am sure I will adapt!

    1. Totally agree! Tucking in shirts is not a look that makes me feel confident. I want to cover the baby belly area as much as possible.

  7. No on the barrel style for me. I just purchased the Loft wide-legged in the light wash. If you can try them, so can I. Yes to all the rest. I am really enjoying the flare and bootcut right now. It’s been sunny and in the high 50’s here, and tomorrow 67 degrees! In February! In Indiana!

  8. I love the variety of denim styles! I’ve embraced flares, cropped flares and straight styles such that skinnys seem so dated when I try to wear the few I’ve kept. I don’t think skinnys were ever the best on my curvy bottom. I wish more new styles were available in curvy fit. Looking for ecru and black. Thank you for your great post and enjoy that warm weather! Snow storm headed this way in Colorado.

  9. Living vicariously through you…. looking forward to your Florida photos coming soon! Enjoy pool time, the warm weather an sunshine, and not having to wear boots & a parka 🙂
    Sorry your Eagles lost; great nail biter, close game though. These trends seem to be for younger gals in their teens and 20s. Love the Ecru jeans; that trend I will hop on. Another nice option to white jeans. Have a wonderful time in Florida!!

  10. Great post! Hope you are having a wonderful time with your style friends and Alison. As a petite 4’11”, I really like straight leg jeans. Love your advice and will try some new washes and ecru color. Say” Hi” to everyone and enjoy your time together in FL.

  11. I have always adored flares as the jean-style staple of my wardrobe (and: I’m a curvy fortysomething — so it’s not like you have to think they’re only for vanity sizing young-er women!). They always look so cute, IMO, paired with a bodysuit or Oxford collar white shirt/booties/and a moto jacket. I never got into the whole “destroyed”/”distressed” thing, lol. Those seem like you’re just paying for literal rags.

  12. I read this post while sitting in a waiting room and decided that it was time to try a wider-leg style. I stopped at White House Black Market on the way home and left with not one, but two pairs. I bought the high-rise everyday soft denim and the high-rise everyday denim trupunto trousers. What was interesting was that I wasn’t sure about either style until I tried a smaller size, then bingo, the proportions looked better. They are still a bit outside my comfort zone but I enjoy pushing myself a bit. I can’t wait to wear them!

  13. I notice that except for one pair of jeans, none of them have raw or torn edges – all are stitched. Are the frayed hems out of style now?

  14. I recently bought a pair of rag and bone barrel leg jeans and absolutely love them. They are not only very comfy, but a flattering style for my body type, which is larger on top and smaller on the bottom.

  15. I would like to try wide leg, just haven’t found the right fit yet. I have ecru jeans I bought last year, Mother Dazzler cropped. I’m looking forward to wearing them this year. My favorite fit of all is the flare/bootcut. They make my curves look so good. I remember being so excited last year when I saw they were back in style and trending in a big way. It felt like coming home, after years of skinny jeans, lol! The challenge is pairing a top that’s not too voluminous. You can get away with that wearing skinnies but it’s overwhelming on my 5’3″ frame. I also love straight jeans as long as they’re kind of slim in the thighs. Barrel leg jeans and relaxed leg don’t appeal to me, probably won’t be flattering on my figure.

  16. I love some of the boot flare jeans and I have purchased a few. I still have my straight leg leans which I love! The only trend I don’t think I can wear is the wide leg pants at 5’2 I always look overwhelmed. I enjoyed your post though! It’s fun to see upcoming trends and what may work and what doesn’t. Take care!

  17. Jolynne you have done a number of try ons with wide leg jeans, have you tried the wide leg Mother Roller? They are so comfortable and sit beautifully. You look gorgeous In the weekenders and I am sure you would in the Mother Roller.

    1. I haven’t but I’d like to try them. They are so long tho… I know I can hem them but they’re so long, I think it will be hard to even see if I like them. But I did just order some b/c Mother Denim rarely does me wrong. 🙂

      1. I am glad you did. I bought the 31 inch Mother Roller in a dark wash and a mid wash and I love them. I also bought a pair of the weekenders and I love them too!Your blog has been fabulous. I got onto it during Covid and you would not believe how much I looked forward to it. Living in Melbourne Australia, Mother Denim is very expensive, but amazing, I can’t go back to Levi’s!

  18. Last week I bought a pair of barrel leg jeans from Anthropologie and I love them! Total 89’s vibe and not something I ever thought I’d be wearing these days, but once I tried them on I was fell in love!

    The thing about distressed… I have noticed that slight distressing in the knee area gives my legs a slimmer look. I think it’s the dimension of color and a break in the silhouette that works. I don’t like a lot of big holes and some styles are really ridiculous in that, but I do think this is something I will keep in my wardrobe as it’s more flattering on me than some other styles. I have also found luck with a few of the Mother straight leg styles and for all of the girls who haven’t tried Good American yet… try on a pair!! They are really flattering and make jeans for all body types!!

  19. I own several pairs of the Mother Tomcat Roller jeans — the inseam on mine is 30 inches. They are 100% perfection with boots, flats/loafers, sneakers — I had to get a few “back up” pairs, I love them that much ! Also tried the Frame Palazzo jean. It’s much longer and big more flared (not as structured if that makes any sense). I got them on sale so I went ahead and just cut the bottoms. So many good jean options right now 🙂

  20. I tried barrel leg pants at Target. I didn’t know that’s what they are called. I liked them but was afraid of how they might stretch out. I am so into the wide leg, flare and bootleg jeans. I tried my wide leg with the coated denim jacket from Kut from the Kloth and I liked the look. I’m 5’2 and petite. I don’t feel like they overwhelm me at all.

    I’ve learned to like jeans a lot since reading your blog. 🙂

  21. Still love the straight leg jeans, but I do admire the moderate flares and think they’re cute. Thank you for your info.

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