These 2021 Denim Trends Take Basic Jeans To A Whole New Level

Maggie Griswold
These 2021 Denim Trends Take Basic Jeans To A Whole New Level
Photo: Courtesy of Ulla Johnson; MEGA; Adobe.

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Jeans have never once gone out of style—and for good reason. Like any other basic wardrobe essential (dresses, button downs, heels and the like), denim adapts to the current fashion landscape. So while jeans in general are always a closet staple, the on-trend styles and cuts of jeans vary from year to year. While the 2020 denim trends featured ripped jeans, pleat-fronts and majorly cropped looks, the 2021 jeans trends bring with them some fresh options.

This isn’t to say that you should chuck out your favorite pair of jeans just because it isn’t a new 2021 trend. Keep what you love! First and foremost, your fashion choices should make you feel good. When you’re confident in what you wear—whether it be in-season, on-trend or none of the above—it doesn’t matter what the fashion rules say. Do you, boo.

If you are curious to see what the 2021 jeans trends have in store for us all, though, keep reading. We scoured the runways to get you the scoop on all things denim for the upcoming year. Ulla Johnson’s gorgeous show let us know that loose jeans are in for the new year—but they’re not the early 2000s skater boy vibes you might be picturing. We also got peeks into what denim looks Colina Strada and Balmain are giving us for 2021. Hint: They’re anything but boring.

Classic skinnies and ankle jeans are always going to stay trendy, but designers have taken your favorites a step further this year. Whether you’re a hardcore denim fan who wears jeans with every outfit or just like to keep up with what retailers will soon be showing in their spring and summer 2021 collections, this trend round-up is here to help. Plus, there are ways to shop each and every trend (You’re welcome!), so you can go ahead and stay one step ahead of everyone else.

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Shawty Get Loose

STYLECASTER | 2021 Jeans Trends

Courtesy of Ulla Johnson.

Loose jeans are getting an upgrade for 2021, folks! This isn’t the denim you saw skater boys wearing in the early aughts—it’s much, much chicer. Utility details, high waists and unexpected hues (like the washed-out gray from Ulla Johnson’s SS 2021 runway) make this trend a unique look for the new year.

STYLECASTER | 2021 Denim Trends

Courtesy of BDG.

Kate High-Waisted Baggy Cargo Jean

BDG carries these cool-girl jeans in a ton of different washes, and the cargo details and loose silhouette is totally on-trend. Pair with an itty-bitty crop top or cardigan worn as a shirt to contrast the baggy fit.

STYLECASTER | 2021 Denim Trends

Courtesy of WeWoreWhat.

Ultra High-Rise Buckled Trouser Jeans

If you prefer a classic wash, you’ll love these WeWoreWhat jeans that feature a loose, straight-leg fit and a buckle at the ankle that you can tighten to create a super baggy look. Consider these the number one jean for all your 2021 street style ‘fits.


Bold Prints & Patterns

STYLECASTER | 2021 Jeans Trends

Courtesy of Colina Strada.

Colina Strada showed us how it’s done when it comes to bold patterns, prints and embroidery—especially on denim. The patterned jean trend is one you can easily wear right now through winter, as well as in spring and summer. So don’t shy away from prints that are darker! You’ll be able to rock them year-round.

STYLECASTER | 2021 Denim Trends

Courtesy of MOTHER.

The Looker Ankle Fray Jeans

With neutrals trending, these zebra-printed MOTHER jeans are a great pick to pair with cream sweaters and brown boots in winter and white crop tops and sandals in summer. Talk about versatile!

STYLECASTER | 2021 Denim Trends

Courtesy of BLANK NYC.

Rosebud Embroidered High Waist Crop Slim Jeans

If flat patterns don’t add enough texture to pique your interest, go for denim with some embroidered details, like these little pink roses that instantly sweeten up this pair of faded black straight-legs.


Long & Lean

STYLECASTER | 2021 Jeans Trends

GOL/Capital Pictures/MEGA.

Do your jeans hang low? According to the Spring/Summer 2021 Balmain runway, they definitely should. We’re not talking about sagging, though. 2021’s jeans are long and lean. Think bootcut denim that goes all the way to the floor. It’s a bit reminiscent of 2020’s horse girl trend, but a bit updated for the new year. Pro tip, be on the lookout for brands that offer tall sizes with a little extra length.

STYLECASTER | 2021 Jeans Trends

Courtesy of Levi’s.

Western Boot Cut Jeans

You can’t go wrong with this pair of Levi’s Western Boot Cut Jeans for under $60! The dark wash works well in any season, and you opt for heeled boots or cute mules, depending on your jean length preference.

STYLECASTER | 2021 Jeans Trends

Courtesy of Warp + Weft.

PHL Plus Slim Bootcut Jeans

These slim bootcut jeans from Warp + Weft are a great option for those who stand by their all-black ensembles—no matter the weather. Plus, they’re ultra high-rise, which is perfect for crop tops and tucking in graphic tees.

STYLECASTER | denim fashion trends 2021

Courtesy of Ulla Johnson; MEGA; Adobe.

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