Before I started purchasing jeans at Madewell, most of my jeans came from Forever 21. That meant they cost $25 (pro) but also that they were rarely long enough and usually didn’t fit the way I wanted (con….). Then I switched to Gap jeans ($60) and thought they were a lot better, but still not perfect. So today I’m here to answer the question “should I splurge on Madewell jeans?” which is something I have only done in the last 2 years or so. The answer: depends on what you want!
Here is a pic of all my current Madewell jeans. I have the 10″ high riser, 9″ rise skinny, the ‘roadtripper’ (stretchy), and the slim boy jean. I’m going to go through them one by one and then give some tips for how I saved money on all the pairs (#previewstatement #nevernotdissertating).
Pros: Umm ok so these jeans rule. I never understood how people got “cool” looking skinny jeans, that actually stayed skinny and didn’t get baggy until I purchased this pair. They are costly but they have really held up over the last 2 years (admittedly this is partially because I started freezing, not washing my jeans). The 10″ rise is my favorite and makes half-tucking in shirts look cool. Cost: $128-138 (black, blue)
Cons: Not very comfortable after eating, and I definitely don’t lounge around the house in them. But when I want to look like I could kill a man, they are the go-to. Many reviewers say size down, so I did. I actually would have preferred my normal 28 just for a little more waist breathing room.
Pros: I never had a baggy pair of jeans until these and wasn’t sure how people were ‘pulling off’ the look, but Madewell did all the work on that front for me. These are just slim enough not to look sloppy. Cost: $128
Cons: I would actually size down in these. This pair is a 28 and they are too big in the waist. I just belt them.
Pros: Another immensely comfortable pair. These are stretchy, hence the name, because they are ideal for wearing on long car trips, hiking while still looking cool, etc etc. Cost: $75
Cons: This pair does get a little baggy in the knees for me due to the stretch.
Pros: This pair definitely screams “classic.” The dark wash is great for teaching. Cost: $128
Cons: Many of the 8″ pairs have distressing around the hips–even the dark pairs. If you like that, great, but on me, I think it draws attention to the widest part of me in an unflattering way, so I am always on the lookout! Also the 8″ rise is not quite high enough for tucking (but I am 6′ tall so on shorter folks I bet this isn’t a problem).
Cheaper Madewell Jeans
There are a couple of ways I’ve saved on cost on Madewell jeans. First, always check the clearance section! But know that jeans go fast on clearance. $80-90 is a pretty good clearance price. Sometimes you get lucky, I got the green pair for $40 just by being vigilant.
The second option is to bring an old pair of jeans to a Madewell store, which earns you $20 off a new pair. You can also request a bag to donate a pair if you’re not near a store. The coupon must be used on full price jeans. The roadtripper pair is $75, so that brings that pair down to $55.
Lastly, thrifting Madewell jeans is easier than ever because they are so popular! I found my Slim Boyjean pair at a thrift shop, and Poshmark has many pairs as well. Try a ‘trendier’ secondhand store like Buffalo Exchange!