I have been asked by a few dedicated denim readers over time for my opinion on cheaper denim brands. I know here at DenimBlog we mainly only deal with premium denim as usually these are the brands which pay most attention to fit, details, denim and washes, however, I also understand that not everyone can afford the price tag that premium denim comes with. It is usually in the region of $180 and upwards, so it can be quite daunting to spend so much money on a pair of jeans.
This leaves you with two options, both of which I do myself. You can either buy your premium denim in the sale or on deal websites as outlined in my Cheap Designer Jeans post or you can opt for a cheaper denim option. When you do choose to go with the latter option, not all of the brands will have a good fit, a great quality denim or feel really nice to wear, so (like I have been asked) I am giving you my opinion on the jeans I wear and the jeans that I think are a great purchase for under $100! As you know, I am really fussy and particular when it comes to having great fitting jeans, so hopefully you will like this post as I am listing the cheaper brands that are definitely worth the money.
Not all of the brands I have listed below are proper denim brands, most are all round clothing brands that do denim, but in my experience their denim is of the better variety. There are so many brands out there that make jeans for really cheap prices, but most of the time they never pay attention to fit and detail which is the main thing that makes a jean a great fit, so that’s why I am listing my top 10 for you which are in no particular order. However, American Eagle, Hollister and Levi’s are my top 3!
American Eagle is a brand that I am very fond of because they actually have a great fit and make some cute washes! They also have a huge variety of cuts from super skinny jeggings to slim boots and flares in fast fashion washes or classics. The best part about American Eagle is their price point in my opinion. You are getting a great fitting pair of jeans which can look really cute for under $50, so that’s even better than under $100! I know their fabric is not the best, it does stretch quite a bit in their normal denim and doesn’t feel as nice as premium denim, but for the price point, I think their jeans are definitely worth it. I own quite a few from the brand and I really like them!
Abercrombie & Fitch
Abercrombie & Fitch do make some amazing jeans! I don’t have the store over here, however I do have their partner store Hollister and I know those are lovely too. I’ve seen a lot of celebs become a fan of the brand (Victoria Beckham and Ashley Tisdale to name a couple) and I think for their price point of around $70 – $80, you get a really nice fit and they are also always on trend! They have so many coloured skinnies to choose from, even in neons as well as fashion prints and the best part is their blue washes. I think they have some absolutely gorgeous blues on offer! My favourites being the mid shades and some with distressing. Plus, they usually always have some sort of deal on so you can get their jeans even cheaper!
As mentioned above, I do have Hollister here, it moved in recently and they do make some lovely jeans. Like Abercrombie & Fitch, they have some amazing washes and cuts, but their back pocket design is different and they are even cheaper than A&F with a price point of $50-$60. Also, in my personal opinion, I think Hollister jeans have a slightly better fit than A&F as the back pocket embroidery is more flattering on the butt, which is a bonus since they are cheaper. I find them to be just like Abercrombie though with their washes and cuts, so you can’t go wrong with them! Plus, both sites have a really cool 360 degrees angle on the model. You can really see how they fit with this.
Levi’s Curve ID
I chose Levi’s Curve ID, more so than actual Levi’s, because the Curve ID collection means there is something for everyone to choose from. Their price point is around $78 and they offer a few washes in the different fits. I actually really love Levi’s Curve ID jeans because when you find your fit (I’m the Slight Curve) they really do fit you perfectly! They hug you in the right places and the back pocket placement is extremely flattering. The only downside to this collection from the brand is the limitation on washes. It would be perfect if they came out with some great washes for the fits, in particular I would love some brights and prints!
Keeping in with the Levi’s theme though, I do like some of their other jeans. I do like their Juniors jeggings, those fit incredibly well, they are super skinny all the way down and very flattering. I know they are not adults, but I don’t think it really matters because they fit so good. I also love their boyfriend skinnies from the women’s collection! In general Levi’s have some pretty great styles to offer for under $100 and after all, they are the oldest denim brand going so it only makes sense they are included!
Before I got into premium denim, GAP was one of the brands that I used to live in. I would literally wear them out because I loved them so much. They generally run at around $50 – $80 and they have so many styles to choose from. Everyone seems to love GAP, I haven’t really met anyone that dislikes the brand. Even celebs are a fan!
They have some colourful washes to choose from, however I feel like GAP mainly stick to their classics, so most of their jeans will be classic colours in classic fits. This isn’t a bad thing though as sometimes that’s exactly what you are looking for! When I used to wear the brand though, I would recommend taking lots of different sizes to the changing rooms, I remember their jeans sizing being pretty inconsistent and I had size 0 to size 4, they ran all over the place. I will say their fits are quite nice though and they make super comfortable denim which you can easily live in all day!
Pull & Bear
Now Pull & Bear is a brand that isn’t hugely popular, but it’s one that I think should be! Their prices start at ┬ú20 – ┬ú40 (roughly $30 – $65) and although they don’t have a huge amount of washes, they do have some brightly coloured jeggings as well as aztec prints and classic blues. I haven’t tried Pull & Bear jeans on personally, but I know people who have and they look good in them. Their fit isn’t the best fit in the world, however for such a low price point I think it’s really good.
Pull & Bear is also a brand that’s becoming quite popular with bloggers. I found out about it late last year and I love their stuff! Especially their jackets and tops, they have some great designs that are always keeping up with the current trends. Pull & Bear actually have a lot of denim to choose from on their website too, they have loads of washes in both classics and fun prints and loads of different fits too. I would say they offer a very wide selection of fits when it comes to jeans, more so than others, so they are definitely a brand I recommend on a budget.
Again, this was a brand that I used to live in before I found premium denim. I know so many people that live in River Island jeans and I do admit that they were really comfortable and had some really nice styles on offer. Just like GAP though, they are very inconsistent on sizing. I have been anything from a 24 – 28 in River Island Jeans and my usual size is a 27, so you can see they are hit and miss on sizing, it’s always best to try them on in the store if you can.
Although they have some really cool washes, including fun prints and great aesthetics like zippers etc, I do find their back pocket placement isn’t the best. The jeans look great from the front, but I did always find the back pockets to be slightly off, but that was on my body shape. I’ve seen River Island jeans look really good on so many others when I have been out and about though. It’s person dependent. They are an English high street brand, so their prices run at around ┬ú30 – ┬ú50 which roughly equates to $50 – $80 at the current exchange rate. In general though the brand are known for having great jeans and when it comes to shopping high street denim, River Island is usually the first go to point for people here in England.
Topshop really do make some really funky and on trend jeans, especially when it comes to fun prints and colours as well as different effects like coating and buttons or zips. Again, this used to be a brand that I had a few pairs of and I still do love their denim shorts, but I tend not to buy their jeans anymore as they don’t fit me as perfectly as I am used to. It’s funny though because I see other people wearing Topshop jeans and they look really good on them, very flattering. But as I have mentioned numerous times before, we all have different body shapes and what works for some doesn’t work for others.
It’s always upsetting to me as I see some amazing jeans in there with a low price point for denim of around ┬ú30 – ┬ú50 ($50 – $80) but when I try them on, they just don’t look as good on me as they do on others. I am still including them in my top 10 list though because for their price, they do make some great denim. They may not have the best fit or the nicest fabric, but they are great for trends on a budget!
Now Zara seems to be the most popular choice among fashion bloggers. I see so many of them wearing Zara jeans, well, pretty much Zara everything! I am a fan of the brand and they also make some great on trend styles with fun prints and textures as well as great aesthetics like hip zippers and ankle zippers. Their price point is a little lower than Topshop and River Island and starts at ┬ú25 – ┬ú40, but they have a huge selection to choose from.
I find Zara jeans to be most up to date with the current trends in terms of ombre, waxing, zippers, leopard etc. I think the main reason fashion bloggers love them is because they can do the fast fashion trends at a fraction of the price. The Zara jeans that I have tried did fit me quite well, however none of these brands do come up equal to some premium denim brands, but for the price point they are definitely quite nice. Their back pockets are plain and the jeans are generally minimal all over, so they just focus on the washes and fit. They are definitely a fun brand to try and most of their jeans are actually under ┬ú30, so that’s not bad at all!
You may think this one is an unlikely candidate, however when I tried Jessica Simpson’s jeans, I was incredibly impressed with the fit. I tried them about two years ago and I actually did a review on them back then as well as an interview with her. I had a pair of the super skinny black jeans and they fit me really well.
I was shocked that the back pocket placement as well as the overall general fit was really good. I will admit that I wasn’t expecting it as Jess herself isn’t a denim designer so I was hesitant at first, but I was definitely pleasantly suprised. Her jeans run between $50 – $70 and are definitely worth it if you don’t mind wearing a celeb branded jean. The only down point is that denim is not her main focus, she doesn’t have a variety of washes on offer or many fits, so it’s quite limited. My suggestion would be the black washes in the super skinny, those worked out really well for me.
– So I hope this has helped those of you who were interested in my opinion on jeans on a budget. I am sorry if I have missed out any other important brands, but I can’t think of them right now and I have been thinking for some time. Also, please do let me know if there are any other topics/ideas you would like me to cover in one of my posts. I am more than happy to answer your denim questions! What are some of the non premium denim brands you love?