White jeans: the definitive guide to the coolest denim style of all

White jeans: the definitive guide to the coolest denim style of all


White jeans are the new denim hero that we want to wear all season long. Don’t be put off by their hard-to-pull-off reputation, the latest styles are as effortlessly easy to wear as they are eternally cool. 

For years, our denim drawers haven’t been formally updated. Silhouettes change here and there — skinny jeans gave way to straight leg jeans,while 70s style cropped flares recently made a comeback — but rarely has the mid wash blue hue been overhauled. But what started last season as a trickle has come full force: white trousers have become white jeans, and this summer off-white and ecru shades are the only palette of denim to be seen in. 

We know what you’re thinking: “white jeans are hard to wear.” But we promise you, they aren’t. They’re as neutral as a denim pair, look effortless chic and coordinate with every piece that’s already in your wardrobe. And there are so many variations on the market right now, there really is a silhouette and a shade for everyone.

There’s a failsafe formula to apply here. 

1. Team boyish-cut jeans with a mannish top, offset by feminine accessories. 

The slouchiness of these jeans (above) is matched by the plaid loose overshirt, which in a crisp blue is a lumberjack take on the classic work shirt that stops it looking sloppy. Add interest with girlish details — instead of wearing this look with sneakers, add a kitten heel in a pop of colour and a cute bag to provide a good balance. And keep hair and make-up to a minimum. 

2. Flip the colour palette on its head. If you normally wear dark trousers, opt for a softer shade of cream in jeans and take the dark tone to your top half. 

A textured top (or a colourful cardigan when autumn arrives — this trend has sticking power) will balance your silhouette and draw attention to your top half. Forest hues like racing green, tobacco and chocolate brown are a winning match for white jeans. But don’t forget to accessorise: a black belt and bag in this look add a biker feel that toughens up the palette. 

3. White jeans are easily worn with trainers – if they’re a lean-cut high waisted silhouette, with cropped hems. 

These jeans (above) are a perfect match for a chunky dad-style sneaker because the fit of them is more akin to a tailored trouser. A flash of ankle offsets the change in hue from white to black — monochrome sneakers work best for this reason here. Casual accessories like a bumbag worn crossbody is ideal for achieving that low-key look — but be sure to balance it with a not-so-slobby top to keep it chic. A loose shirt in a statement stripe worn tied up (or tucked in) is just the ticket. 

Whether you’re looking for a straight leg pair to incorporate into your workwear wardrobe or a wide-legged style that will instantly elevate your look to Scandi street style levels of cool, we’ve found the best white jeans to wear now. 

  • Citizens of Humanity

    Made in California, sustainable denim label Citizens of Humanity uses innovative techniques from laser technology to creating their own ozone process to create covetable denim pieces with a low environmental impact. This 90s-inspired wide leg style will look effortlessly cool when paired with chunky black sandals. 

    Shop Citizens of Humanity wide-leg denim culottes at My Theresa, £280


  • Cos

    Striking the balance between smart and nonchalant, these straight leg jeans will effortlessly see you through from your 9am meeting to 9pm drinks. Pair with a classic cashmere jumper for instant office-appropriate chic and simply add a pair of square-toed heels to make them work just as hard off-duty too.  

    Shop Cos high-waisted organic cotton straight jeans, £69


  • Jacquemus

    When it comes to covetable spring styles, this season every fashion insider is craving a piece from French label Jacquemus’ latest Provence-inspired collection. These high-rise jeans feel like the perfect piece to wear with a simple white t-shirt  or silk camisole for a carefree summer look that feels as stylish as it is effortlessly easy to wear. 

    Shop Jacquemus high-rise straight leg jeans at Matches Fashion, £255


  • Zara

    Boyfriend jeans are the eternally cool cut that never goes out of style, and this slim-fit interpretation of the style adds enough polish to make them work for every occasion. Style them for brunch with a gingham puff-sleeved top or take them into evening with a pair of statement earrings and a bold red lip. 

    Shop Zara slim boyfriend jeans, £49


  • Frame Denim

    Straight leg jeans are the denim trend that fashion editors have fallen in love with. The raw-edged hem on this cropped pair offers a rebellious edge that feels playful enough to wear to brunch but with enough sophistication to take into evening with the addition of a going-out top. 

    Shop Frame Denim Le High straight denim jeans at Harvey Nichols, £215


  • Weekday

    Whan to elevate your wardrobe to new Scandi-street style inspired levels of cool? Then these wide-legged cropped jeans are the pair you’ll want to add to your wardrobe immediately. Style with an oversized collar shirt and a chunky cardigan for a look that would turn heads at Copenhagen Fashion Week. 

    Shop Weekday worker white jeans, £55


  • Mother

    Forget any notions of 70s-sitcom-style bellbottoms, flared jeans are one of the most-wanted denim styles to wear now. Not only do they instantly elongate the legs (standing tall at 5”2, let this fashion writer confirm that flares have my personal short girl seal of approval) but they offer the kind of laidback cool that translates into all your weekend outfits.   

    Shop Mother mid-rise flared jeans at Far Fetch, £282


Images: courtesy of Getty & brands

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