Can You Wear Dark Jeans in Summer?

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Reader Question:

Can you wear dark jeans in the summer?  I have been thinking about this for a while and was hoping you might be able to shed some light on the subject.


Absolutely!  The super saturated color of dark jeans look fantastic with a bright white top, or any of summer's bright colors.  Dark wash jeans are flattering, and add polish.  Your outfit will always look a bit dressier with dark wash jeans. 

A few styling ideas…

Try a very bright top with dark wash jeans.  Bright turquoise, green and blue can be very flattering on a wide range of skin tones, but they often look funny paired with a standard color denim.  Even a bright hot pink will look almost sophisticated when paired with dark denim.   To illustrate this point, look at how Alloy's turquoise Cowl Neck Tunic, $23, pops next to the dark inky denim (below left), compared to the rather blah pairing of the turquoise top with a standard blue jean color (below right).  

To finish this look off, I'd throw on some flip flops, and add a couple of gold bangles or a wood bracelet.

The dark pair is the J. Crew's Matchstick Jean in dark rinse wash, $98, the lighter pair is J. Crew's Bootcut Jean in authentic vintage wash, on sale for $75. 

J Crew Matchstick Jean  Alloy Cowl Neck  J Crew Jean


I know I've highlighted nautical stripes in previous posts, but in
summer, I simply can't get enough!  And nautical striped shirts look
amazing with dark-wash denim.  The whole look is so crisp and clean,
that despite the dark wash, it's still summer-y. 

Don't be afraid to try cuffing dark wash jeans for summer.  I love the contrast of the very dark wash with the light, light cuff. 
Add big sunglasses, a ponytail and a baguette.  Speak only in French.  C'est beau, n'est pas? 

Because dark wash jeans are so flattering (downright sexy even!) I would be remiss if I didn't include a summer date night option for dark wash jeans.  For date night, I love mixing a pair of tight, sexy dark wash jeans with a bright white, romantic top.  Look for a white top with something special -  ruffles, or embroidery, or in a great texture like linen, silk, etc.  Pair with bare, sky high nude heels (pedi, please!), and add a gold little something around your neck.  Understated summer sexiness achieved.  Here are the items I'm coveting for my next summer date night:

I'm showing J.Crew's Ankle Stretch Toothpick Jean in twilight wash, $125, with the very fabulous Taline Shirt, $95, by Calypso.  This shirt has a Jane-Austen-meets-hippie-chick vibe that I love.  I'd pair this outfit with the bronze and jeweled Up Knows by Kenneth Cole Reaction, $79 at  The necklace is the Lena Wald Love Charm Necklace, currently on sale for $162 at

J Crew Matchstick Ankle Jeans Calypso Taline Shirt Up Know Kenneth Cole Reaction Lena Wald Love Charm Necklace




About Author

Shana founded The Mom Edit in 2008. She lives with the love of her life (his name's Mike) and their two crazy boys in downtown Philadelphia. She loves a good styling challenge (her engineering side shows eventually), appreciates kindness, and usually picks scotch over wine, sneakers over stilettos, and denim-underwear, always.

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  1. Great post – I love your nautical stripe shirt – any suggestions of where to find them? Can you add some budget friendly options too.

  2. Hi Rachel! My striped shirt is by Trovata, but was purchased some time ago. You can find some other cool striped shirts at Urban Outfitters (and some budget friendly ones also) here:
    Check out the Silence and Noise cropped striped T. It would be really cute over a long tank.
    Hope that helps!

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