As much as I love a good pair of distressed, light-wash jeans right now, my forever loves are those perfectly faded black wash pairs — Levi’s does this really well. They’ve been my go-to jeans for years.
And while the cuts are changing from skinny to straight and wide-leg, for me, the beautiful black-almost-gray wash remains the same. I think it’s the broken-in color and depth the black wash offers that true black jeans fall short on. True black jeans look polished and office-ready and chic, but for everyday (and for this casual sporty gal) I just adore this washed vibe.
Perfectly Faded: A Black Wash, Straight-Leg Jeans Review
SO, friends…I decided it was time for me to put a few pairs of black wash jeans to the test, and see how other brands and fits hold up the my longtime loves, the Levi’s Wedgie Straight-Leg jeans mentioned above. I’m trying Citizens of Humanity High-Rise, AGOLDE ’90s Pinch Waist (sustainable), MOTHER The Hustler Ankle Fray and Madewell Perfect Vintage to see how they all compare to my tried-and-true faves.
**indicates sustainable jeans
Hi, gorgeous gray wash jeans! I love the wash. These are lighter than the rest of the pairs I tried on, but oh-so-cool! Even though I’m seeing more of this full-length jean style on people, I don’t know. I’m still digging the ankle crop for most jeans. These are darker on the inside, so they don’t really work well cuffed, IMO. I think I’d hack them off, but I am digging them with heels, though (see below)! I sized up to a 28 because they’re rigid. They fit quite tightly, but I don’t think I’d go up any further unless you want a slouchy look. They’ll break in nicely with wear.
Madewell Perfect Vintage tee (s) | Citizens of Humanity Charlotte High Rise | Zadig & Voltaire boots or ooh these AllSaints for less | Onitsaku Tiger sneakers (go down 1.5 sizes) | heels (similar, on sale)
These AGOLDE ’90s Pinch Waist jeans remind me a lot of the Topshop Dad Jeans I have and love. I sized up in these, too, since they’re 100% cotton with no stretch. If you missed out on the dad jeans, these are a great alternative! They also remind me of a vintage pair of Levi’s straight legs that I have and adore. These work cuffed, too, and I don’t think I’d hack these off at the ankle. I’m down for the cuffed straight leg these days for something fresh! This works better than the Citizens above when worn this way.
AGOLDE 90’s Pinch Waist** (28) more sizes at Free People | Madewell Perfect Vintage tee (s) | Zadig & Voltaire boots or ooh these AllSaints for less | Onitsaku Tiger sneakers (go down 1.5 sizes) | heels (similar, on sale)
Ok, so you can rarely go wrong with MOTHER denim, but…I think these seem a bit dated. They’re super-soft and stretchy and have a fabulous wash, but I am not sure I’m still down for the cropped flare? I guess I wasn’t looking closely when I ordered as I was trying to get mostly straight-leg pairs. I also don’t like how they bunch on my knees. But gah, the booty, the softness and the wash are all great. Also, TTS.
MOTHER The Hustler Ankle Fray (27) OR at Amazon | Madewell Perfect Vintage tee (s) | Zadig & Voltaire boots or ooh these AllSaints for less | Onitsaku Tiger sneakers (go down 1.5 sizes) | heels (similar, on sale)
It’s no surprise these days that Levi’s are my favorites of the bunch. They consistently have the best washes, fits, and reasonable prices. I also think as an inclusive-minded AND a sustainable company, they are one I keep wanting to support. Their Wedgie Fit is a team fav for making your butt look amazing. These are no exception. I did size up in them since honestly, I don’t want to have to break in a SUPER fitted pair of jeans right now, but these do have 1% elastane so they stretch a tiny bit. I’m not sure what I’d do on length here. I think they’re pretty good. I forgot to try them cuffed but they are the same color underneath, so it wouldn’t shorten the leg visually if you cuffed (like the first pair above.)
Levi’s Wedgie Fit Straight** (28×26) at Levis OR at Shopbop | sweater (similar on sale with code 30FREE) | Zadig & Voltaire boots or ooh these AllSaints for less | Onitsaku Tiger sneakers (go down 1.5 sizes)
Uh, yeah. These are way too short. Haha. I tried a petite length here and should have gone with the regular (I’m 5’4″ for reference). While still a straighter leg than a skinny jean, these have a bit of taper and more of that mom-jean vibe. They’re not bad, but I think I prefer the Levi’s Wedgie fit to these. They do fit true-to-size, and I do like the wash, but I just haven’t been as impressed with any Madewell jeans lately like I used to be. Kinda a womp womp pair, IMO.
Shop Black Wash Straight-Leg Jeans
Where are my fellow black wash jeans lovers, and what are you eyeing up this fall? Have you tried any denim favorites lately that you adore? As usual, I love hearing about your favorite jean finds! Leave a comment for us! Until next time…
Hey hey from Portland, OR. Would love for you to follow me over on Instagram for all things casual mom-wear, lots of foodie pics and donuts, some kitchen dance parties and some social justice. xo