The Best Jeans for Petite Women

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Jeans That Flatter a Petite Figure

Street style woman in jeans and white blouse
The right jeans can do wonders for a petite frame. Edward Berthelot/Getty Images

If you're a petite woman, you've probably been on a life-long hunt for the perfect jeans to elongate your legs, streamline your figure and make you look well proportioned. But because not all petite women are made the same, neither are the jeans made for short women -- so it’s super-important to know which denim brands and styles will flatter your body type best. Whether you're a petite who’s short and curvy, or small all over, we've got fashion suggestions -- and shopping links -- for you on the petite jeans that will do the most for your compact shape.

02
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Petite Curvy Figure - Try Bootcut Jeans

Paige Petite Hidden Hills Boot Jeans
Paige Petite Hidden Hills Boot Jeans. Paige Denim

Curvy women of all heights can benefit from the way a bootcut jean balances out rounder hips. For petite curvy women in particular, though, your frame will look best in a slimmer fitting bootcut. Avoid wider or flared styles, which can detract from the long and lean effect you're trying to create. In terms of fabric washes, you'll want to choose a slimming dark wash for your jean. Make sure the hems just hover above the floor, too. Your midsection will benefit from jeans with plenty of stretch and a contoured waistband that's higher in the back, such as the 7 for All Mankind Slim Illusion Bootcut line (available in a short inseam, for petite leg lengths).

Shopping tip: It's worth your effort to shop until you find the perfect inseam length in bootcut jeans. While many jeans can be tailored at the bottoms to fit, hemming this particular jean style can throw off its overall look and fit. When you head out shopping, bring along a pair of shoes that you'll wear most often with your jeans, so you can choose a pair with hems that fall to the perfect length. (Hint -- that's between 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch from the floor).

Jeans to Try:

03
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Petite Curvy Figure - Try Straight Leg Jeans

NYDJ Petite Marilyn Straight Leg Jeans
NYDJ Petite Marilyn Straight Leg Jeans. NYDJ

Jeans with a straight leg silhouette that falls evenly from the hips to hems can be very flattering to a short and curvy frame. These jeans work to make your figure look good, by creating an unbroken, vertical line that slims your body, while helping you look taller. To make the most of this style, choose darker wash denim jeans in a floor-grazing length. If you're not married to flats, wear them with high heels for an extra boot of height (and fashion style).

Shopping tip: A petite straight leg jean that sits higher on the waist can be a curvy woman's best friend for sucking in your mid-section when you wear denim.

Jeans to Try:

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Petite Slender Figure - Try Skinny Jeans

Joe's Jeans Petite Skinny Jeans
Joe's Jeans Petite Skinny Jeans. Joe's Jeans

Skinny jeans are a short, slender woman's fashion ally, for the way they extend the look of your legs. This popular style gives short women great height, especially in a leg-lengthening dark denim wash (wear them with high heels for an extra boost). You can choose a pair in a clean finish to wear to work and sophisticated evenings out, or opt for a sexy pair with distressed details, such as the Joe's Jeans style pictured here. If you're a slim petite who craves a curvier backside, you can look for jeans with flap pockets, fancy stitching or embellishments that draw attention and emphasize that area.

Learn more about which jeans back pockets flatter your butt shape.

Shopping tip: Buy these jeans in a snug fit, as most skinny jeans give over time and become more relaxed. Your body shape looks best in denim that conforms closely to your silhouette.

Jeans to Try:

05
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What to Avoid in Jeans (For Every Shape)

True Religion Becky Petite Boot Cut Jean
True Religion Becky Petite Boot Cut Jean. True Religion

Whether you're curvy and short, a slender petite, or something in between, you'll look best in denim styles that elongate your legs as much as possible. For that reason, steer clear of cropped, ankle-length or capri jean styles which can visually shorten the line of your legs.

You'll also want to pay attention to jeans detailing. Over-sized pockets or buttons can overwhelm your style, so keep things simple in darker wash jeans without too many extra details. The one exception is distressed jeans, which can look modern and stylish on petites, without taking away from your height.