Want jeans that fit? One word: Stretch. Jordache Jeans design director Nicole Grimaldi breaks it down: "A jean without stretch, which is 100 percent cotton, is less forgiving; it doesn't conform to the body naturally," she says. "Check the label for one or two percent Lycra or spandex, or a blend of polyester, which gives stretch." Here, more things to look for:
Q: Should I send my jeans to the dry cleaners? If not, what's the best way to wash them?
A: Dry-cleaning isn't usually necessary. Liz Munoz, the president of Lucky Brand Jeans, explains, "it all depends on what you want the jeans to look like after you wash them. If you don't mind them fading, wash them in the washing machine with warm water and detergent, then put them in the dryer. If you want them to stay dark, you should turn them inside out and wash them in the machine with cold water and little detergent." But if you <i>really</i> don't want your jeans to lose their original look, Liz recommends "only washing them occasionally in cold water with no detergent and then letting them line-dry."
Q: I know skinny jeans are in style, but they don't flatter my fuller figure. What other kinds should I look for?
A: We checked in with Lisa Rudes-Sandel, the Puerto Rican founder of Not Your Daughter's Jeans, which makes the famed Tummy Tuck jeans. She says, "it's definitely not all about the skinny jean anymore. "All together now: Yes! Wide-leg styles and high-waist jeans are in for fall." So if you're going to invest in a new pair of jeans this season, keep in mind that "wide-leg trouser-style jeans are a good fit for most body types," says Lisa. "They're not too tight around the legs and they help balance out bigger curves on top."
Q: Considering high-rise, low-rise and everything in between, how can I tell which rise is most flattering on my body?
A: Marvin Davila, the Nicaragua-born vice president of production for YMI Jeanswear, says it all comes down to the length of your torso. "If you have a long, lean torso, then wearing low-rise pants can exaggerate it and make your body look less proportionate," Marvin says. "This body type is suited to higher rise jeans." And if your torso is shorter? Choose a shorter [lower] rise pair of jeans, and then pair it with a blouse that hits the top of the pant to give you the appearance of a longer torso."