Stepping up your jean game, on a budget.
Jeans, they're versatile, and probably the cornerstone of your wardrobe if you're reading this.
What we're aiming for here, is to help you kick up your denim game just a few notches, by utilizing varying fits from America's favorite denim company - Levi Strauss. Stick with us, this is relatively easy, and relatively cheap.
Levi manufactures no less than 13 styles / fits of mens jeans (and some of those have variants for khakis, corduroys, and the like), and outside of the 501, most guys couldn't tell you what any of the rest of them are. We're going to be focusing on 3 specific fits, that work great for your average man, but we just want to preface this with saying, if you tried a pair of those iconic 501's on and it completely turned you off to Levi's, we get it, you're not alone. Keep reading anyway.
The fits we're looking at today are the 514, 511, and 505. We're going to give you some info on each, and a few pointers, but honestly, get to a Kohl's (not Wal-Mart, the Levi's they carry are of lower quality, and specific to Wal-Mart), grab a few, and hit the dressing room for a squat test.
The 514 - Sits below waist. Regular seat and thigh. Straight leg. 16 1/2" Leg opening.
REGULAR SEAT AND THIGH, pay attention to that part, can you dead lift a ton? Do you have thighs that are not that of a vegan distance runner? These are very likely the jeans you want, they are the jeans that I own 4 pairs of in slight color variations, and wear on a pretty much daily basis.
The 511 - Sits below waist. Slim seat and thigh. Slightly tapered leg. 14 1/2" Leg opening.
VEGAN DISTANCE RUNNERS, and dudes with normal eating habits / metabolism, these are the jeans you want. The leg is slightly tapered, very slightly. It's 2 inches smaller than the 514, but with the way the butt and thigh fit, it's not super noticeable. As a big guy, I have worn these, not super comfortable.
The 505 - Sits below waist. Classic seat and thigh. Straight leg. 16 1/2" Leg opening.
The 505 for us is more of the classic Levi feel, it's a little slimmer, just a little. The thigh is just a bit tighter than the 514, but not unbearable for a big thigh guy. Leg fits about the same.
For most guys - if you've got a slimmer leg, grab a 505 and 511, and try those on. Thicker leg, grab a 505 and a 514 and try those on. Give em some squats, sit down, put a leg up, see how they fit. If you're unsure grab a pair of the ones that fit best (in a blue jean, not black or any other color - you're not 14), and take them home, I guarantee you'll learn to love them. They'll get broken in after about a month, and you'll be off to buy more pairs. Yes, it really only takes a month, if you're wearing and maintaining jeans properly... (We'll cover that in a future post.)