Five Easy and Stylish Ways to Wear a Denim Jacket with Jeans

Double denim done right.

The thought of wearing a denim jacket with jeans is enough to turn some people pale. The dreaded double denim (Canadian tuxedo?) is a combination that people instantly turn their noses up at. But if you’re even remotely interested in fashion, you’ll have noticed that it’s a relatively common look and one that many people are able to pull off.

The key to making the fit work is to add contrast to the outfit. You want the jacket and the jeans to be in a different shade or color of denim. You’ll also benefit from wearing a sweater or t-shirt with a shade that differs from that of the jacket. Then you just need to choose items that fit and wear them confidently.

In this article, I’ll share five tips that show how to wear a denim jacket with jeans and look great while doing so.

How to Wear a Denim Jacket with Jeans: 6 Easy Rules

1. Choose Contrasting Colors

Black Denim Jacket Check Shirt Skinny Jeans Jeans
The Brdwlk

What most people dislike about double denim isn’t the fact that both upper and bottoms are made from the same material. It’s that the two materials match too closely. So the easiest way to avoid this happening is to choose a denim jacket and jeans in contrasting colors. For example, I have a black denim jacket that I wear with all my jeans from light blue to navy. I’m willing to bet that most people don’t even realize that the look is double denim.

2. Choose Contrasting Shades

Denim jacket navy jeans

Another way to avoid your jeans and jacket matching too closely is to ensure the shades are different. This is most likely to be relevant if your denim jacket is blue. Just make sure that when you wear your jacket you pair it with a pair of jeans in a contrasting shade of blue. So wear a navy jacket with a light blue pair of jeans or vice versa.

3. Get the Fit Right

Denim jacket blue jeans brown boots

An outfit always looks best when you choose pieces that fit well. And this is just as important, if not more important, with polarizing choices like double denim. And don’t be afraid to choose contrasting fits. Wearing an oversized denim jacket and with slim or skinny jeans will add a layer of contrast to your outfit that you wouldn’t otherwise have.

4. Wear Dark, Unwashed shades

Denim Jacket Navy Chinos

It’s easier to wear double denim in similar shades if the denim is dark and not washed. Navy jeans and a navy jacket looks smarter than the same look in apair of heavily washed jeans. Black jeans with a black jacket can also work.

5. Break the Denim Up

Denim jacket black t-shirt

Wearing a denim shirt with jeans is a strong look. Let that become the focus of the outfit by wearing it with a t-shirt in a neutral color that contrasts with the colors of the jacket. For example, if you are wearing dark denim, choose a t-shirt in white or light gray and if you are wearing light denim, choose one in navy or charcoal. This will also serve to break up the double denim. Plain sweaters will also work.

6. Lean Into It

Black jeans denim jacket

You didn’t choose to wear a denim jacket with jeans by accident. So our final tip is simply to lean into the look. Wearing a denim jacket with jeans needs to be a conscious choice and as long as the pieces fit well and you wear it confidently then it’s going to look good.

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Duncan Elder

Duncan is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Boardwalk. He's a menswear writer who has spent the last 15 years developing his own sense of style, which lies at the cross-section of mid-noughties indie and Uniqlo-inspired minimalism.

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