What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades?

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That’s right, folks. Low-rise jeans are done. Over. So last year, anyway.

If you’re like me and you’re wondering what happened to the trend that was so big back in the 2000s, don’t worry: We’re going to get into all of that right now!


Low-rise jeans were everything

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

I don’t know about you, but when I was a teenager in the early years of the 2000s, low-rise jeans were everything. And then at some point they disappeared from stores.

Why did this happen? It’s simple: over time, we all got taller.

In fact, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Americans have gotten an average of one inch taller since 1950 and are expected to grow another two inches by 2050.

So if you’re looking for a pair of jeans that aren’t going to dig into your belly button or leave marks on your hips, then you need something with more room—and lo and behold! Low-rise is back!


But for some reason, we all started to get tired of them at some point.

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

It’s a mystery. I don’t know why, but they just weren’t as cool anymore.

Maybe it was the introduction of skinny jeans and boot-cut jeans into mainstream fashion?

Maybe it was because straight-leg pants became more popular than ever before? Who knows!

But what you do know is that no matter how many different cuts there are out there these days; if you want to look good in your low-rise jeans, then you need to follow these simple rules:


Probably because nearly every store had them.

The rise of low-rise jeans coincided with the rise of fast fashion. The latter was a phenomenon that saw stores like Zara selling cheap, trendy clothes quickly—often at a lower price point than luxury brands.

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

A pair of high-rise jeans could cost upwards of $400 in department stores, while one from Zara might be around $40.

Low-rise denim became popular as an alternative to these expensive pairs and fit into the fast fashion model: they were cheap to make and easy to sell.

But what happens when every store offers something near identical?

You start feeling overwhelmed by all your options, especially if you don’t know much about clothing or style (like me!).

And if you do happen upon an item that doesn’t look great on you but might be more flattering than what everyone else is wearing… well then maybe it’s time to invest in some higher-quality items instead?


Then, all of a sudden, high-rise jeans were a thing.

Then, all of a sudden, high-rise jeans were a thing.

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

They paired well with chunky sweaters and boots. The hem just below the waist was flattering to most shapes and silhouettes—and it kept the wearer’s butt from hanging out.

But what about low-rise jeans? They were still in style, right? And they had been for so long!

Lots of people wore them: celebrities like The Weeknd and Kanye West; models like Gigi Hadid; even some other people whose names you’ve heard before but not recently enough that you can recall their last name or anything else about them except that they wear low-rise jeans sometimes (I’m looking at you Jared Leto).

But then something strange happened: High-rise pants went from being cool to being trendy—and suddenly all those celebrities who wore low-rise pants started wearing higher ones too.

Suddenly no one wanted to be seen in their old favorite pair of Levi’s 501s anymore because those would scream “I don’t have money.”

Suddenly all the cool kids were wearing high-waisted pants and only high-waisted pants (and they were still called jeans).


Both Zara and H&M had high-rise jeans that everyone on campus seemed to be wearing.

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

For those who haven’t lived through a high-rise denim renaissance, let’s start with the basics: low rise and high rise are two different kinds of cuts on jeans. A low rise jean sits on your hips (about 2 inches below your navel), while a high rise sits just above it.

What makes these similar styles different is their silhouette and where they sit on the body.

Low-rise jeans need to be worn with an equally low-cut top or shirt, because they tend to expose more skin than their higher counterpart does when you bend over or squat down—which means you’ll need to be careful about what outfits you pair them with in order to avoid flashing anyone who happens by while doing everyday things like grocery shopping or sitting down at a table at a restaurant.

High-rise jeans are also considered more formal than their lower counterparts because they cover more of your body when standing straight up; this means that if you’re going for an intentionally casual look, then maybe pick something else instead?


So what exactly proved to us that they were cooler than low rise?

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

You may think that low-rise jeans are cooler than high rise.

You can’t really be blamed for this, as there has been a lot of hype surrounding the beauty of low waistlines: they’re in all the magazines and on Instagram.

Low-rise jeans are also more popular with celebrities, which means it’s easy to get caught up in the hype.

But what we learned from our experiment is actually quite different from what you may have heard; here’s why:

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

  • High Rise Jeans Are More Flattering On Everyone: If you have a bit of a tummy, your stomach will look skinnier in high-waisted denim because it lengthens your legs and emphasizes your torso. The same goes for short people; low-rise pants make their legs look shorter by drawing attention to their midsection instead of elongating them like a higher waistline does.
  • High Rise Jeans Are More Comfortable: Low-rise jeans tend to ride up when sitting or bending over—and no one wants this! High-rise jeans don’t do this because they sit closer to the body so everything stays in place (and doesn’t droop). Also, consider how often people wear their favorite pair—it’s not just going out or running errands every day but working at home or commuting as well! These activities require comfort above all else since they’re done so often throughout each week/month/year…and wearing uncomfortable clothes definitely won’t help anyone feel good about themselves throughout these activities.*

High Rise Jeans Look Stylish With Any Outfit


So far, it looks like it was just a phase that most girls went through.

The low-rise jeans phase was just a phase, and now it’s over.

While the trend may have lasted longer than usual, at this point it looks like most girls have grown out of it.

What Happened To Low-rise Jeans In The Past Decades

Most people will admit that low-rise jeans are more comfortable than high-rise jeans, but there are some reasons why you might want to consider switching back to your old ways (especially if they’re uncomfortable or look terrible on you).

The main reason why many women have given up their low-slung denim is because they’re worried about looking fat in them.

For example: You’ve got a nice figure and want people to see all those curves in your body; but then you put on some tight low-rise jeans—and all those curves disappear under an unflattering tent of fabric!

That doesn’t sound very stylish does it? So now that we’ve established how unflattering these pants can be for some women with curvy figures—here’s another little scandalous factoid:

Low-rise jeans were originally designed with men in mind! But as time went by and fashion trends changed from season after season after season…women began wearing them too!

This means that most men don’t wear them anymore because they don’t look good on guys either unless he has an extremely thin waistline…



So, that’s the story of low-rise jeans.

They started out as a rebel movement, but quickly became mainstream and then fell out of fashion.

Nowadays, you might find yourself asking where did low-rise jeans go?

But don’t worry—they will eventually make a comeback!

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