WTF is the difference between mom, dad, boyfriend, and girlfriend jeans?

When it comes to denim silhouettes, most are self-explanatory: skinny, low-rise, high-waist, flare, straight leg and so forth.

It isn’t until we start climbing up the family tree that things start to get hella confusing.

The birth of Mom, Dad, Boyfriend, and Girlfriend Jeans have thrown many for a loop when trying to decipher exactly what they are. Like whats next?! All that’s left to appear on the fashion scene is Aunt and Uncle jeans and then we’ll have the entire squad.

So if you have ever been left in limbo, it’s time to debunk this denim. Here’s a cheat sheet to end your style confusion!

The “MOM” Jean

Tommy Jeans For UO

Mom jeans are simply a more relaxed version of your modern high-waist jeans.

While having more slack by zipper area and a tighter fit around the booty, this style has been often criticized for being unflattering. Yet, that doesn’t stop stylistas everywhere from wearing them. After all, the elongated ass factor is a major key to completing the look!

More than likely many styles of this pant hit right at the ankle so they’re perfect to pair with your favorite booties.

READ MORE: Get these vintage Budweiser tees from Pacsun 


Liquor & Poker Boyfriend Jeans

Boyfriend jeans are the arch enemy to the skinny jean. Completely shying away from the tighter closely tailored pant, they are the mainly a more baggy relaxed fit pant.

They’re the ex’s hoodie of the denim world! Many play up the cropped ankle area by adding a cuff. Marilyn Monroe was spotted in the 60s rocking a pair and Katie Holmes spearheaded their comeback in 2009. These jeans are constantly evolving and here to stay!

From classy to edgy these jeans are beyond versatile. Add an over-sized tee or crop with your favorite Chuck Taylors for a complete boyfriend look.


GRLFRND x Revolve Karolina Jean 

You’ve probably guessed it by now. The girlfriend jean is a more feminine version of the boyfriend jean. Consisting of a tapered straight leg, higher waist, with a little ease around the hips makes this style perfect for a more classic fit. The subtle slouch and slim silhouette flatters the tush area (who doesn’t want that to be perky) and also makes it easy to dress up or down.

Take them out on a casual day with your girls or pair with heels and blouse for a night out. The possibilities are endless.

READ MORE: The most iconic going out tops of our time

The “DAD” Jean

Current/Elliot Dad Jean

Feeling presidential? After Obama was spotted in this style, they’re slowly coming out of retirement… maybe.

This style is the counterpart of the vintage mom fit jean, for menswear (ladies are not excluded). Relaxed, high-waisted, but has more range when it comes to the washes and densities. Did I mention shape is not a factor? Go in your local thrift store’s men section and you catch a pair of Wranglers or Levi’s 550 waiting for you. Then you have hit the jackpot!

Emphasize the fatherly aesthetic and pair with your favorite dad hat or polo and you’ll scream, “I have children!” Or pair them with a belly shirt and channel Aaliyah. You know you want to!

Gimme More Fashion

Do You Like?

Some things are only found on Facebook. Don't miss out.