OK fine, we’re finally going to buy a pair of white jeans – and you should too

Post by TM

White jeans are not a trend this summer; they’re a trend every summer. Ever since they first appeared on Sloanes at the polo in 1992 (I assume), white jeans have become synonymous with ‘feminine’ types who stay clean even though they’re in a field full of muck and horse shit and polo men who like to hug them while they’re dripping sweat. 

Actually, white jeans first became a thing when Wham! wore them baggy, with tans and white Wham! t-shirts in the mid 1980s. In a world of stone-wash and black jeans that became stone wash because you had them for years and wore them too much, white jeans were a test in womanly endurance. (I know Wham! were men, but the same sartorial theory applied.) If you can keep white jeans clean for the duration of an entire summer’s day complete with dust and ice-cream and grass, well, you deserve to kiss all the boys. (Wham! knows.)

Since the dawn of blink-and-you miss it fashion, white jeans, as I mentioned, are a summer trend every year. Pristine white jeans look rich, so they’re at home on a yacht and in chic summer locations like Cannes and the O.C. Which obviously means, they look richly out of place in somewhere like a West of Ireland town. So far, so Sweet Home Alabama. When you can buy a pair of whities in Penneys for €8 with the possibility of ‘looking rich’, well, you’re on to a winner. JUST KEEP THEM CLEAN.

This summer, the biggest outfit trend is jeans and a 90s style sleeveless top in a muted colour like rust, forest green or even brown – think Monica and Rachel in the early seasons of Friends. Blue jeans are the safe option, but white is the summeriest. If you’re adverse to a summer dress or you can’t be bothered to tan (but you are bothered enough to bare your pale Irish legs) white jeans it is, then.

White jeans aren’t cool. They’re Big Little Lies mom uniform. But they look fresh, and if you wear with black, you’ve got instant edge.

This post was first published in April 2017 and updated May 2019

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