Thursday, August 4, 2016

Review: Banana Republic Denim.

I ordered two pairs of deeply discounted jeans from Banana Republic because the pair I bought last year is still a favorite. They arrived and I tried them on. Huh. One pair was definitely getting returned by the other was okay. Not life changing, but okay. Then I took pictures for the review and damn. No joy was sparked AT ALL. Obviously I texted Marianne immediately:

A: I bought two pairs of jeans from BR to review. I'd fully intended on keeping one of them until I saw the photos. Help.

M: Well now I need to see.

A: *sends photos*

M: Yeah no.

A: Right? 

M: Just nah.

A: Thank you. They were $26 and $46 and meh.


A: I should save for my true love jeans, yes?

M: Duh.

A: sigh

Okay, so the first pair is the Distressed Straight Cropped Jean which were a deeply discounted $26 (and are nearly out of stock.) I bought them because the stock photo led me to believe there was potential:

Slouchy, distressed, kinda cute, right? Heh:

Don't I look thrilled? And the fun doesn't stop there, the rear view is where it really falls apart fast: 



NEWP. I love the undone hem but there is no excuse for those dumpy mom-jean pockets. Just none. I mean, there's a reason our blog is called Looks Good From The Back, because that's what you should want, right? 

The next pair I tried was the Indigo Skinny Ankle Jean (somehow different from the identical medium wash Skinny Ankle Jean and the Bi-Stretch Skinny Ankle Jean and the Heritage Skinny Ankle jean. Come on, BR. You're killing me.)

They're...fine. I mean, nothing wrong with them except they're completely underwhelming. The fit was okay, the rise was fine, and the rear view is definitely an improvement over the last pair:

I paid $46 for them (they're $48 right now) which isn't a bad price for jeans. But! They started sliding down in the back seconds after I'd put them on and that's such a pet peeve of mine. Too much stretch. (Is this a universal problem? I just hate jeans that won't stay put.) And honestly, I just think I can do better. They don't spark joy, you guys. 


  1. OK, I feel like a little bit of an idiot here, but maybe you can help. I used to consider myself a very fashion-forward person but that's been on a steep decline in the past few years. (Busy, babies, body changes, etc. etc. etc.) Anyway, I don't think either pair of jeans looks terrible (even the mom jeans). So help. Can you do a side by side photo comparison of the jeans next to jeans you love? Maybe point out what we (I!) should be looking for when I try on jeans? Help, help, help.

    1. Hi Heather! Some of this comes down to personal aesthetics and some of it to fit. (And joy sparking.) Both pairs are fine as far as fashion goes but something about the cut on the first pair just doesn't work on my body. I like my butt and those jeans make it look flattish and wider than it is. The second pair isn't terrible by any means, but the jeans don't really do anything great for me either. It's so personal that I'm not sure I can even tell you what to look for except this: When you put on a pair of jeans you should really like what you see (front and back) and you shouldn't have to tug on them or hike them up. They should feel good immediately. The pair I bought last year (linked at the top of this entry) is a good example of that.

  2. I have last year's version of the second pair and they stretched out a full size almost immediately.

  3. Oooo yes. I like that undone-hem thing too, and tried those very BR jeans. So awful. What's wrong with Banana these days??

  4. I usually like BR jeans but these pairs are a miss for me. I like full length and darker wash with plenty of stretch and a medium to high rise. My favorite at BR is the often deeply-discounted Wide Leg cut, which turns into a super flattering boot cut style on my athlete legs. I also found a pair of black distressed skinny jeans at the BR outlet for $12 and they're super stretchy and comfortable. For as much as I wear jeans, and as loathsome as it can be to shop for them, it's amazing I'm not willing to pay more for good pairs. I do find great deals though!