Remember when colorful denim was all the rage? Or how about when the first denim leggings started appearing in stores? The arrival of boyfriend jeans, even.
It's always fun when a new denim trend comes around, but it can be frustrating when the trend isn't necessarily universally flattering. At first glance, the cropped flare jeans trend sounds totally intimidating, doesn't it? But the truth is, almost anyone can pull off this trend if your jeans fit properly and the rest of your outfit works. One key piece of advice? Heels are a must. Jeans that cut off at the calf can make you appear shorter, so elongating the leg is essential. We recommend a cropped flare that hits at or just above the ankle.
As far as pulling off a trend like this when you're not in your 20s, be sure to keep the rest of your outfit simple and classic. An easy solution? Your favorite black pumps and a button-up blouse or oxford. Look for jeans with a higher rise and a less dramatic flare for the most flattering fit.
Ahead, we found five pairs of stylish, wearable cropped flare jeans that are just like your favorite pairs (in a classic blue wash) with a playful new twist. Shop each look in the slideshow.
Cropped & Frayed Jeans from 3x1
These might be our favorite pair of the bunch. This dark wash fringed-hem denim doesn't have a particularly dramatic flare, but does have the added detail of bold fraying that really sets them apart. We would wear these jeans with simple pumps and a tucked-in blouse to elongate your legs and avoid too much distraction around your ankles, or with ballet flats and a cozy sweater for a chic, low-key look. In the warmer months you can switch out your heels for a strappy sandal and wear them for a casual happy hour outside.
Shop the look: 3x1 Women's WM3 Crop Selvedge Jeans
High Rise Classic Blues from MiH
This pair is like your favorite old blue jeans—but with a twist. The wash is classic, the fit is easy, but the cut is completely trendy. Wear these high-waisted jeans with a tucked in blouse and sandals in the warmer months, and with stacked-heel Mary-Janes and a velvet blazer in the fall. No matter what, these M.i.h jeans have a slightly higher hem—hitting about mid-calf—so these will work best for long legs or when paired with heels.
Shop the look: M.i.h Jeans Women's Marty Jeans
Mid Rise Cropped Flare From Siwy
If you're feeling a bit more daring, try wearing a pair of cropped flares like these with a bold jewel tone turtleneck sweater and black ankle boots. You'll be the coolest girl in the room. These jeans have a deeper wash and a high-waisted fit, so they may inadvertently become the centerpiece of your outfit. (Proceed with caution.)
Shop the look: Siwy Emmylou Crop Flare Jeans
Distressed Light Wash Flare Jeans From Mother
Let your bohemian side out with a pair of cropped flare jeans that have light distressing and rips at the knees. Wear these ones with a floaty, embroidered blouse (tucked in just in the front) and stacked heel sandals this spring. In the fall, you can switch things up with ankle boots, a men's sweater and a chunky scarf.
Shop the look: Mother Denim Hustler Fray Jeans
Frayed Hem Dark Denim Cropped Flares From Free People
These cropped flare jeans from Free People have a more relaxed fit, an undone hem and a seriously dramatic flare. Try them with a simple T-shirt and sneakers if you want to embrace their casual vibe, or take a cue from the model here and wear them with mid-calf height boots and a chunky sweater. For a bit of added character? A wide-brim hat.
Shop the look: Free People Chelsea Cropped Kick Flare Jeans