Jeans: The Eternal Dilemma

A friend commented after we returned from a recent get-together, “Wow, there was a lot of inappropriate back fat.” It was a statement, not a judgment. Not only did I agree, but I was also a likely exhibitor. Full-time caring for small children means a lot of bending, squatting and other contortions. And while the current cut of pants may be more flattering than those of the past, it’s not at all forgiving in the coverage arena. Plumber’s butt isn’t so much a risk as a certainty to be minimized by strategically placing one’s back out of sight.

The current trend in jeans is low rise and straight leg or boot cut. A wider cut at the bottom, instead of a tapered one, is almost universally flattering. The low rise gives, but the low rise also takes away. The low rise provides less of a surface area for the bum, so it gives the illusion that the bum is smaller. In the front, it makes the pelvic area look normally sized, rather than something that goes halfway up one’s torso. But what gets added in flattering illusion gets paid for with practical problems. Since the jeans sit below the waist, they fall down more easily since they’re starting at a wider point. Also, they start lower, so there’s less room to fall.

Annoyed by this conundrum, I delved into my closet last night and unearthed the several pairs of Levi’s 560s for juniors that I have been meaning to sell on Ebay for ages. They’re no longer made, because they’re high waisted and tapered leg–anathema to the current fashion vernacular. But I tried them on, and not only do they fit, they give great coverage. The leg isn’t aggressively tapered. They lack spandex, so they don’t give like most jeans these days so, but that also means they don’t cling to every lump of cellulite.

So for now I’m giving these old jeans a try. I’ll see if the freedom from worry about flashing back fat trumps my insecurity about looking large-bummed with tiny ankles.

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