Just changing up the cut of your jeans can breathe new life into your wardrobe. It instantly makes your tops look different, and changes up the silhouette of your body. So it’s exciting that, after years of skinny jeans ruling fashion, looser styles, like flared jeans, are back in a big way. While more flowy and/or oversized tops helped balance the thin legs that jeggings and skinny jeans created, you’ll want to do the opposite for flares. Balance out the volume with more form-fitting and/or shorter tops. Another option is to either French tuck or fully tuck in tops for a streamlined look. But before you get started wearing these vintage-inspired jeans, you’ll want to know the pros and cons of wearing flares.

Curious to see how petite clothing can fit you differently? Take the style quiz and request a Short Story box to get started and one of our expert petite stylists will help you find the perfect fit for you!

Pro: They Balance Out Your Curves

Flared jeans create volume at the bottom of the leg while nipping in at the waist (especially with higher-waisted styles). This is great for balancing out curves. Body types that benefit from this silhouette include pear-shaped, hourglass, and inverted triangles.

Darker washes will streamline the figure further, especially when worn along with monochromatic or dark tops. Need to add volume to your top half while wearing flares? Balance can be achieved with a stylish puff-sleeve top or shoulder pads.

photo: Alicia Renee 

Pro: Flares Lengthen the Legs

Flared pants create the illusion of longer legs. This is due to the longer inseam and extra fabric. A silhouette like this is great for those who want to appear taller.

You can create an even longer line by matching your pants to your top and tucking the top in to make one long, lean line. Flares also give you enough length to wear your highest heels, wedges, and boots with them. Win-win!

photo: DIALLO 

Pro: They're Comfortable

We probably don’t have to remind you of how tight and uncomfortable some jeggings can be (too soon!). That’s part of the reason why so many people are celebrating the return of straight, baggy, bootcut, and flared jeans.

Sure, they’re part of an overall look from back in time and a sense of nostalgia in fashion, but they’re also comfortable! You have room to move, and that comfort adds to your overall feeling of confidence and effortlessness.

photo: Aditi

Con: Can Be Overwhelming on Petite Frames

Fashion is all about the latest trends. They’re fun to partake in, but you have to make sure that they work for you, your style, and your body. Flared jeans can definitely be rocked by petites (we have some fab options!), but you want to make sure that you aren’t wearing a style that will overwhelm your frame and drown you in unnecessary fabric.

The style you see below may not work for you, but you can opt for a pair of jeans that don’t flare out too much, use too much fabric, and come in a shorter inseam. Depending on your height (4'8"-5'4"), we've found that the perfect inseams for petite flared jeans range from 26"-32".

photo: Grey Suede

Con: They're Harder to Tailor

Being petite often means hemming pants. It just comes with the territory (luckily we offer flares with petite inseams)! While straight pants are easy to hem, flared and bootcut styles are harder to shorten.

That’s because you are altering the shape of the flare, cutting it above its natural width and length. While it’s much easier to find a pair of flares that are made for petites than having to get them hemmed, if you must get them tailored, it can be done.

Con: Flares Often Require a Heel/Platform

Pants with longer lengths are often worn with heeled shoes. It’s a fab look when, and if, you want to wear heels, boots, and platforms. But if the length is too long with flats, you’ll have a dragging hem.

To solve this problem, try on your flares with the shoes you will be wearing the most with them, and bring a variety of heel heights to make sure they work. Or, you can always get a pair of flared jeans specifically just for sneakers and other flats, and another pair for higher shoes.

photo: Pink Lily

Good thing we at Short Story carry a variety of flare and bootcut styles that require no hemming and will fit your exact inseam!

Want us to style you in stylish, on-trend flares? Take the style quiz and request your next Short Story box to get started!

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*cover photo: Hunter Premo