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How to Select the Best Jeans for Your Money

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By , dealnews Features Director

It's awesome to score a pair of jeans for super cheap, but it's even more satisfying if you know that pair will last you for a long time. But how can you really know what the longevity of your jeans is before they actually get put into regular wardrobe rotation? The folks at Real Simple have some tips on how to choose the most valuable pair of jeans for your buck, and, to get you started, we've pulled some examples that aim for prolonged life while still spending as little as possible.

First, the site suggests sticking to darker denim, since "deeper shades are handled less, so they last twice as long." They also happen to be particularly flattering, as darker colors are slimmer and more versatile. For example, dark jeans can be paired with a button-down shirt and blazer more easily than light colors, and they look just as smart with a simple T-shirt and sneakers. These Levi's Men's 514 Slim Straight Atlantic Jeans ($40.99 with $4.95 s&h, a low by $7), pictured, fit the bill for color, and they feature a small zip compartment on the thigh that looks cool, even if it can't actually hold all that much before it starts to look like there's a growth on your leg. (That is to say, leave it empty.) Or, if you want to go really dark, try these Levi's Men's 501 Original Jeans in Black instead ($42.99 with free shipping, a low by $5).

Another way to choose denim that'll last is to pay attention to the materials. You likely wear jeans more than any other item of clothing, which means your denim is also taking a beating. According to Real Simple, opting for jeans that feature at least 2% spandex allows your trusted blues to stretch with you, instead of ripping after months of wear. Unfortunately, this appears to be a less popular material for men's jeans than it is for women's, but this of course makes sense; the tighter the jeans, the more likely they'll need the stretch. That said, we found these Gap Men's 1969 Super Skinny Fit Jeans ($38.99 with $6 s&h, $31 off) with 2% spandex for the dudes, and the Express Women's Eva Boot Cut Curvy Fit Jeans ($23.99 with $8 s&h, $38 off), pictured, for the ladies who want some stretch.

Obviously, we're no stranger to Real Simple's final tip, which is to look for deals and coupons online, then buy multiple pairs of a style that fits the above criteria. This is generally easier to do when you're already sure of the exact style that works for your body. For example, if the Levi's 514 is a perfect fit, you can set up a personalized email alert for Levi's coupons, and stock up whenever a discount comes around. Seeing as its the most-worn item in many people's wardrobe, you'll likely never regret having multiple pairs on hand.

Readers, what tips do you have for buying the best pair of jeans? Is there a particular brand or store that you've found to consistently offer high quality at inexpensive prices? Do you think spending more on denim translates into a longer life for your jeans? Sound off in the comment section below!

Top photo credit: Discovery News

Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).
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3 comments
polishsausag
I started buying AMERICAN MADE jeans manufactured by "Union Line" for an every day price of $43.00.  
ttp://www.allamericanclothing.com   Plus[/url] if you check out retailmenot.com[/url] you can usually stag a coupon/discount.  The denim is heavier (thicker) than most, they are very durable, and the fit seems to be ideal.  Plus I like the idea of the money staying within the USA, and my jeans not being made by third world children.  With Jeans buy american is easy, shoes a bigger challenge, then stylish shirts and sweaters seem to be very difficult to buy domestically.  
Kyser_Soze
I bought 4 pairs of jeans on Black Friday for $40. Name brand, good quality & $10 a pair!
Onodrim
Duluth Trading Company has very high-quality jeans (though targeted more toward to 'rugged' crowd, much like Carhartt) and offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee - return them at any time, for a full refund, no questions asked.  Most men's jeans are $39.50, but frequently go on sale for $34.50.  There are also frequent free shipping deals to be found.
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