Style - March 14, 2023

5 Questions I Ask Myself When Purging Jeans

brighton butler jeans purging

As someone who has to buy and try a lot of clothing for a living, I find my closet is constantly feeling cluttered. Since I work out of my closet, this can make me feel overwhelmed and mentally cluttered too. I also just don’t think it’s necessary for one person to accumulate like 20 pairs of jeans, right?

Every few months, I try to purge my closet. I donate most everything and give a few pieces to friends and family that I think would like them. It’s important to me that someone can benefit from these pieces — especially the ones I haven’t worn a ton!

Since I’ve been doing this for so long, I’ve come up with a good system, especially when it comes to my jeans. I have a tough time finding pants that fit since I’m a little on the shorter side (5’3″), so when I find a pair that works, I definitely don’t want to toss them. With that said, I also don’t want to keep bringing in new jeans and not getting rid of some of the older pairs.

So, I ask myself 5 questions any time I’m purging jeans. These questions help me determine if I should keep the pair for a little longer or if they’re just taking up space in my closet and should be donated.

Do they fit comfortably at this moment?

After having Blake, this has been the No. 1 question I ask myself when I’m purging jeans. I’ve NEVER been that person to try and fit into jeans (or any clothing really) that makes me uncomfortable. I’m almost back to my pre-pregnancy weight, but my body is just different right now. I can wear my normal size 2 in some jeans, while for others, I may need to go up a size or two. And I’m OKAY with that. The important thing is that I’m comfortable.

Do I know of at least 2-3 pairs of shoes that work with the jeans as they are right now? If not, do I need to take them to the tailor?

I *have* to be able to wear jeans with multiple pairs of shoes or else they go. If they’re not versatile enough to be styled multiple ways, there’s a good chance that I’m not going to wear them often enough. One option is to take pants to the tailor to get the inseam shortened if they’re too long to wear with sneakers, flats, etc.; however, they’ve got to be GOOD in order for me to do that. I’ve tailored a lot of pants in my day, but I won’t take a pair that I don’t love. It’s just not worth it.

Would I be excited to wear them today?

We all have those jeans in our closet that were it in our prime. Like the jeans we threw on and instantly felt great. But sometimes those jeans aren’t in style anymore (I see you, overly ripped jeans) or just don’t fit with our current-day style. I held onto a few pairs of jeans way too long because I used to love them… but it’s better to make space for a new pair that you feel excited to wear instead of keeping some for nostalgia’s sake.

When was the last time I wore them?

This ties to the last question — if I haven’t worn a pair of jeans in 6 months, they’re gone. Period.

Do I have anything else similar?

I always tend to gravitate toward the same style of jeans, so I force myself to get outside of my comfort zone more and more. But for a while, my closet was made up of 90% skinny jeans. You might need a few pairs of similar-style jeans in different colors, but there’s no need to have multiple pairs of identical jeans. I always opt for the following styles of denim:

+ classic straight leg, dark denim (usually for more formal looks)

+ dark skinny jeans (perfect to wear under boots or with sneakers)

+ black skinny jeans

+ black straight leg jeans (love this pair with the ripped knees)

+ some sort of “mom jean”

+ straight leg, light wash denim (this always feels more casual)

+ cropped ankle denim in a neutral wash

+ white jeans in either skinny or straight-leg wash

+ 1-2 pairs of whatever cut is currently trendy (wide-leg is it at the moment)

Need to refresh your closet? I’ve linked my favorite jeans below!