Style - May 16, 2023

The Easiest Way to Cut Your Jean Hems

brighton butler how i cut my jeans

Any time I post about cutting my jeans on Instagram, I get sooo many DMs asking for the easiest way to cut your jean hems. I posted a Reel on IG recently sharing exactly what I do, but I thought it was a good idea to share it on the blog too so it’d have a permanent spot to live here.

Since I’m right at 5’3″ and I like my jeans to hit around the ankle, I cut the majority of my jeans. I’m sure there are tons of better ways to cut the hems, but I’m going to show you what works for me. It’s truly the easiest way to cut your jean hems and has never failed me!

brighton butler how i cut my jeans

How to Cut Your Jeans


Figure out where you want to cut the jeans. I just cuff them on myself and see what length looks good to me. It’s truly an eyeball test. Remember: you want to be conservative when you cuff because you can always make them shorter later on!


Get a pencil and make a mark where you want to cut them. I do this step while I’ve still got the pants on so I can make sure I like where the length as I’m seeing it.


Lay your pants on the ground and use a ruler to help you make a straight line where you marked across the full leg of the pants. Make sure you use heavy-duty scissors for this step or you won’t get a clean cut. These are the pair I use every time. Just keep in mind that it does NOT need to be an exact science.

Step 4

Lay the other leg down on the floor and place the piece you just cut off over the same part of the other leg. You may want to watch this video to see exactly how I do this. Then cut the same amount off the second leg. To be sure I like how the length looks, I’ll put on a pair of shoes most like what I’ll commonly wear with these pants and do the mirror test.

Step 5

Rough up the hem! Either put your jeans in the washing machine or take your scissors and rough it up yourself. I will pick at the hem with my fingers or get the blade of my scissors and scrape the hem to make it look less perfect.

I thought it would be helpful to share a few tips that people commented on the Reel I posted too. I don’t necessarily do these things, but they may be worth a try. Thanks to all who offered these great ideas!

Other tips for cutting your jean hems

• If you want that “soft fray” look, roll the new cut end flat and take a black emory board to the edge. You can make it as frayed as you like.

• Tip for people with longer legs who don’t want a super short inseam but want a similar look. Seam rip the hems.

• For extra fringe, make teeny tiny cuts vertically into the bottom (like every 2-3 inches) and that brings the fringe out even more when you wash them.

• If you don’t have time for the wash and need to wear them ASAP, I hold the ends together and use a nail brush to the ends. It makes them look as if they were made that way.

• You can beat the bottoms against the corner of a wall or a bedpost and the frays will emerge that way too.

brighton butler how i cut my jeans

Product Details: Cashmere Cardigan // Ribbed T-Shirt // Straight Ankle Jeans // Loafers

brighton butler how i cut my jeans

Product Details: Rib Tee // Straight Ankle Jeans