Mom jeans is an outdated slang term for high-waisted women's jeans that were originally fashionable in the late 1980s and early 1990s. In the late 1990s and 2000s they were mainly worn by middle-aged American women and considered unhip by trendy younger women.
High waisted, ankle length “mom jeans” have since become fashionable again in the 2010s and into the 2020s with younger women from tween and teen aged girls, on up through college aged women and beyond. Many women wear their t-shirt, sweatshirt, sweater or other top tucked into the jeans with a belt to complete the look. The term is thus no longer regularly used, as mom jeans have regained popularity among women of all ages.
Originally a pejorative and derogatory term, mom jeans gained prominence from a May 2003 Saturday Night Live skit written by Tina Fey for a fake brand of jeans called Mom Jeans, which used the tagline "For this Mother's Day, don't give Mom that bottle of perfume. Give her something that says, 'I'm not a woman anymore...I'm a mom!' "
This style of mom jeans usually consists of a high waist rising above the navel, making the buttocks appear disproportionately longer, larger, and flatter. Mom jeans have excess space in the zipper, crotch, and leg areas. The jeans are usually in a solid, light-blue color, with no form of stone washing or fading.
Other attributes of the style often seen are pleats, tapered legs, ankle length legs, and elastic waistbands. The style is often accompanied by a blouse, t-shirt, sweatshirt, sweater or other shirt that is tucked into the jeans. Usually a belt is worn. This style of jeans was popular with trendy young women in the United States until the late '90s, when lower rise jeans started to become fashionable.
However, high waisted ankle length mom jeans have once again since become fashionable in the late 2010s and into the 2020s with younger women from tween and teen ages on up through college age and beyond into their 20s, 30s, 40s, etc. with many wearing their T-shirt, sweatshirt, sweater, or other top tucked into the jeans along with a belt being worn with the jeans.
A corresponding term, dad jeans, has been coined in popular media to refer to high-waisted jeans often worn by middle-aged American men. The term gained popularity in 2009 when President Barack Obama wore dad jeans during the 2009 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. In March 2015, Obama appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! for the "Mean Tweets" segment, in which he read a tweet mocking him over the jeans. Jimmy Kimmel then appeared on stage wearing high-waisted jeans, and jokingly attempted to defend them.
However, the term dad jeans gained less media attention than the corresponding feminine term. The term is also used to refer to both high-waisted and mid-waisted jeans worn be men, as high-waisted trousers lost popularity amongst men as early as the mid to late 1960s.
- Slim-fit jeans
- High rise
- Wide-leg jeans
- Daisy Dukes
- Denim skirt
- Designer jeans
- Drainpipe jeans
- Women and trousers
- "mom jeans | Definition of mom jeans in English". Oxford Dictionaries. Retrieved December 19, 2017.
- "mom jeans Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary". dictionary.cambridge.org. Retrieved December 19, 2017.
- Hudson Neal, Jill (September 26, 2006), "Mom Jeans Flatter No Body", Washingtonpost.com, retrieved October 3, 2007
- Associated Press, AP (July 21, 2009), "Obama: No apologies for 'dad jeans'", Chicago Sun Times, archived from the original on March 2, 2010, retrieved February 5, 2013
- "Obama: Health care shouldn't be political". Today.msnbc.msn.com. NBC News. July 21, 2009. Archived from the original on July 29, 2012. Retrieved March 7, 2014.
Finally, the president responded good-naturedly to criticism of the bleached and baggy “Dad jeans” or “nerd jeans” that he wore to throw out the first pitch at last week’s All-Star Game in St. Louis.
“You are married to one of the most fashionable women in the world,” Vieira observed. “Do you want to defend the pants?”
“Michelle, she looks fabulous,” he laughed. “I am a little frumpy. Up until a few years ago, I only had four suits. She used to tease me because they would get really shiny. I hate to shop. Those jeans are comfortable, and for those of you who want your president to look great in his tight jeans, I’m sorry — I’m not the guy. It just doesn’t fit me. I’m not 20.”
- CNN Political Unit, CNN. "Obama wants people to quit bashing his jeans". CNN Political Ticker. CNN. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- Simpson, Connor. "Obama's Mom Jeans: A Wire Investigation". The Wire. Retrieved August 4, 2014.
- Vokes-Dudgeon, Sophie (March 13, 2015). "President Obama Reads Mean Tweets, Jimmy Kimmel Wears Obama's Jeans!". US Weekly. Retrieved April 16, 2015.
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