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How to find the perfect jeans online

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They're the bedrock of our everyday wardrobes, yet a woman who relishes jeans shopping is a rare thing indeed. Since there's no substitute for trying jeans on, finding the perfect pair traditionally entails either the trials of a shop changing room, or the stress of online returns... until now.

Because you only pay when you keep something, you've got free rein to try anything you like the look of, giving you all the benefits of a changing room (plus all your own clothes within reach) without any of the hassle.

To help you strike denim gold, we've put together a few tips to help you find just what you're looking for.

First, work out what you want them for. Do you want a pair that will take you from weekends to a work day? If you're looking for versatility, then a straight or skinny cut, or even a wide leg, in a darker wash is a good bet. Looking for something more casual? A looser style in a more faded wash, from straight to boyfriend, will work with trainers and heels alike.

Generally speaking, the darker the wash, the smarter the look, while darker panels down the outside of the legs will have a subtle slimming effect. The larger the back pockets, the smaller your bum will look, while small, high pockets and a higher waist will emphasise and enhance.

Once you've found a style you like, it really is worth buying a couple of pairs in different colours or washes - or even two identical pairs you can rotate. Bear in mind that different brands use different fit models, and these will change over time - so if you find something you love, pounce on it! Because of the variation in sizes between styles and brands, it's always a good idea to add a size up and a size down.

To extend the life of your denim and minimise fading, try to wash them as little as possible, and when you do, use cool water and minimal detergent, advises Finery denim designer, Merje Laiapea. Styles with more stretch will lose their shape over time, so if you want something with long-term value, look for denim with no stretch whatsoever.

STYLE GUIDE

SKINNY

SKINNY

The ultimate all-rounder, there's a skinny style to suit everyone. How much stretch you have is down to personal preference. While they might feel more comfortable initially, bear in mind that the higher the percentage of stretch, the more likely they are to lose their shape over the course of a day. Ankle boots are a skinny jean's best friend.

BOYFRIEND

BOYFRIEND

Loose-fitting and slouchy, and typically worn rolled-up, they're an off-duty staple that suits most shapes. Perfect with trainers or high-tops, they'll also look great paired with heels.

MOM

MOM

High-waisted, with a relaxed fit around the hips and a slightly tapered leg, mom jeans will add or enhance curves. Wear with heels to keep the look modern.

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STRAIGHT

If you love the versatility of skinny jeans but want a fresh update, straight jeans are the answer. Depending on the wash, these will see you through most eventualities. Wear them cropped to the ankle with trainers, sandals or heels.

BOOTCUT-1

BOOTCUT

Somewhere between a slim cut and a flare and having a renaissance thanks to its flattering cut (it's great for balancing curvy hips and thighs). If you're looking for a classic fit you can wear to work and your style is typically smart, these could be for you.

FLARED

FLARED

Indisputably retro, flared styles look great if you have narrow hips and long, lean legs, but they'll also work to balance curvy hips and thighs. If you're petite, a cropped flare looks best.

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WIDE LEG

While a flare kicks out below the knee, a wide leg starts to flare out from the hips in a straight line. If you're an hourglass or pear shape, you'll find wide-legs flattering, but they're also a winner for narrow hips. Choose full length and wear long over trainers or heels, or choose a cropped style.

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