When you're 5 feet 4 inches or under, shopping for the best petite jeans can feel like a bit of a struggle. Sure, you could always enlist the help of a tailor to achieve your desired look in the end, but if you're looking to save money and skip the extra hassle, there are some fashion-forward options with petite inseams out there that just might be calling your name. From skinnies to bootcut and even slightly baggier boyfriend cuts, reward your closet and read on to discover some new staples.
Before we delve into the goods, remember that you'll want to keep these factors in mind while shopping for jeans: inseam length (how long are they?), rise (are they high-, mid-, or low-rise?), cut (are they skinny or bootcut or something else?).
Though rise and cut are important depending on your personal style, if you only focus on one of the three factors above, let it be inseam length. This is how you'll avoid purchasing styles that are inherently too long.
There is no "best" inseam length since everyone prefers different fits. Obviously, the shorter the inseam, the easier it'll be to wear with sneakers or flats sans alterations.
As an example, I'm 4 feet 11 inches and tend to gravitate toward garments with 26-inch or 27-inch inseams to limit my trips to the tailor. But I could also rock a pair of un-altered 31-inch bootcut jeans with heels and still look like I'm wearing denim that fits. You've got to decide what works for you.
That said, below you'll find all the key denim styles, each in a range of sizes and price points (hint: they're listed most to least expensive) — all available online, because real talk: Most retailers only carry a fraction of their petite styles in-store.
The Best Skinnies
If you're aiming for an easy-to-wear pair that'll go with everything, go for skinnies.
These mid-rise DL1961 Margaux jeans aren't exactly labeled "petite," but their ankle-length cut will fit shorter frames like a dream. They've got a 28-inch inseam, making them the perfect complement to any choice in footwear. The bottoms can be cuffed to achieve a true ankle length, but honestly, the best thing about the Margaux is its comfy Instasculpt technology. It hugs all the right places, and it's available in 36 different colors on Amazon. For the dark wash pictured above, choose "Salt Creek."
- Available sizes: 24 - 32
Rejoice, these Levi's skinnies also come in short sizes! The "short" inseam is slightly longer than an ankle-length pair at 30 inches, but, as I previously mentioned, that extra length makes them ready to wear with heels or boots. The fabric makeup of the jeans differs depending on the wash you choose — the one pictured above is called "Luck Out West" — but they all contain at least 60 percent cotton. Amazon reviewers cite a stretchy and comfortable fit, especially in washes with less cotton and more poly blends, which are less stiff.
- Available sizes: 27 - 34 (Short)
Unlike their pricier counterpart, these affordable skinnies from LEE come in petite-plus sizes with a 27-inch inseam, ensuring you won't have to get them altered. One Amazon reviewer confirmed the no-tailor-needed length, writing: "They aren't so long that I'm walking on them or having to roll them up or pay to have them tailored." However, since these jeans are made with a cotton blend, some Amazon customers did recommend ordering a size up for the comfiest fit around the waist.
- Available sizes: 22W - 30W (Petite)
The Best Bootcut Pair
Unlike skinnies, bootcut jeans have a tiny bit of flare around the ankles, which can instantly dress up an outfit.
This particular pair from Hudson Jeans features an inseam on the longer side (31 inches). With a 9-inch rise and back flap pockets that add a touch of interest, these splurge-worthy and stylish jeans sit just below the waist. Already sold? A reviewer recommended sizing down for the perfect fit. "They have more stretch than I thought they would," this person noted in their five-star review.
- Available sizes: 24 - 32
Also featuring a lengthier inseam, which Amazon customers say is a couple inches shorter IRL than the listed 32.5-inch inseam, this Lucky Brand pair of petite-plus bootcut jeans is ready to wear. Its price point is in the mid-range, still falling under $100, but it's worth the extra cash if you're looking for a quality bootcut addition to your wardrobe. Though these jeans are made with 78 percent cotton, some reviewers say they run slightly bigger than expected. However, if you size down, you might just love the looser fit on day two — one reviewer did. They wrote, "[These jeans] fit well and are even more comfortable on day [two]! In general the brand is expensive, but for the quality — so worth it!"
- Available sizes: 14W - 24W
This chic option from one of Amazon's own denim brands, HALE, has a 28-inch inseam and a high-waisted fit, making it a great alternative if you're looking to a) save money, and b) purchase a pair with a naturally shorter length. It's made with LYCRA dualFX technology that, per its description, gives it a long-lasting yet stretchy fit. Even better, the slight color fading from the hip down creates a true denim look you'll pretty much want to live in.
- Available sizes: 24 - 32
The Best Boyfriend Cut
If you're looking for a looser, more relaxed fit, consider adding a pair of boyfriend jeans to your denim rotation.
For a higher end pair of boyfriend jeans, look no further than 7 For All Mankind's pair that's both relaxed and skinny. Its 27-inch inseam won't need tailoring, although you'll likely need to roll up the cuffs a smidge more to achieve the same ankle-length look the model's wearing in the product images — no big deal. Between the rolled cuffs, the "squiggle" stitching on the back pockets, and the laid-back vibe of the light wash (it's called "Lincoln Light Blue"), you definitely won't regret spending more.
- Available sizes: 25 - 31
If you're after slightly distressed boyfriend jeans with a light wash, this equally-investment-worthy MYNT pair is The One. It's technically a cropped pair, but similar to ankle-length styles, this works in our favor — you can breathe easy knowing your legs won't be drowning in fabric. What's more, the mid-rise means the stiffer, 100 percent cotton fabric will fit your body comfortably, while still providing that casual boyfriend vibe.
- Available sizes: 14W - 22W
Another super affordable option from Amazon's HALE, these boyfriend jeans have a 27-inch inseam (also technically cropped) complete with a frayed effect on the ends and a slightly distressed look throughout. Just like the bootcut pair above from the same brand, they feature LYCRA dualFX technology for a cozy fit that won't stretch out over time — aka the most bang for your buck. According to reviewers, it runs large, so pick your size accordingly!
- Available sizes: 24 - 33
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