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6 Regular Women Show Off The Pants They’d Buy Again In A Heartbeat

Not-so-hot take: pants are HANDS DOWN the hardest piece of clothing to buy on the internet. Sizing can be (LOL read: always is) hit-or-miss and sometimes, pieces that look AMAZING on models end up falling in weird or uncomfortable ways on us regular folk. So earlier this week, to aid on my OWN quest for some new bottoms, I threw a question out to the team: if you were rebuilding your wardrobe from scratch, which pants would you need to grab first? Which ones are comfortable? Which ones make you feel great?

Their answers were all over the map – and below, you’ll find everything from leggings to snow pants to wide-legs to printed crops to denim at all kinds of price points! Each of these pieces are worn regularly, fully-vetted, and well-loved by an EHD team member. It was very helpful to me to read their recommendations and then peek at their SUPER cute selfies to get better ideas of actual fit (like, hey, apparently windowpane print is in and everyone CAN pull it off – added to my cart SO FAST, thanks Mal and Rashida!!!), so I hope it’ll be just as helpful to you if you’re also trying to navigate the wild west of online pants shopping. Let’s kick it off with the big boss…


Skinny Jeans | Jeggings | High Waisted Pants

Madewell 10″ High-Rise Skinny Jeans: I don’t even need to tell you about these again but I will. They are skinny but with room up top and I bought them in both a 26 and 27 for, you know, both types of days. Whatever material they are made out of (some sort of trademarked material) does such a good job of holding things in and being forgiving.

Women Ultra Stretch Leggings: I realize that I had black athleisure and then stiff jeans but I didn’t have that in-between that was warmer on cold days (inside or out). So while I was shopping for my AMAZING sleeping bag puffer, I found these jeggings and thought I’d give them a whirl. While I likely won’t wear them out with my girlfriends (someday) because, well, they are elastic waisted jeans, they are GREAT for something with slightly more structure and warmth for walking dogs, hanging out back with kids but still NOT wearing uncomfortable jeans. I wouldn’t get the lighter pairs, the black is slimming and comfy but you can’t really see that they are jeggings because they are so dark and you might be able to see the faux seems in a lighter color. I wear these on the days I don’t wear my black workout tights.

Franck Trousers: These jeans created quite the controversy on instastory because they aren’t really ‘covid’ jeans. They are statement jeans that are in fact fitted at the waist (AGHAST). But the debate was so heated with people loving and hating on both sides that I obviously had to keep. When Joanna Gaines DM’d me over and over again saying she was ‘personally invested’ in me keeping them (she bought them, afterward) I was like ‘well, I can’t NOT keep them now’. They are cool and someday when I go somewhere I’ll wear them and people will either be IMPRESSED or barf.


Jeans | Wide Leg Pants | Leggings

So if you read the blog every day and have read my past recommendations you might be saying to yourself, “Jess, for the love the god get some new pants, mix it up, LIVE a little.” And if you are saying this you aren’t wrong. But I like what I like and with still being at home 90% of the time, I’m going to wait until I get crazy with my bottoms. But here are my real loves… (O and P.S. The reason why I’m wearing red lipstick is because I shot those photos on Inauguration Day and if there was ever a day it to put on red lipstick it was THAT glorious day. Otherwise, I have yet to embark on the red lipstick during quarantine stage…if that’s even a stage,)

Girlfriend Collective Compressive High-Rise Legging: Yep, I am talking about them AGAIN because they are the true MVP of my wardrobe. I wear them every day unless I can’t for some reason. I recently got a pair of the ones with the side pockets and while I don’t dislike them, I prefer these (more flattering on me). Plus they’re cheaper which is a big win for me as that is almost never the case when it comes to my favorites of anything. I think the ‘earth” color is next on my list. Yep, I still want more. 

Madewell 10″ High-Rise Skinny Jeans: Also known as the jeans that won 2020 on EHD. I love these puppies for the same reasons I always have – they are the perfect wash, the perfect rise for my almost 5’4” body and they make me feel good (so the perfect skinny). A ton of you bought them last year and I hope you love them as much as me. 

High-Rise Wide Leg Cropped Jeans: These are the pants that I put on when I want to look put together but don’t want to wear my skinny jeans. I have them in the brown color but they look more rust to me which I love. A fun neutral! Plus they are really comfortable. I highly recommend but I also highly recommend sizing up because at least when I bought them a year ago the sizing was not correct for what I normally wore. Just a little tip from me to you. But who knows it could be better now??


Skinny Jean | Ankle Pant

The Curvy Authentic Stretch High-Rise Skinny Jean: I was looking for a true blue, well-fitted pair of jeans, and I found them. It’s one of the best fitting jeans I own. It sucks me in where I need it to, and hugs my curves in a flattering way. And the fact that they’re ethically made is a bonus.

Slim Ankle Pants: Next up are my black plaid pants. I thought I was done with “work pants” but these stole my heart when I saw them sitting perfectly folded on display. They have the comfort and breathability like a good pair of leggings, but the structure and hold like a good pair of jeans. It’s the best of both worlds and they’re currently on sale! Trust me, you want to add these to your wardrobe capsule!


Skinny Jean | Leopard Legging | Windowpane Pant

Mid-Rise Ankle Skinny Jean: I’ve always wanted a pair of Rag and Bone jeans, but that $350 price tag was just never in the cards. UNTIL my mom snuck over to Saks off Fifth and found these baddies for $250 less than they normally are…Melissa you doll. Maybe my favorite Christmas gift ever!! They have SUCH a good jean selection at this Saks outlet, so if you’re in the market go check out their insanely good brands and deals!!

Piper Legging: I’m still wearing workout gear 90% off the time, and I finally got these leggings I had been eyeing for soooo long. I thought they would be too much (and they are admittedly a lot) but they make me so happy and I find myself wearing them MULTIPLE times a week! If you’re wanting leggings that are not as funky leopard vibes, I also got these black leggings with pockets (to wear on my leopard legging off days) and am OBSESSED WITH THEM. Both the black leggings and the leopard leggings are the queens of never falling down which is the DREAM.

Black Windowpane Pant: I have a hilarious story about these pants. I had some that were literally identical to these and I wore them ALL THE TIME from freshman year of HIGH SCHOOL until they literally split in the crotch 4 years after I bought them. Well actually I sewed them together and then they ripped in the crotch again and I knew it was time for them to go. Then my mom (yes my mom strikes again with the pants!!) bought me these from Marine Layer for my birthday and they are IDENTICAL to my old pants. I’m very into pajama-but-make-it-real-pants fashion in quarantine especially, so these are the dream for 2021.


Left Jean | Right Jean

Sky High Straight Leg Jeans: I write this as I am wearing these jeans. In fact, most days I am wearing these jeans (I have two pairs now–they are that good) and I can wear them no matter what my day looks like. I can sit all day in them or walk around and they are still comfortable because they have the perfect amount of stretch but still hold their integrity and don’t get too baggy. I’d wear these on a plane if that tells you anything so if you love denim as much as I do and obsess about finding the perfect pair, THESE ARE IT.

The Perfect Vintage Jean in Ainsworth Wash: If I am not wearing the Sky High Jeans, I am wearing these. I consider these more “pants” (or jeggings??) than “jeans” just because they have a LOT of stretch so they are wildly comfortable (like, I can do SQUATS in these bad boys). They are also made for curves so you don’t have to deal with that annoying thing where they fit in the thighs and butt but not in the waist. 10/10!


Joggers | Studio Pants | Wide Leg Pants

Beautifully Soft Fleece Joggers: I bought these at the beginning of quarantine when I was still putting off laundry and they are SUCH a steal. So soft, so cozy, and this color is on sale for $13.99 right now. (I’m not the only one in the EHD orbit who loves these – y’all are not going to BELIEVE the person who links them up tomorrow!!!)

Dance Studio Pant III (Unlined): IF YOU LIVE IN A COLD CLIMATE, THESE ARE A GODSEND. I love these pants, you guys. 9 years in LA has turned me into an enormous baby about temperature but I spent a lot of time traveling to very cold places for ice skating competitions (pre-rona, of course! That picture is from a January trip to Grand Forks, ND – the coldest place in the continental US #blessed). These are a dream to layer over leggings for added warmth without a ton of bulk. It’s not just snow, though – love them for super early mornings (can imagine them being extra cozy while walking the dog pre-sunrise) and for keeping your muscles a little extra warm on the way home from a tough workout class (you know…when we can go to those again). I’ve also had the same pair for 4 years and they look brand new. 100/10! (PS. They come lined, too, if you wanna get REALLY toasty.)

Any of Madewell’s Emmett Pants: In case you can’t tell from our accidental matching outfits, these are perennial EHD office favorites. They are SO GOOD on any body type (I am for sure bigger than Veronica but we can both wear them!) and they’re re-released every season with new fabrics and color variants. They’re the perfect amount of high-waisted, super comfortable, and they work for folks of any age. (I wore them to my godmother’s Christmas Eve party in 2019 and they were a BIG HIT. Have a feeling I’ll be wearing this style for years to come :))

THERE YOU HAVE IT – the pants we actually have in our closet and turn to every day. No new bottoms were purchased for this post – just pieces we all own, love, and would buy again in a heartbeat. If you have any recommendations or all-time favorites that have stood the test of time for you, I’d love to hear about them. Have a great weekend, pals – see you back here tomorrow for a very fun link up! xx

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3 years ago

Re: Emily’s controversial jeans, I was firmly in the “keep” camp, because some pieces are thinking pieces. They’re not easy, they require some thought. (What’s the right top? Do I need to French-tuck it? Do I go with a boot or a mule? What’s the right hair moment for this look? Do I need a statement earring, or keep it simple?)

Just like a difficult space to design that requires addressing a million questions and trying a million combos, but once you figure it out it’s sooooo satisfying! I can’t wait to see them on their first real post-Covid outing, I hope you share it!!

3 years ago

My quarantine pants:
1. Joylab leggings from Target. Good quality and low price.
2. American Giant black ponte legging. Very good quality and high price point (but last for years).
3. Levis wedgie jeans. I love a thick pair of real jeans.
4. Outdoor Voices Cloudknit sweatpants. Softest pants ever.

I just bought a pair of Brooklyn lined jogger pants from Athleta and they seem like a keeper.

3 years ago

I just love that “no new bottoms were purchased for this post”!

3 years ago

I, too, am a Madewell Jean devotee. I find a 11” or higher rise keeps the muffin top at bay for me, but I’m wearing the 10” rise right now so there ya go! I’m curious if Rashida or anyone else who follows Everlane has opinions about the company after all of the stories came out over the summer about their mistreatment of BIPOC employees and other unethical practices in their stores. The company put out some wishy washy statements, and since then I’ve avoided buying from them, but I’d love to know if other people have info to share.

3 years ago
Reply to  Lashley

i also read that. as shekinah from @sheekzine calls them – everlame. they seem like a fast fashion co disguised as sustainable. the fear of ethical greenwashing is real which is why i’m lucky to be able to stick with secondhand. i found a stash of leggings on one of my last thrift outings which i mostly use as long underwear. been rocking/enjoying cropped, wide leg sweats i found at my mom’s house. always fun to feel fly even in sweats 🙂

3 years ago

I haven’t bought Gap jeans in probably a decade, but was inspired to try the Sky Highs after Ryann’s last post about them… and they’re good! And always on super-sale! A great rigid vintage denim dupe for those of us who can never find the perfect actual vintage Levi’s. Thanks!

3 years ago

Rashida!!! I’m obsessed with her. Love to see her in this roundup. I mean, obviously I love every other woman here too, just a nice little surprise!

Gotta give some of these a try, even though all I wear are joggers or sweatpants lately…nice to have hope for a need to wear real pants!

Love and hugs to all my favorite women! 😘

3 years ago

Always good to get a recommendation on these things! But I could hardly concentrate on the pants, since I was looking at the furry babies on the bed in Emily’s picture!!! THEY ARE SO ADORABLE

3 years ago
Reply to  Karyn

And Charlie with Dad’s slippers on on top if his shoes.
Too cute all round!

3 years ago

I loveeee girlfriend collective! Ethical and sustainable! Good buy! I’m waiting for them to ship to Canada again 😂

3 years ago

Love this! For me I’m living in Target PJ joggers and wide legged lined LL Bean sweatpants. (Check out LL Bean lined wide legged sweats, highly highly recommend them as they are nice and toasty but size down) They come in a TALL size which is so hard to find in warm pants (why?!)

Katherine Ogilvie
3 years ago

Genuine question and with no offence intended (which i know it can be read as…) but it feels like just toooo much content. I’m now just deleting from inbox daily from the over load. Are you interior design or best pants or what? Maybe it’s a USA (Martha Stewart thing i don’t get?) which are you? Fashion? Political commentator? Interior designer? Something for every single person breathing?

3 years ago

Diversity of offerings is an odd complaint. But people complaining about free content is (unfortunately) not atypical.

3 years ago

They are, this is, an evolving, movjng, fea5dt of whatever the goodness they wish to serve us for free.
Interestingly, I read every single post, because I’m often surprised what I find or learn from the most unexpected topics.
I guess my mind’s open.

3 years ago

The name of this site is stylebyemilyhenderson. Seems pretty straightforward to me…

3 years ago

Yay for Madewell Emmett Pants! I have 5 or 6 pairs in different colors and fabrics. They last forever and look good on my curvey 5,4 frame. I have wide calves and look like a sausage in skinny jeans.

Target actually has some good wide leg pants now too!

3 years ago

Since Christmas (the first I haven’t spend with all three of my kids), I have been wearing Lou and Gray’s Signature Softblend Sweatpants. They are the best, softest pants in the world. I have them in five colors that match some cute, also soft, sweaters. I was doing my best to wear pants with actual zippers and buttons but this Christmas just took it out of me and I haven’t left stretch and drawstring since.

3 years ago

Thanks for the recommendations! Emily – what size did you get in the sleeping bag puffer? It’ll be my first time ordering from Uniqlo. Thank you!

3 years ago

I love the Uniqlo pants and think that they’re perfectly fine for wearing out. I have the black and the dark denim. I wear the crop because I’m 5′ 4″ and they are just the right regular length for me. I originally got them to wear on an 11 hour flight that arrived in the morning. I could head out and look fairly put together. No one thinks that they’re leggings.

3 years ago

Heads-up: Emily’s trousers are not the Franck trousers, but rather the Sidney trousers:

3 years ago
Reply to  Kate

thanks! The link didn’t work and when I googled Franck trousers nothing like those jeans came up!

3 years ago

Ok I thought this post was fun and was annoyed by the post criticizing it! Just here with a shout out that Jess you always look so fashionable! You guys are motivating me to give Gap pants a chance! Finally, Caitlin, basically everything you write cracks me up. Those Sezane pants are super flattering. The end.

3 years ago

Brian in the background = hilarious

Also have the dogs stockpiled all the slippers and shoes on the bed haha

3 years ago
Reply to  Kelly

No, Charlie was wearing them ove his own shoes. Cute!

3 years ago

I thought Jess had a new dream apartment? Is that still happening – looks like her old apartment. I hope so!

3 years ago
Reply to  Alix

I wondered the exact same thing!!!!! I thought the photos must have been from awhile ago until she said it was Inauguration Day!

3 years ago

I have those same Marine Layer pants as Mallory, but in a different colorway, and they are AMAZING. Both super flattering, and super comfortable. They were my go-to pants for the office last summer (essential worker), because I felt put together but not constricted.