Can You Wear Colored Jeans After 40?

Hi Deborah!

I  love your website and want to know if colored jeans are appropriate for a 50-something woman.

colored jeans Michelle Obama
Colored Jeans for women over 40 – Modern and appropriate!

Bright, skinny jeans seem hard to wear unless you’re a size 2.  I love color, but I’m not sure if colored jeans scream I’m desperately clinging to youth or if they look chic and current. Can I wear colored jeans, and how do I pull off this look? Thanks! Trish ………..

Hi Trish,

If you want to wear colored jeans, go for them! Many women our age assume they’re just for young, skinny models when they can look great on women 40+. Colored jeans add a touch of fun to your wardrobe and make you look sporty, relaxed, and modern.

To wear colored jeans well, you need to: 1) find a pair that suits your body type, 2) know how to style them 3) own the look! Let’s dive in.


colored jeans


Do you worry that colored jeans are so bright they’ll make you look heavy? The colored jeans we see in magazines don’t always match reality.  Red-colored jeans are like a stop sign, drawing attention to your bottom half, even if you are slim.  So, how can you wear them and feel good? Try these tricks to look slim and feel confident in colored jeans.




1. Wear A Darker Shade

Darker colors have become famous for a good reason. Like oxblood (brown-red), a darker red is more slimming than bright cherry red, making colored jeans much easier to wear.

2. Try a Straight leg or Bootcut

Skinny jeans are tougher if you carry weight on your hips and thighs.  In this case, try wearing straight-leg or skinny-leg colored jeans. The slight flare leg helps balance out your hips and thighs.


3. Buy Colored Jeans with built-in Stretch

Remember that a little stretch goes a long way toward making your figure look fab.

4. Control the Amount of Color Shown

Wear a tunic, shawl, or long top that ends below the fullest part of your body, so you see less of the jeans. Don’t tuck in, as it will emphasize your bottom half.

5. Go Monochromatic

If you wear a top in the same color or similar color as your jeans, you create a long, continuous slimming brushstroke of color.

How to Wear Colored Jeans, so they are in Sync with Your Style Personality.



1. Neutrals to Look Sophisticated

Keep it classy by toning things down. Add a neutral top or jacket in ivory, white, black, tan, black, gray, or navy to colored jeans.

Colored Jeans - Mint

2. Mix Colors for a Fun Look

If you prefer a more playful look, wear a print top that includes the color of the jeans. Or, if you want to go even bolder, color block your outfit with a solid-colored top in a contrasting shade. For example, a yellow top with red jeans.  Note: you need the confidence to color block, or you will look like a clown. Please don’t force it. Here are some examples of colored jeans and colored tops styled well.

Here are some examples of colored jeans and colored tops styled well.

Ines-de-la-Fressange_colored jeans

3. Try a Boyfriend Jacket for a Cool Look

Find a boyfriend jacket with turned-up sleeves in a neutral color, and pair it with colored jeans + a white/cream top for an elegant look.

red skinny jeans with black leather jacket

4. Animal Prints for a Hint of Sexy

A touch of leopard print thrown into a black and red mix is edgy and sexy.

Acne red jeans

5. Stripes for a Sporty Look

Strips with colored jeans look modern and sporty. If the horizontal stripes make you look too full, add a cute jacket that nips in at the waist.


6. A Chambray Shirt for a Laid-Back Look

A soft chambray shirt + red jeans are a fashionable look.

7.  Showstopping Accessories for a Dramatic Look

Pair colored jeans with a neutral top and big, dazzling statement jewelry for a head-turning outfit.

Please watch how 40+ Instagrammers wear their colored jeans and watch my video on wearing colored denim jeans for women.


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34 thoughts on “Can You Wear Colored Jeans After 40?

  1. I like the idea of a neutral (or, in my case, black) jacket or top with bright jeans. My fav look is the orange ones with the striped top and neutral jacket.

  2. Great post! I agree about the confidence factor.

    I’m 42, and I recently got a pair of Wyatt turquoise skinny jeans via Belle & Clive (Bluefly’s private sale site). At first, I had the confidence to wear them–but now, when I wear them, they make me feel confident! Funny how that works sometimes :)

  3. I might be persuaded to wear red jeans. My younger sister, also 40-something, recently wore paint splatter jeans. I felt they were something she saved from when we were teenagers. LOL.

  4. I love this! Colored jeans aren’t just for teenie boppers! These women look great in colored jeans!

    1. Hi Terri, Well, not all colors look good on all of us…some look great in orange, others horrific, so don’t worry if you don’t like it! However, you just might too…

  5. What a fabulous article! An ad to google ‘colored jeans after 40?’ and your super fantastic article popped up. It is written clearly and honestly, and I am now inspired to go to the mall and try on several different styles and colors to see what looks best. Thank you for your article:-)

  6. Hi Deb,
    Thanks so much for posting this article. I have purchased a pair of bright reddish skinny jeans, and I have yet to wear them because I have been waffling about how to wear them and with what shoes. The photos in your post have inspired me, and I’ll bust them out this weekend!

  7. Check out the “broken in chinos” that Gap just got in stock. (check out the website where they have pictures of the various colors) They come in several spring colors, like nautical blue, mango, pale pink, etc., none of them too bright or gariflashyThe fit is excellent, and they can be rolled up into crop pants.

  8. Colored jeans look great if you have great legs and are not pear-shaped. I am slim, pear-shaped, with awful legs, and I can never wear colored pants even though I am definitely under 40. However, it is nice to see that there are options for other ladies that will add some pop to their outfits. I only have one pair of red, slightly flared track pants that are nice that I wear occasionally, but as soon as I hit 40, I have to give them away.

  9. I’m funny. I think skirts and pants should be in solid, neutral colors like brown, navy, black and white or olive green for khaki. Color jeans seem to garnish. This has nothing to do with me being over 40; I have always felt this way. That said, they look fabulous on the first lady. Orange and black? It makes me think of Halloween.

  10. Great article and I’m inspired now to try these out, having seen all the great combinations and ideas! Loving this website, girls; at last, some funky cool looks for women still in good shape over 50!

  11. I had a lunch and movie date today. I wore red jeans, a black & white striped shirt, black leather jacket with black flats. I received many smiles and compliments. I’m a size 2, and I’ll be 60 in July.

  12. I was excited to hear some bootcut red jeans were out there, as I’ve been looking for a pair for a few years. I took a look at Zappo’s site… LOL $169! I can buy some carbon fiber for my Ducati at that price. Not too sure I care enough about fashion to stay on this mailing list after that! Thanks anyway.

  13. They look good on the ladies in these photos. But I am still going to give them a pass. This is when “never wear something the second time it comes around” makes sense to me. Wore red jeans and turquoise jeans for the first time. Still have horrible pictures to prove it. And I weighed 15 lbs less then than I do now.

  14. I’m 51, 5’10” tall, and I wear a size 14, but I wore my skinny red NYDJ proudly with a Tucker/flowy blouse in a darker color print in Chicago last weekend, and I think I looked GREAT! (oh, and leopard print Tory Burch flats–a perfect touch of my style).

  15. Thanks so much for this post. I’ve been wondering about wearing colored jeans as a woman well after 40. I do have a straight figure and skinny thighs, and I love love love skinny jeans — just got a pair of jeggings and felt like I finally found something that fits in the thigh! So this made me think that maybe the color is a possibility. I want to find something slightly less bright than red — maybe orange or a dark peach (NOT pastel).

  16. I love this post. You have provided so many ideas on how to wear colored jeans. I am 51 and will be purchasing a pair this spring for sure. Now I know what to do with them.

  17. I just purchased a pair yesterday. Now I have some great ideas on different ways to wear them. Thank you for keeping us up to date :)

  18. This is a great help for many women! I love the colored jeans. Also, I own red skinny cords and love them! I am 42 and believe the trends can fit into any age. I will wear my colored jeans with a sweater jacket or pretty blouse! Thanks and I love coming here!!!!!

  19. Thank you so much for answering my question! You did so much more than that …. you gave us the tools and info to decide if
    colored jeans are a good option, no matter our size/age.

    I appreciate your response. And I thank you for all the inspiration!

    1. I am 58, 5’7″, slim and shapely. I also am trendy and don’t look my age. I like colored jeans; I have a bright blue pair, a subtle shade of red with black in them, and I plan to get turquoise. So far, I have paired the jeans with a plain black top, which looks really good.

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