What To Wear With a Denim Jacket (Male and Female)

Who knew that denim jackets would be back in style?

In reality, it is not all that surprising. Denim jackets are a classic look, and their versatility in style means they are well-suited for making a wide array of fashion statements. 

Cut the sleeves off a denim jacket, and you look like you should be cruising down the road on a Harley with a pair of aviators; tie up the bottom half, and you will have a country-feminine look.

You’d be surprised at all the creative ways to express yourself with this fashion staple. Let’s look at ways that you can build a wardrobe around your new favorite fashion piece, the denim jacket. 

Can You Wear a Denim Jean Jacket With Jeans?

The “No denim on denim” rule doesn’t apply anymore. You can wear a denim jean jacket with jeans and it can look cool. Just be sure there’s a good amount of contrast between the two pieces.

Female Wardrobe Options: Skirts, Shirts, Patches & Pins

For the ladies out there, you can pair a denim jean jacket with skirts, shirts, and patches or pins. Try these looks out to add some feminine flare to a timeless denim jacket that never fails.

1. Skirts With Denim Jackets

There are a couple of versions of this, so let’s consider our options when pairing a denim jacket with skirts. You can pair a denim jacket with short skirts or long skirts. 

1. Short Skirts

First, we have a short skirt. Try contrasting it with a lighter-weight denim jacket that flows and adds volume. This combination has the added benefit of drawing the eye down toward the legs.

2. Long Skirts

Long flowing skirts also look great paired with denim jackets. A long flowing skirt is a skirt that falls anywhere from mid-calf to the floor. The fabric is light enough to lift when you move in it.

Long skirts are already more about being weird and fun than cute and girly. If you want to get silly, you might try pairing your long skirt and denim jacket with combat boots.

2. Shirts With Denim Jacket

You’ll want a cute shirt to your skirt and jacket combo to complete the look. Roll up the sleeves on your denim jacket, or leave it open, and wear a different-colored undershirt for contrast. 

1. Patterned Shirts

Shirts with horizontal stripes work well with denim jackets.

In fact, horizontal stripes can make you look thinner. This is because they seem to fill space more than vertical stripes do. Cute patterns and graphic tees can also be fun additions. 

Make sure there’s a difference in length between the shirt you select and your jacket (either shorter or longer) to add visual interest and break up the silhouette. 

2. Fitted Shirts

Another fun addition to this ensemble would be a long, semi-fitted undershirt made of a lightweight fabric that exceeds the length of your jacket.

Again, this style shirt will hug your body (bonus) and break up the silhouette.

3. Decorative Patches and Pins 

Anyone who has worn blue jeans knows just how sturdy good denim is, and a denim jacket is no exception. Denim jackets consist of durable, hardy fabric, a quality that makes denim an ideal choice for decorative patches and pins.

Unlike less sturdy fabrics, denim holds its shape even when you put pins through it, and denim does not warp under the stress of heating up with an iron. 

You can advertise your politics, use it as a canvas for your artistic creativity, or even get silly and cover your jacket in iron-ons from pop culture. There aren’t any rules here.

Male Wardrobe Options: Jeans, Leather, and Distress

Achieving a masculine, stylish look with a denim jacket can be accomplished in several ways. For men, you can pair a denim jean jacket with jeans, leather, or distressed patterns.

Denim Jeans

Contrary to popular belief, wearing jeans with a denim jacket is great because your jeans can closely match or be a style and color that is opposite and still look fashionable. 

1. Monochrome Jeans

You can go subtle and wear jeans in the exact color or a color that is a tiny bit off from that of the jacket to add contrast, creating a simple, clean put-together look.

2. Bright Colored Jeans and Leather

High contrast denim jeans create the opposite aesthetic. Wear your denim jacket with jeans of a completely different color or a material like leather or pleather.

3. Black Jeans

Black denim jeans are especially striking. Pair them with a plain white tee shirt or a graphic tee shirt underneath your denim jacket to create a look that is both edgy and understated.

If you do black-on-black denim wrong, you risk looking kind of boring.

While monochrome looks have their place, you need to be able to pull this look off without appearing washed out from the dark-colored fabric.

If you attempt to pull this look off, pairing your black-on-black denim with a button-down or collared flannel shirt will serve as a simple way to make yourself look more rugged.

4. Distressed Jeans

Distressing your jeans is a tried and true way to achieve a stylish look with your denim jacket.

For those who don’t know, distressing is just a term for destroying the fabric on sections of your jeans to give them a damaged appearance. 

You can purchase distressed style jeans or distress them yourself for a customized look. Distressing your jeans and jacket both to look equally ragged is a quick way to tie them together while still making yourself look rough around the edges. 

It’s easy to go too far though, so less is more here. You don’t want to destroy the garments completely or look like a scene kid from the 2000s, you just want a little battle damage.

And for anyone who wants to look like they’d be down for a fight in a parking lot, you can also take the sleeves off your jacket entirely.  Just make sure to leave the shoulder seams intact as a barrier against further structural damage to the jacket if you do take a pair of scissors to it. 

To complete the anarchic look, wear your biggest, most rugged pair of boots and accessorize thoroughly. A pair of dark-colored Chelsea boots like Blundstones should do the trick.

A Classic Look

Whether you’re a man or a woman, you now know what to wear with a denim jean jacket. Style your denim jacket to help you make a statement about who you are and what you stand for.

While your denim jacket’s primary function is to provide warmth, it also can become an excellent canvas to showcase your personal style.  To bring out the best in your denim jacket look, decide what message you want to send about yourself to the world, and then dress accordingly.

The options for creating a fashionable look with your denim jacket are endless. Take a few of these style tips to get you started on creating a wardrobe you will love to wear. 

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