So long, muffin top! Celebrity stylist MARK HEYES reveals his top tips to avoid denim disasters
Women have an average of 10 pairs of jeans in their wardrobe – but only wear twoSeven out of 10 women say they NEVER wear jeans because they struggle to find the right pairShoppers try on an average five pairs of jeans before they find one they likeThis Morning's celebrity stylist Mark Heyes says there's a pair for everyone out there



14:09 GMT, 21 September 2012

Holy grail Stylist Mark Heyes says finding the perfect pair of jeans needn't be a nightmare

Holy grail Stylist Mark Heyes says finding the perfect pair of jeans needn't be a nightmare

They are the uniform of the world, the go-to item in the wardrobes of people from all walks of life.

But despite their extraordinary popularity, many of us find buying jeans a hellish experience.

Recent research revealed that women have an average of 10 pairs of jeans in their wardrobes – but they wear only two of them.

And seven out of 10 women admit they never wear jeans at all, so impossible do they find it to get a pair of jeans they like.

It's fashion's quixotic quest: we expect so much from our jeans. We
want them to lift and shape a flat bottom, slim a thigh and lengthen a
leg – all the while ridding us of our dreaded muffin top and wobbly tummy… miracles that surely only a combination of freakishly good genes and
a talented surgeon could achieve.

How could a simple item of clothing hope to meet our demands

Still, that doesn't prevent us from
trying to find that denim Holy Grail – and it is partly the level of our
expectations that sees us storming out of changing rooms leaving behind
a tangled mess of discarded denim in our wake.

On average, women try on five pairs of jeans before they find a pair they like. But it doesn't have to be this way.

Celebrity stylist Mark Heyes says
there really is a pair of jeans out there for everyone – it's just a
matter of finding the right ones.

'I think it's interesting – so many women think they have to spend a fortune on designer jeans – but they really don't.

The High Street is a great place to shop for them. Almost all the High Street jeans have a small amount of Lycra content to give them stretch, which makes a huge difference.'

'It might not be as good quality as the top designer brands so they might not last you as long, but they are so inexpensive you can replace them.

'I always say if you find a pair you love, go out and buy three pairs – you'll have them for a good wee while.'

Mark recommends Moto in Topshop, River Island and Oasis as the High Street places to shop for jeans.

'I 'fess up,' he says. 'I used to
love my Dior Homme jeans, and I'd buy them at 180 a time. But all of a
sudden the price went up to 400 – I kid you not.


Muffin top

Builder's bottom

'Sausage skin' look from too-tight jeans

Gaping waistband

Ankle swingers on tall women

'I couldn't spend that on a pair of jeans. I started going to the
high street, and I found that Gap has a really great range of jeans, and
the staff are trained to an extremeley good level if you explain to
them what you want.'

Beware the style rut though, explains Mark. 'It's easy to get stuck in a rut with a pair of denims,' he says.

'I said on This Morning today that for girls with larger hips, bootcut are the most
flattering – but if I'd have had more time to explain, I'd have said
that women shouldn't just stick to bootcut without trying other styles.

'The bootcut can be a little ageing, a
bit Noughties – like you're stuck in that Stella McCartney era of
wearing bootcut jeans and a sparkly top.

'Be cautions. The word 'skinny' scares people, but in reality, whatever your size, skinny or straight leg jeans tend to look so much better.

'I will often put a size 18 or 20 woman in pair of jeans but treat them like leggings and put a top or tailoring over the top.

One of the more common issues women face is the gaping waistband, Mark says.

'So many girls say to me that the
gape at the back is infuriating. I've found the curvier models – size 16
plus and a lot of black girls I style need a certain size to fit their
bottoms, but are left with a gaping waistband.

'River Island seem have been able to cut their some of their jeans so they don't have the gape at the back.'

High-waisted jeans are best left to models in photoshoots, says Mark

Pockets on the derriere make the bottom look smaller, he adds

Top tips: High-waisted jeans are best left to models in photoshoots or those under 18, says Mark – choose high rise instead to help conceal a tummy. RIGHT: Pockets on the derriere make the bottom look smaller, as demonstrated by the lovely Joan Collins in 1981

'If you are conscious of your tummy, a
high-rise – not high-waisted (you don't want to look like Kath and Kim)
will offer a bit of security.

'You want the waistband to sit just below the belly button to hold in that little bit of tummy without looking old fashioned.'

It's important not to mistake
high-rise for high-waisted jeans. The 70s look that is so successful
in campaign images is best left to the very youthful, he says.

'If you are conscious of your tummy, a
high-rise – not high-waisted (you don't want to look like Kath and Kim)
will offer a bit of security.

'Even though high-waisted denims are
all over Miss Selfridge, for instance, they are incredibly hard to wear.
To me, they only really work in photoshoots – they look a bit daft in
real life.

'They create a tummy where there isn't one and make the bottom look bigger than it is.'

When it comes to strong flash-in-the-pan trends, Mark says go for it.

'Patterned denim – like those leopard
print Current/Elliot jeans we are seeing everywhere are good fun. If
you love your jeans, go with it – fashion's about having fun and they'll
be a great staple for your autumn/winter wardrobe.

'But from an investment point of
view, you might not get the most out of them if you spend a fortune. My
rule is, if it's very trend led, go on the High Street – it's brilliant.

When it comes to shapes that are here to stay, Mark is all about the skinny.

'I always talk about the three season
rule – if something lasts for three seasons or more, it becomes a
wardrobe basic, and the skinny jeans silhouette has been in fashion

'That is what happened with jumpsuits –
they started off on the catwalk, as proper high fashion, then after a
couple of seasons Wallis doing them and they're here to stay.


Darker denims will give a slimmer silhouette

Pockets on derriere make the bottom seem smaller

Avoid overhang – choose a higher waistband to smooth our lumps and bumps

Curvy girls: Try bootcut for balance – but don't get stuck in a Noughties style rut – do try skinnies too, they can often be more flattering

Buy jeans in proportion to waist and hips to prevent gaping at the waistband