Tips on How to Wear a Jean Jacket with Any Outfit

Denim is a staple in most closets but it’s not always easy to know how to wear a jean jacket. Here are our favorite examples of trendy jean jacket outfits.

It can be frustrating to keep up with the ever-changing trends of fashion—every season brings with it a new color, style and silhouette. Sometimes it can make you feel like you have to throw out everything in your closet that's older than a season or more. So isn’t it nice when you come across an item in that same closet that truly stands the test of time? Something that not only works season after season, but year after year? Behold the denim jacket. Jean jackets are true wardrobe staple and should be in every woman’s closet, no matter her size or shape. Denim jackets are great for breezy summer nights or as a chic layer under a winter coat. They look cool with an oversized scarf in the fall, and are the perfect outerwear of choice for spring. If the one in your closet hasn’t seen the light of day in a while—maybe you forgot how versatile it really is, or maybe it got buried under all the other trends in there—now’s the time to dust it off and give it another life. In this article we’ll show you 36 ways to wear your jean jacket, plus we’ll break down all the different types out there (hint: blue denim is only the beginning!).

How to Wear a Jean Jacket

If you search for denim jackets on the Internet you’ll quickly see how many different versions are out there. Do you like a dark wash in a classic cut? Check. White denim with a flared waist? Check. A vintage style with an oversized fit? Yup, that’s out there, too. It can get a little overwhelming, so we broke down all the categories (and even included some how-to-wear-them tips) to help you figure out which one is the right one for you.

Blue Jean Jacket

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The most basic of them all, the blue jean jacket is every woman’s best friend. It’s versatility is unmatched—available in countless washes, at every price point, and in all sizes, so there’s no reason every woman shouldn’t own one.

Balance out the volume of a full skirt with a fitted denim jacket like blogger Color Me Courtney.

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Toss a jean jacket over a body-con maxi dress (and baby bump!) like blogger Collectively Candice.

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A blue jean jacket grounds an otherwise over-the-top color palette, as seen here on Georgette from the blog Grown and Curvy Woman.

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A blue denim jacket perfectly offsets a black, white and red outfit—and looks great with a baby bump!

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Blogger Kendi Everyday proves that a denim jacket with a popped collar and rolled-up sleeves makes even joggers and sneakers look polished.

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A blue jean jacket and a red sweater are a match made in heaven—bonus points if you add in another pop of color, like blogger Geri Hirsch did here.

White Denim Jacket

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If blue denim is not your thing, or if you already one of those and want to grow your jean jacket collection, try a white version. It’s clean and crisp, and will elevate any outfit.

Try using it as part of a color-blocking strategy like blogger Sydne Summer from Sydne Style.

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If bright white is too much for you, try a printed version as seen on Kate Ogata of The Fancy Pants Report—you may not be able to wear it to the office but you’ll live in it every weekend.

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White denim is slightly more polished than blue, so it plays nicely with a silky blouse and black pants, like blogger Lady in Violet is wearing here.

Black Denim Jacket

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The other end of the denim jacket spectrum is, of course, the black jean jacket. Sure, it lends a downtown-cool vibe to any outfit—but it can also serve as a versatile wear-anywhere layer.

Layer it over a slouchy hoodie to turn leggings and sweats into a real outfit.

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A black denim jacket is the perfect go-with for edgy black accessories.

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A light-wash black jean jacket makes a white tee really pop.

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Try a style in a vintage wash to add texture and interest to an otherwise drab outfit.

Oversized Denim Jacket

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Even though jean jackets transcend seasonal trends, there are more fashion-forward versions out there—if you’re in the mood to experiment, try an oversized style.

A longer silhouette, like this one on blogger Patty’s Kloset, is super-flattering over a body-con knee-length dress.

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A borrowed-from-the-boys slouchy silhouette perfectly offsets the girly vibe of a pleated skirt.

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An oversized denim jacket with a vintage vibe can bring your white jeans into fall.

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A hip-length silhouette balances the sexiness of cage heels and skin-tight jeans.

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An oversized denim jacket can be a fun way to play with proportion—try wearing one with wide-leg pants and platform heels like blogger Simply Audree Kate.

Distressed Denim Jacket

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If a plain denim jacket doesn’t feel very “you,” maybe a distressed version, like the ones below, would be more your speed.

A ripped-all-over jacket dresses down a floor-length pleated skirt, like on blogger Sweenee Style.

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Distressed details (and a cool concert tee) help to perfectly balance out an ultra-feminine skirt.

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You can never go wrong with a distressed jean jacket and black jeans.

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A distressed, oversized denim jacket is a double whammy, but works well to downplay super-sexy stiletto boots.

Cropped Denim Jacket

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If you have a petite frame, or maybe oversized silhouettes simple aren't your think, try a cropped denim jacket.

Show off your curves with a shrunken silhouette, like blogger Amy Michelle from Style and Sequins did here.

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A cropped style ensures horizontal stripes don’t overwhelm a petite frame.

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Accentuate long legs with a cropped denim jacket that hits at your natural waist.

Sleeveless Jean Jacket

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A sleeveless jean jacket, or a denim vest, can be a really fun layering piece to add to your wardrobe. It’s also the perfect DIY solution for a jacket whose sleeves have gotten too short.

Try a denim vest over a jumpsuit, like blogger Brooke from KB Styled.

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A sleeveless denim jacket with a longer silhouette plays nice with the streamlined cut of a mod mini dress, in this photo from Masha Sedgwick.