Madewell Curvy Jeans Review: Why They’re My Favorite

Madewell Curvy Jeans Review
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Madewell Curvy Jeans Review

I have been on a quest to find the best curvy jeans for literally years.

If you’ve been reading for awhile, you’ll recall several posts on this subject: here, here, and here, to name a few.

But the quest has become more urgent over recent months. That’s because I finally started to make peace with the fact that my body has changed for good, and that it’s ok to buy clothes that fit.

This realization has not come without stress. I have allowed a lot of negative self-talk, and lamented the loss of certain articles of clothing that no longer fit comfortably. I also had to figure out how to budget for new clothes at a financially tenuous moment.

Beyond our society’s relentless messaging around bodies and weight gain, it is really expensive to replace clothing items! Especially when you’re hoping to buy something more sustainable and higher quality.

I tried to go for the cheaper options earlier on in the year. But many of those items found their way to the “donate” pile very quickly. So I finally bit the bullet and invested in a couple pairs of Madewell Jeans from their Curvy range.

And honestly, I wish I had done so sooner…

Madewell Curvy Jeans Review

Wearing: Madewell Top, Madewell Jeans, Blooh Earrings (c/o), Vintage Loafers

How to Get Discounted Madewell Jeans

The first thing I should say is there are a few ways to get Madewell denim cheaper than their normal, $100+ retail price.

If you’re a student, teacher, first responder, or military, you can get 15% off many items at Madewell and every day. And that discount is often stackable with seasonal sales.

Madewell also lists all active promotions they’re running. Scroll down to the bottom of the home page and click on Promo Codes & Discounts ( <- or click the hyperlink). You can save a lot of money by checking this page.

I was able to get both of my Madewell Curvy Jeans for around $50, which is more than 60% off their original retail price. I was willing to purchase designs that were last-season in order to save money. But that’s not necessarily the best choice: use your best judgement to figure out what will work best for you.

Madewell Curvy Jeans Review

Madewell’s Curvy Jeans come in limited styles, but they’re worth it. I would rather have a less trendy style that fits me than a trendy one that makes me feel like crap.

You can tell that Madewell did a LOT of fit-testing to get these right. From the higher rise to the waist-to-hip ratio to the fabric, they don’t sag, pull, or fit weirdly at the crotch and butt. And they don’t make your stomach hurt when you sit down, because there’s enough room in the seat!

They’re also sized in a sensible way. You can expect to purchase the same size in Curvy that you would in their standard sizing (which, for me and for many, is one size down from your normal size – I’m a 29 in Madewell and a 30 in other brands). They also carry some Plus Sizes in Curvy fit.

You can use Madewell’s fit finder to ensure the right fit. Their search tools are also helpful in narrowing down styles that are in stock in your size.

Madewell’s denim fabrics are beloved, and now I can see why. They have the right amount of stretch without getting loose. I can wear these jeans a dozen times without worrying that they’re going to look saggy or grungy. Then, I just wash and hang (or tumble) dry without issue.

Fair Trade Certified Factory

Madewell makes a lot of their denim in a fair trade certified factory.

According to the website, 56% of Madewell’s denim is currently made in a fair trade factory. Their goal is to produce 90% of denim according to fair trade standards by 2025.

Both of the curvy jeans I purchased were made in a fair trade certified factory.


Out of all the Curvy fit jeans I’ve tried (including from AE, Everlane, LOFT, Kohl’s, and Target), Madewell jeans are the clear winner.

Check for seasonal discounts to save some money. And know that the quality alone makes these worth the price.

Leah Wise

Leah Wise is the founder of StyleWise Blog. She has been writing, speaking, and consulting on sustainable fashion, the fair trade and secondhand supply chain, and digital marketing for over ten years. An Episcopal priest, Leah holds a B.A. in Religion from Florida State University and an M.Div. from Yale Divinity School. When not working, you can find her looking for treasures at the thrift store.

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  1. I have a small waist but big thighs. I bought some Madewell perfect vintage jeans and positively lived in them for like a month and then they seemed to just loose their hold and sag in the crotch and butt. I’m pretty disappointed. I hope yours hold up better. My new faves are the Ribcages from Levis and the vintage straights from Target’s Universal Thread line. The lady at the Levis store said I should just tailor the waist on my jeans because my body type is prone to gaps no matter the jean brand. Time to crack out the sewing machine!

    1. Thanks for your insight! That’s good to know. I think I bought and returned the perfect vintage jeans a few years ago. I think they have a looser weave than the pairs I have now, so I hope that these hold up ok. I should try your recommendations…and also admit that I need to think about tailoring things.

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