Why Are Jeans So Expensive?

We can’t think of anything more versatile than jeans. You can rock the same pair at a basketball game, casual Fridays at the office, while running errands, or even during a night out.

Babies, soccer moms, and even presidents wear jeans. They’re a staple for all. Why are some jeans so expensive though?

There are no stupid questions when it comes to jeans. At first glance, most of us aren’t able to immediately tell the difference between cheap jeans and expensive ones.

No worries. We’ll explore the finer details together.

Not All Jeans Are Created Equal

As with the case of most items, there are affordable alternatives to high-end versions. Jeans are no exception. Why is there a huge disparity between cheap jeans and expensive jeans?

Why Are Jeans So Expensive?

For starters, there’s the construction. Selvage or self-edge is the edge on a woven fabric that keeps it intact. Jeans with a selvage seam are more expensive because they require double the amount of fabric.

You may have to fork out the big bucks for the stitching too. Your expensive jeans would have more stitches per running inch along the length of the material. The more stitches per inch, the more secure the edges will be.

Check the fly for a quick inspection. Are you seeing a zipper or buttons? Cheaper jeans come with zippers because buttons can be quite pricey.

Zippers can easily malfunction whereas buttons are built into the fabric, thus making your fly more durable and reliable. Buttons also produce a more polished look.

Another tell-tale sign is the type of whiskers. See those faded lines across your pants? Those are whiskers.

They’re the creases that form when you sit. The whiskers on your expensive jeans are done by people so they’ll be uneven, while your cheaper pair has even whiskers that are designed on a computer and burned off by lasers.

It’s Worth The Price

What makes some jeans expensive? Is the material? Expensive jeans look and feel luxurious. They have a higher denim composition than the cheaper ones.

The denim used is of high-quality cotton with 2% spandex, while the more affordable jeans will often use a synthetic blend of denim, polyester, elastic, and spandex.

What about the fit? Top designers ensure that their jeans are form-fitting and very flattering to your body. They will last forever and keep their shape, even when stretched. On the flip side, cheaper jeans are created as generic fits and will sag fast.

We adore jeans because there’s a pair within everyone’s budget. Prices range from $20 to $200 or more.

How much does it cost to make jeans? Interestingly, about $50 for high quality. The price tags are however justified by quality craftsmanship and ethical manufacturing. American factory workers earn up to $12 per hour while their counterparts overseas earn $1.

You may have to fork out the big bucks for the stitching too. Your expensive jeans would have more stitches per running inch along the length of the material. The more stitches per inch, the more secure the edges will be.

Distressed jeans aren’t cheap either. Why? Because they require extra labor, materials, techniques, and chemicals to keep the rips and tears from fraying. This is why your rips will not come undone no matter how many times you wear your jeans.

Another detail to consider is the wash. Your expensive jeans will hold on to the color for years and look just as good as the first day you bought them.

5 Most Expensive Jeans Brands

While the average cost of jeans is $34, some of us don’t mind spending a whole lot more. If you thought a $200 pair of jeans was a splurge, wait until you see our list below:

1. Earnest Sewn Custom Fit

Your wish for unique jeans is their command. After all, you will spend up to $1000 on a pair from them. Earnest Sewn Custom Fit caters to customers who like to have their jeans custom-made with gold chains or precious gemstones embedded into them, or anything else they desire.

2. Dolce & Gabbana

Customers will pay up to $1200 for the promise of intricate detailing and artistry. Dolce & Gabbana delivers just that.

Their jeans are a crowd-pleaser because they’re made from distressed faded fabrics for denim featuring embroidered butterfly themes, awesome cuts, and their beautifully adorned gold logo.

3. Robert Cavalli

Also, at $1200 a pop are Roberto Cavalli jeans which are a favorite among the elite and celebrities. You will stand out in jeans that fit you like a glove and embellished with the finest jewels.

4. Gucci Jeans

This brand needs no introduction as it’s a leader in high fashion and luxury. Their impressive variety of jeans with styles that range from urban to elegant cost up to $3100.

They’re specially made for those who like to make a statement.

5. APO Jeans

Rounding off the list is a brand that goes the extra mile for fashion. APO prides themselves on using precious metals and gems to adorn their jeans.

$4000 can get you jeans that have silk pockets with gold, silver, or platinum rivets, along with a diamond for a button.

Most Expensive Brand on Record

Do you want to turn heads? Or do you want jaws to drop? Then you can’t go wrong with Escada Couture Swarovski Crystal Jeans.

These expensive pants which are commercially available, have made it to the Guinness World Book of Records for being priced at $10,000!

Final Verdict

When it comes to jeans, you get what you pay for. The quality of the fabric, buttons, stitching, wash, cut, manufacturing, and fit all determine the final cost.

Even though expensive jeans will serve you better in the long run, they may not be within everyone’s price range. No worries. Jeans are a national treasure and are here to stay.

We suggest purchasing jeans that are a “happy medium” until you can afford a pair that feels like they were made specifically for you.

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Written by: Jessica D. Walker

American fashion designer and businesswoman Jessica D. Walker was born in New York and grew up in Los Angeles. Her interest in designing fashion was created by seeing the beautiful dresses made by her mother when she was young. Learn More

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