Our ultimate guide to vintage denim

Besma Whayeb ·
Kelly Harrington Vintage Denim

Denim never goes out of fashion. It's probably why vintage denim is so popular – we've been wearing it for years and it’s a consistent staple in our wardrobes. We’re clearly not the only ones, because did you know that there are more pairs of jeans on Earth than people?

You can dress vintage denim right up or right down – you just have to know how! In our ultimate guide to vintage denim, we go through our favourite vintage denim brands, influencers that are sure to give you some fabulous denim-spriration, and some styling tips and tricks.

We've got a huge collection of pre-loved and vintage denim from your favourite influencers at Reliked. Read on for your ultimate guide to vintage denim…

Top vintage denim brands

When it comes to vintage denim, it’s always a good idea to choose brands that are tried, tested, and loved by many. That way you can be sure you’re getting a piece that will last you well. Try looking for well-loved  labels such as:

  1. Calvin Klein
  2. D&G
  3. Diesel
  4. Lee
  5. Levi's
  6. G-Star
  7. Guess
  8. Wrangler

These are all well-known jeans retailers and fashion brands in their own right. For second-hand pieces, these labels also guarantee high quality and a great fit.

How to find your perfect size & fit for vintage jeans

If you're looking to shop for vintage  jeans, it's important to know your size and shape ahead of buying anything. Jeans use slightly different sizing to regular mens and womens sizes, taking into account the waist and leg measurements instead.

To find your perfect vintage jeans fit:

  1. Get a fabric measuring tape
  2. Measure around your belly-button in inches - this especially useful for high-waisted jeans. This will give you the 'W' or waist measurement, for example, W27.
  3. Measure the inside of your leg, from where the seam of your trousers is to your ankle. This will give you the 'L' or leg measurement, for example, W30.

In terms of fit, think about the style of vintage jeans you're looking for. For example, high-waisted jeans sit higher up than hipsters, and skinny jeans are a lot more form-fitting than straight. For inspiration, take a look at our selection of influencers and find the ones with a similar body shape to your own, and what type of denim they wear. Sorted!


Top denim style influencer: Kelly Harrington

Before we take you through our denim lookbook, we wanted to share with you our favourite denim-loving VIB… Kelly Harrington!




Kelly is a lover of all things denim, rarely ever being seen leaving the house without wearing it. As well as being a designer, trend forecaster, vintage archivist and consultant, she shares her gorgeous denim fashion content with us over on her Instagram, @kellouhar. We're delighted to sell her pre-loved denim and other fashion pieces here on Reliked - head to Kelly Harrington's page and get shopping!

How to style vintage denim: five ways

If you’re finally embracing your love for vintage denim and need some outfit inspiration, or need some new ways to style your favourite go-to pieces, we’ve brought together our favourite five ways to style vintage denim.

Find influencer-approved ways to style vintage denim…

1. Classic blue denim & white t-shirt

Denim jeans and a white tee is a classic look – the 80's Levi's laundrette advert sealed the deal on that one. This is a perfect style for any gender, any age, and any shape or size, and Henry Wade shows us how it's done and brings a bit of twin magic to the table.

Shop vintage denim jeans




2. White denim

Laura Blair shows us how to pull off white jeans effortlessly. This summer staple looks great with a t-shirt or pullover, and to keep things extra clean, pair with light, muted tones.

Shop for vintage white denim pieces




3. Denim jacket, red lips

Charlotte de Carle looks good in almost anything (or nothing at all!) and the same can be said here for the classic denim jacket and bright red lipstick pairing.

Shop for vintage denim jackets




4. Denim jumpsuit

If you're the daring kind, like The Fashion Bug Blog's Laura Wills is, a denim jumpsuit is the perfect one-piece to show your love of this hardly blue fabric. Style up with luxury accessories, or dress down with a scrunchie and sliders. Up to you!

Shop The Fashion Bug's denim jumpsuit




5. Double denim

We couldn't create a denim lookbook without mentioning double denim! This trend is another classic that's been styled and restyled for the last 50 years, but Emma Louise Connolly's take on it is a fresh look: denim cycling shorts and those Instagram-worthy triangle shades!

Shop all pre-loved denim on Reliked




How to make denim look vintage

At Reliked, we know how important it is to upcycle your perfectly good pieces that you don’t wear enough into stylish pieces that you’ll wear time and time again. So, if you have some denim jeans or a jacket that you want to give an extra edge to, why not make it look vintage?

The easiest way to make denim look vintage is to distress the denim on the piece you want to make look vintage. You can distress denim through various methods, including: 

  • Fading the denim with bleach – always be incredibly careful doing this!
  • Make small and larger holes in the denim.
  • Fray the edges of the denim on pockets and cuffs. 
You can find influencer-approved vintage denim looks at Reliked to add to your wardrobe.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

Subscribe to our newsletter