In Partnership With
VIDEO: Man Repeller Puts Madewell Jeans to the Test

In partnership with Madewell

Tube-based ointments and toothpaste, I believe, should be flattened, rolled and squeezed until there is not a speck of goo left that could possibly come out. I also believe that I am not a tube-based ointment (nor am I toothpaste). It’s curious then, isn’t it, that jeans try to treat me like a toiletry? I’ve tried on and buttoned pairs so tight they gave my chest the effect of a pushup bra — my midsection stomach flesh had nowhere to go except straight up toward my armpits, as though someone were trying to make me last just one day longer before they had a chance to run to the store. As such, I’ve become vigilant about testing denim before any offending pair has an opportunity to make it home with me.

When Man Repeller partnered with Madewell for a denim-happy collaboration, we proposed a video of team MR putting Madewell jeans to the test. Madewell was like, “By all means — our jeans have been studying!” Then seven members of the team had at it.

In the privacy of a dressing room, my own test looks something like a mating ritual between exotic birds, a Lamaze class, the P.E. routine from fifth grade that I still sometimes use to warm up before working out, and a dance. Tightness — Can I stand? Can I breathe? Can I be a human, not ointment? — is not the only thing I check for, either. I need to know what the back-gap situation is given that my waist-to-butt radio tends to cause an unwelcome waistband pocket, one that threatens to expose the area where the good lord split me and tempt twerp-y friends to shove snow down my pants. I need to know the jeans will be nap-friendly in case I feel a quick sleep coming on out of nowhere. I need to know they can keep a tucked shirt in place and that there’s plenty of room for extracurricular meals. If they’re white as opposed to blue denim, I need the jeans to not reveal my party underwear. And should I be in a situation where a group photo is being taken and I’m in the front row blocking a friend of equal height behind me, I have to know that a squat down low will not only be possible but an all-around enjoyable experience.

After vigorous rounds of testing, the Madewell jeans passed in flying colors (classic blue, faded blue, white). See for yourself. Then, in the comments below, let us know your own personal version of a denim test.

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  • Kelsey

    Amazing video! Making me super excited for my new Madewells I bought after seeing them on Harling in a shoot a few weeks ago!

    • Harling Ross

      ooh which ones!

      • Kelsey

        10in High Rise Skinny Step hems!

  • Lol Amelia. Whenever I try on jeans I get checked on like five times to ask how I’m doing; I think they think I am either A) stealing something or B) have died, but in reality I am doing a series of checks and taking 100 photos for side by side comparison purposes to determine which option is right 4 me!!

    • Amelia Diamond


  • Cynthia Schoonover

    They’re beyond my budget, as I can only wear jeans on Friday, and I would never spend over a hundred dollars on jeans.

    • Mo

      They’ve got most excellent sale denim though – and if you see a sale pair that looks “Out of stock” online, you can call in and they’ll search their store racks for you. They have student discounts, and they do often have store wide sales. Madewell jeans last a long time and have a great resale value if you find you like to keep your wardrobe rolling.

      • Patty Carnevale

        ALSO they’ll give you $20 if you bring in a pair of your old jeans to recycle 😁

        • Cynthia Schoonover

          Thanks! I can always find a pair to recycle.

      • This is true!! I got a pair of Madewell flares for $35 a few years ago and they are the most complimented piece of clothing I’ve ever owned. Their other jeans are hit or miss for me but these flares?? Favorite item in my closet, hands down.

      • Permanent Bishface

        True! I got a pair for $30 once on their site.

      • Also, I believe that J.Crew denim is now the same (since J.Crew owns Madewell) and they routinely have 30% off everything sales which brings the price way down.

    • Rosemary

      I never thought I would either but I tried on a pair while shopping their sale rack with my mom and we both gasped out loud when I came out of the fitting room. I have NEVER had a pair of jeans fit me even 90%, and these were 100%. They’re perfect. I bought them on the spot and they’re the only jeans I reach for now!


  • Rosemary

    I love this and love that yall are partnering with Madewell! They are my perfect jeans for life. The day I tried a pair on was the first time I ever wore a pair of jeans that fit. Seriously. People talk about the magic of finding the perfect bra fit because most women are wearing the wrong size or whatever, but that was nothing for me compared to the life-changing magic of finding Madewell jeans! I have a crazy waist-to-hip ratio and no other brand designs for it, especially in high-waist styles, but theirs leave no gap whatsoever and also have room for my butt and legs, which I consider a straight-up (or rather, curvy) miracle.

  • This was so cute, you guys. Can you make more of these??

  • saraaa7864

    Leandra, I’m going to be super pregnant in late summer and this stripped top is perfect! One size up from normal you think or too short? I mean, I’m super proud of my growing uterus, but no one wants to see my literal underbelly.

    • Leandra Medine

      Pretty sure it;s a medium!

  • It would be SUPER helpful if they’d restock the maternity jeans though (please!)

  • This was adorable

  • I absolutely adore these videos and admire each of your fab partnerships! More please!!

  • Permanent Bishface

    This is super cute. What a great partnership.

  • Feito Marilena

    Hi! I leave in Buenos Aires, Argentina (pretty well down south!) but I’m a globe troter always in search of the “perfect jeans” in terms of fitting and shades. I’ve discovered Madewell by chance a couple of years ago after trying thousands of european and US brands and, by far, Madewell’s are the best! Just as great as Man Repeller 😜. Besos! Kisses!

  • BK

    The look on Haley’s face as she answers the phone. WHAT ARE THEY SAYING IN THE GROUP CHAT HALEY

  • Rachel

    I’ve recently become obsessed with Madewell, especially their jeans. It’s a good thing I can only shop online with them otherwise if there was a store close by I would be in there every damn week buying stuff.

  • wow. I’ve never tried their jeans. My friend is a big fan, and you guys make them look good (as always). I’ll have to give them a try sometime… My favorite pair by Hudson is getting worn out. I’ve tried to replace them with other washes from Hudson and other styles from J Brand and 7FAM… I just want my exact same pair brand new! 🙁

  • Erica Kan

    More partnerships like these please!! <3

  • Suzan

    The eyebrow raise and then the squat! Haha! Very hilarious little vid, you guys all look amazing!

  • i hear those jeans are made pretty well

  • Merrynell

    Alright you guys, I’m really going to buy a pair because of this. I’ve never owned a pair of Madewell jeans but dammit this video convinced me!

  • Kathleen FitzPatrick

    Best team anywhere!

  • makspiller

    already loved Madewell jeans to start but now I am 100% convinced I need white overalls

  • Ellie

    Love Jasmine’s shorter hair!!

    • Jasmin


  • Janelle

    Are the white overalls wore by Haley in store yet? I am convinced I need them

  • Charlsey

    “I need to know what the back-gap situation is given that my waist-to-butt radio tends to cause an unwelcome waistband pocket” Which style did you get from them? Literally went in on Saturday and nothing fits my big butt and skinny legs simultaneously where regular TopShops and Levi’s do. V sad.

  • Inkygrl

    Their jeans are the best! I have three pairs of the black hi waisted skinnies. They are as comfortable as leggings!

  • Bianca Morassutti

    Haha Best collab ever!

  • Ana Beatriz Quinto