Jeans are probably your favorite go-to pair of pants for every activity other than your 9-to-5. (And if you’re allowed to wear jeans to work? You, sir, are winning at life.) What’s not to love? The right pair of jeans is comfortable, durable, and easy to match with just about any other outfit. They’re easy to clean—and by that we mean you can get away with not washing them for weeks—and even deliver a bit of sex appeal, too. (Just clean them before date night.)
And while there are several styles of jeans trending for fall—like a vintage light wash, or a grungy skinny leg with ripped detailing (think Kanye West’s Yeezy collection)—there’s something undeniably cool about keeping it classic and donning a sleek pair of simple dark denim everywhere you go. The no-fuss style is versatile, and it’ll last you years (not to mention make your life a hell of a lot easier).
So there’s just one thing you need to think about when buying jeans: The fit. You just want to make sure to find a pair that’s not slouchy or boxy. No floods, but no pooling around the ankles. No high-waisted dad jeans, but no super-low-cut bagginess. The simple answer? You can’t go wrong with a slim-to-straight leg silhouette. For most brands, that’s the most flattering cut for an athletic guy like yourself. It’ll actually stay up without the help of a belt, too. (And if you’re not sure about your actual pants size, get out a damn measuring tape and measure the inseam and your waistband.)
To help you out, we rounded up 15 pairs from the best brands in the business who seriously know their denim. The following pairs are sturdy, masculine, and far more cleaned-up than your average pair. Team them with Chelsea boots and a blazer, or maybe a bomber jacket and sneakers—hell, even a t-shirt and Chucks—and they’ll help you nail any look you’re aiming for.