Is there an American Giant of jeans?
November 29, 2017 12:24 PM   Subscribe

Looking for indestructible, non-stretch, black, relaxed-fit men's jeans.

My husband keeps buying the same Levis that fall apart after a year. It seems like with each iteration the quality gets lower. He has been very happy with his American Giant hoodies and I'm wondering what exists in the denim space that's comparable (i.e. US-made or otherwise "responsibly" manufactured, bulletproof quality), so we at least stop throwing away these pathetically fragile jeans. I'd pay a pretty penny to get this right.

He likes a very relaxed fit (I think it's a Levis 550) and has never worn jeans with stretch, and I don't think he'd be willing to start. He also only wears black jeans. I think his jeans look pretty 90's and unstylish, but that's what he likes and I want to get him something he'll actually wear, so a slimmer fit is a nonstarter. This knocks out a lot of suggestions, unfortunately, since more stylish manufacturers often don't have a looser fit than a well-fitted straight leg.

There are some previous questions with suggestions I'll look into, but I wanted to get the latest, since boutiquey jeans seems to be a fairly active space.
posted by potrzebie to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (14 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Take a look at Texas Jeans
I was considering buying from them before I found Gustin which works better for me (button fly, more hipster appeal).
posted by Dmenet at 12:30 PM on November 29, 2017

I have never heard of a pair of jeans that lasted more than a year with regular use. This might be a case of needing to adjust your expectations.
posted by TestamentToGrace at 12:51 PM on November 29, 2017

How about Carhartt? Their whole thing is being super durable and American and responsibly manufactured.
posted by erst at 1:06 PM on November 29, 2017 [6 favorites]

Or Duluth Trading
posted by Huck500 at 1:08 PM on November 29, 2017 [5 favorites]

Seconding Duluth Trading. Also their Fire Hose jeans.
posted by lobstah at 2:34 PM on November 29, 2017 [1 favorite]

I can't speak to all of the issues, but Dickies exist for a reason. They're work pants. They're cheap. They remind me of when I was a kid and my mom would buy me some jeans I only knew as "toughskins", because they were meant for little boys who are always getting into shit and tearing the knees out of their jeans.

Dickies are not comfortable when you first get them. They feel like toughskins. They're not stylish. They're just functional.

Carhartt is probably in the same neighborhood but I'd guess more expensive.
posted by booooooze at 3:12 PM on November 29, 2017 [1 favorite]

My husband has started getting his at Walmart (of all places). After a lifetime of Levis he is now wearing Wranglers, relaxed fit, with a bit of elastic in the waist. He would wear them forever if I didn't make him buy some new ones every couple of years. Make your guy try them on (they hate that, so you may have to buy beer afterwards), Mr Lareg is very comfortable and doesn't look like he's wearing crappy old out-of style jeans. Sorry I don't have the actual number or style, I've been on my feet all day and I'm not getting up until it's bath time.
posted by Enid Lareg at 3:28 PM on November 29, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'll go below Wal-Mart and suggest Basic Equipment jeans from Kmart at ~$10.99 a pair. They have regular and relaxed fits, no logos, and you can buy five pairs for the price of one pair of 550s. I have some that are 10 years old with no signs of wear and literally a hundred washings. Best selection is online.

Disclaimer: I can only wear jeans from November through February due to the Tropic heat. But they get worn and washed plenty in four months.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 3:47 PM on November 29, 2017 [1 favorite]

Take a look at Arbor Wear. They are made of pretty tough, thick denim.
posted by TomFoolery at 4:02 PM on November 29, 2017

They aren't made in the USA, but I consider my many pairs of these Patagonia jeans to be a American Giant equivalent. In fact, I am currently wearing these jeans with an American Giant t-shirt and hoodie.

I don't bicycle commute in snow with them anymore since I've moved back to LA, but I do wear/wash them a lot and they last a long while.

Also, if your husband has muscular legs, I recommend them even more highly.
posted by sideshow at 5:32 PM on November 29, 2017

Everlane has started selling jeans, if you want something a little trendy. I just bought two pairs because they have real pockets which apparently no-one else thinks women want anymore? Also they are minimally stretchy, which is a nice change. They have a men's line too. Online only, and they advertise as being ethically produced, for some value of ethical. Plus they are under $100.
posted by Lawn Beaver at 7:13 AM on November 30, 2017

You can't go wrong with Wranglers for cheap, comfortable, durable jeans. But they are not made in the USA.
posted by fimbulvetr at 7:21 AM on November 30, 2017

Coming in to nth the Duluth Trading Fire Hose jeans — they're incredibly sturdy. My partner's had a few pairs that've lasted years of near-daily wear. Relaxed fit, lots of pockets, and apparently indestructible.
posted by culfinglin at 11:23 AM on November 30, 2017

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