5 Black Jean Outfit Ideas to Get You Out of That Denim Style Rut

A look for each day of the work week.

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If we're talking building blocks of a wardrobe, at least one pair of black jeans is essential. These go-with-everything bottoms are flattering, comfortable (once you find the right fit), and come in a variety of styles. You have your skinnies—a universally beloved silhouette—the cropped frayed ankle, the straight leg, the mom jeans, the baggy boyfriend jeans, and many more. And they complement pretty much any article of clothing, from a floral puff-shoulder top to a plain white button-up.

Because black jeans are so easy to wear, you may find yourself falling into a style rut—i.e. wearing your black skinnies with a sweater three out of five days at the office. (I'm not judging; this is 100-percent me.) Slowly, your jeans no longer bring you the same sartorial joy as when you first bought them. In order to prevent this, I present you with five different black jean outfit ideas (one for each of the workdays, if you need) that will keep the essential feeling fresh. All it takes is a little street style inspo to remind you that black jeans are, and always will be, magical.

Black Jeans + Colorful Boot

Street Style - New York Fashion Week September 2018 - Day 5

(Image credit: Matthew Sperzel)

Dress from the bottom up, starting with a pair of colorful boots. They'll give life back to the pair of black bottoms you wear every day. The easiest way to make sure your shoe matches the rest of your outfit is to pick a t-shirt, blouse, or sweater in the same tone as your footwear. If you're wearing blush-colored booties, chose a pinkish top. If you're more into that mix-and-match look, disregard this tip completely and wear whatever top or bootie you want, like this street style star did.

Animal Print Jacket + Slouchy Jeans

Street Style : Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2019 : Day Eight

(Image credit: Claudio Lavenia)

Skinny black jeans will always be a closet staple. For this season, though, step outside your silhouette comfort zone and try a pair of slightly more slouchy tapered boyfriend jeans. If you're worried that the baggy style makes you look shorter, add heeled combat boots for extra height. Bring the whole look together with a leopard print jacket and plain white top. These are all basics you likely already have in your wardrobe, just styled together in a new way. (If you're missing a piece just shop the items directly, below.)

Head-to-Toe Black

Street Style : Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2018/2019 : Day Seven

(Image credit: Edward Berthelot)

The head-to-toe black outfit isn't a new idea, but you can pull off the outfit in a way that will feel fresh and capture everyone's attentions. It boils down to the style of the pieces you choose and a key accessory. Take Eva Chen's look, above, dressed up with a PVC hat. This tiny piece added a trendy element to an otherwise basic look. Her outerwear choice was unique too: Check out the zipper!

Bright Colors on Top + Black Jeans

Street Style - LFW September 2018

(Image credit: Edward Berthelot)

If head-to-toe black is too angsty for you, meet halfway by sticking to colors up top and black on the bottom. Give your least-worn color (maybe it's orange?) time to shine and don't worry about overdoing anything—your black jeans and sling backs are the perfect canvas for this fashion experiment. People will immediately center their eyes on you and street style photographers may even stop you to take an outfit snap. The ultimate compliment.

Sheer Top + Black Jeans

Street Style - Paris - December 2016

(Image credit: Edward Berthelot)

Wearing a sheer top seems less daunting when you can tuck it into your safety blanket: black jeans. Reach for a lace top that offers more coverage than a flimsy mesh shirt (the latter is much more suited for the office) and layer a cami underneath to prevent any NSFW mishaps. Avoid catching a cold with a layer of outerwear on top, be it a blazer or a furry coat.

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Marina Liao
Fashion Editor

Marina Liao is the former fashion news editor at MarieClaire.com, where she covered celebrity style (from Meghan Markle to Katie Holmes), fashion trends, and shopping advice, plus conducted original interviews with industry insiders. She's also had many opportunities to write content in other areas such as beauty, food, tech, and even home. Her previous fashion stints include POPSUGAR and Cosmopolitan.