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Top Denim Trends Right off the Runway for 2022


Denim has returned after a long period of loungewear, thanks to the continued obsession with Y2K-inspired looks. Major fashion labels have also promoted denim by giving the classics a fresh take. 

You can count on sequins, embellishments, and party-ready denim ensembles in 2022. This article will take a look at some of the top denim trends that fashion retailers can add to their product catalogs.

Table of Contents
Overview of the global denim market
Top denim trends straight off the runway
To sum up

Overview of the global denim market

Woman wearing denim jeans and a blue top

Denim is back and dominating the fashion world with reworked vintage and Y2K-inspired party looks. The denim industry is expected to grow at a 4.2% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) to US $88.1 billion by 2030. Furthermore, Levi’s saw a 29% increase in 2021, which is set to continue. 

As people return to everyday affairs, brands are reinventing this wardrobe staple by updating it to meet shoppers’ evolving preferences. This includes recycled denim products, 90s-inspired denim bustiers, party jackets, denim skirts, utility pants, and revamped low-rise jeans.

Top denim trends straight off the runway

Woman wearing a denim skirt and a white top

Denim is a wardrobe essential that is constantly reinvented. It is a global classic that comes in many different sizes, fits, colors, and textures. The latest runway trends show that denim is still on top of its game, with new twists on old favorites. It is safe to say that investing in denim is a wise bet. 

According to the NPD group, straight-leg jeans were the best-selling fit among women in 2021, followed by flared and boot-cut fits. Skinny jeans are out for the season. Major brands such as Missoni debuted baggy fits with a low-strung rise on their Milan runways.

Much of the 2022 trends are reimagined versions of the 1980s and 1990s, with over-the-top shapes, patchwork, embellishments, abrasions, and super low-rises. 

Trims and sequins are frequently used to line the hems for added drama. Many of the pieces have soft undertones to give them a vintage appearance. And lastly, functionality and aesthetics were recurring themes throughout most collections.

Denim bustier

Image of a navy blue denim corset

Corsets are gaining popularity due to top fashion brands like Versace featuring bustiers in their latest campaigns. Also, celebrities like Billie Eilish and the Hadid sisters popularized this trend by wearing them to the Met Gala — the year’s biggest fashion event. 

The main difference between modern bustiers and traditional ones is that they are available in a wide range of sizes and for all body types. Every runway campaign’s message was to make women feel empowered and confident while having fun.

The most recent bustiers are lingerie-inspired, vintage-inspired corsets and 1990s bralettes. Bold colors, metallic undertones, and exotic prints are prominent, and they pair well with sexy low-rise jeans, denim skirts, or denim utility pants. 

It’s a perfect blend of 90s fashion and Y2K style that’s still going strong. Many customers prefer the comfort offered by denim bralettes in cotton blends with elasticated bands for a glamorous look and a comfortable touch.

Denim skirt

Woman wearing a denim skirt and a white top

Continuing the denim trend, denim skirts in different styles such as high-rise, maxi length, micro inseam skirts, Y2K-inspired belt detailing, and wrap skirts emerge as top items for A/W 22–23. 

The wrap-detailing silhouette, which offers glamor and drama in a tiny pocket, has been introduced by major fashion labels such as Diesel. Furthermore, the Y2K-inspired belts target younger shoppers due to their growing popularity among millennial Instagram influencers. 

Blue denim skirt with a slit at the bottom

Maxi-length denim skirts with vintage appeal are also popular this season. This classic piece has been updated with embellishments, including embroidered patchwork. For an edgy look, pair them with plain tees or bustiers. 

Besides maxis, Louis Vuitton’s latest runway capsule has brought back midis. They can be worn with anything, from designer jackets to bralettes, and can be complete with high heels or sporty sandals. One thing is sure: denim is an excellent investment because it is a fabric that can be worn daily and will never go out of style.

Women’s denim party trucker

Denim jacket with colorful detailing

People are ready to return to the party scene after a long hiatus, and denim truckers provide a sexy yet restrained look ideal for a night out. This includes embellishments for a dramatic look, high shine for a glossy and polished finish, and luxe collars made of faux fur in extravagant portions. 

Dark washes with tailored structuring are also on-trend, thanks to big fashion houses like Armani and Chloe. For a sophisticated look, pair these truckers with pencil skirts, low-slung jeans, or mini skirts. They look great with large totes and moccasins for a more formal, office-ready look.

Woman wearing a sequin-adorned jacket

Replace casual jackets with oversized denim truckers adorned with sequin trims and eye-catching buttons for a dazzling finish. Other details include embroidered patches and acid washes, which give the piece a vintage feel.

Furthermore, using recycled fabric is wise as many customers actively look for sustainable options. Ensure they have the style and appeal associated with the most recent fashion.

Women’s low-rise jeans

Woman wearing dark-wash denim jeans

The polarizing low-strung jeans have returned this season with a more body-inclusive perspective. The previous standards of slim and young have given way to a more acceptable concept of all body silhouettes. 

Low-strung jeans are no longer limited to skinny fits but are also available in oversized, bootcut, cut-off waistband, high-shine finish, and cut-out detailing styles. The low-rise baggy style, inspired by 90s hip-hop culture, is comfortable and stylish. 

Woman wearing denim jeans and a denim top

The bootcut style provides a dramatic finish at the bottom, and the hip cut-out style provides a risky yet sexy look for the ones who are daring. These jeans are available in various colors and textures, such as the 90s-inspired acid-wash finish or the 60s-inspired ashy look. 

Jeans with a high-shine finish are another popular trend this season and have been seen on a number of runaways. In any case, the common theme of 2022 is the inclusivity of all body silhouettes with 90s style. All that is required to keep up with the latest trends is an edgy denim ensemble.

Women’s utility denim pants

Woman wearing dark denim pants

This season, utility denim pants are a must-have item due to the continued craze with Y2K-inspired looks. This style is worth investing in as it dominates spring and winter runways. There is a slight shift from streetwear numbers to more refined partywear iterations. This includes cargo pants with large pockets topped with lace trims and acid-washed vintage tropes for a glamorous look. These versatile pieces can be worn for casual or formal occasions.

Since the focus is on utility, the pants must be functional and something that can be styled easily. The figure-hugging silhouettes of vintage clothing go well with strappy sandals or boots. 

Furthermore, pants with rhinestone adornments inspired by noughties trends were seen on the Dolce & Gabbana runways. For a party-ready look, pair these pants with plain white tees and an oversized denim jacket embellished with sequins.

To sum up

Designers and brands have succumbed to Y2K-inspired styling for this season. From classic low-rise jeans to noughties-inspired party jackets, the classics are repurposed to create sexy yet restrained looks. 

Additionally, party-ready ensembles were a recurring theme on the catwalks. This includes denim skirts with a high shine for a glossy appearance and jackets with embellishments for added drama. Thus, look for products that are Instagram-worthy and ones that can be donned at a nightclub. 

Other popular trends include denim bustiers for an elegant yet edgy look and jeans with hip cut-outs for a risque look. Explore pieces that are sure to catch people’s attention on social media to help ensure holiday buy-ins.

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