We always knew it was going to happen. In world of fashion, good things cannot last forever. Somewhere in and amongst the introduction of mom jeans, embroidered denim and button-up a-line midis, skinny jeans have begun to fade into obscurity, becoming as relevant as last year’s #slogan t-shirts.
The extinction of skinny jeans has been upon us for a while – it’s endangered species status subject to it’s dominant and long-standing fashion classic of a sister, the straight leg.
Yes, that’s right – it’s time to bode farewell to those elasticated, forgiving, skin-tight beauties – structured denim is here to stay, in all it’s restrictive glory.
But it’s not all doom and gloom – believe it or not – we’re actually advocates of the straight-leg jean – and for a very, very good reason.
Are Skinny Jeans Creating Victims of Fashion?
Some feel that skinny jeans should be restricted to straight sized girls. We’ve never heard anything so ridiculous.
The more pressing reason to make the switch however, lies in the impact of skinny jeans take upon personal health.
The fashion industry comes up against hot water for it’s impact on mental and physical health – with eating disorders and underweight models as popular as subject as the runways themselves. A lesser known fact is, fashion can hurt – and not in a, “oh, I really want those jeans so much it hurts” kind of way, but rather a “every time you wear super tight, super skinny jeans you’re actually risking your health” kind of way.
Ever felt that uncomfortable squeeze round the stomach after a day of wearing skinny jeans? In March, 2015, the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry (or JNNP for short) reported a rather terrifying case.
A 35 year old women presented with severe weakness in her ankles. The day before, she’d been helping a family member move house – which of course, involved a lot of heavy lifting, squatting and the like. As the day progressed, the lady complained of discomfort around the legs, and later than even when walking home, collapsed and was unable to get up until a passerby found her several hours later.
The perpetrator? Skinny jeans.
Unfortunately for the poor lady, what had occurred was the bleeding and swelling of a group of muscles, also known as compartment syndrome, exacerbated by the restraining nature of skinnies, which ultimately lead to a loss of control over the feet. Needless to say, amongst treatment, a prescription to lay off the skinny jeans was administered.
Whilst this may seem like an extreme case, the risks of skinny jeans stretch (no pun intended) well beyond compartment syndrome.
For women susceptible to urinary tract infections, it’s often advised to steer clear of skinnies. The tight, close and often sweaty environment needs no imagination to see how the dearly beloved tight denim could be a breeding ground for the nastiest of downstairs infections.
But, as much as UTIs are bad in themselves, it’s not just your poor bladder you have to worry about. In 2004, the European Journal of Obstetrics and & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology published a study that surveyed over 900 women in Italy. It was found those who wore skinny jeans at least once a week had an increased risk of Bacterial Vaginosis.
If you don’t know what that is and don’t benefit from a strong stomach, I’d strongly advise against Googling.
Feeling peaky? It might not just be these medical studies that have rumbled your tummy. To make matters worse, skinny jeans and other tight garments are also tied to digestive issues. That constant pressure on your abdomen, it turns out, is an accomplice to acid reflux.
As your stomach expands throughout the day from many a cake-eating, that dig into your waistband is doing more than just making you feel like a toothpaste tube – it’s in fact moving around your insides, and pushing the contents of your stomach upwards. Hello, Heartburn.
Our Saviour, the Straight Leg
If there’s ever been a more compelling reason to switch from the skinny to the straight leg jean, it’s for your own health. But that’s not to say, we’re having a trade off in style. The truth is, whilst the straight leg has been out of fashion for longer than probably anybody born after the 90s can remember, it is in it’s own right a fashion icon – Levi 501’s anybody?
However, over the past decade, skinny jeans have integrated themselves into fashion culture as a staple – a trend that was lead by the technological development of stretch denim. It’s now bred into the mindsets of the mass public that anything outside of skinny jeans is utterly frumptastic.
They were to our generation what the iPod was to music.
As a result, it’s unlikely we’ll see skinny jeans disappear from the high street entirely – and let’s face it, with only the odd case here or there of the nasties, it would be bad sense to chuck out your entire collection in one-go.
All we’re saying is: try the damn straight-leg. It’s good for you.
What are your thoughts on the straight leg jean? Do health implications make you want to give your skinny jeans up? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!