I mentioned earlier that I was chosen by Levi’s to test out/blog about their new Women’s Commuter Jeans and now the time has come to do a formal review. As you all know, Levi’s came out with their men’s bike commuter clothing collection ages ago, with no apparent interest in a women’s collection. At last, however, they have caught up with the times and demands of women who bike, and released a women’s collection of jeans, shorts, shirts and jackets, all designed with bike commuting in mind. This has been greeted in my circles with cries of relief and success.

I got a pair of the Commuter Skinny Jeans in “Cityscape Blue.” They are also available in “Monument,” a light gray, and black; Eleanor’s NYC got the blue blue pair that no longer seem to be available (I know I’d seen them on the website at one point!). At first glance, they look just like a normal pair of jeans, but they are full of bike-friendly details: “temperature control technology,” stretch, “odor repellent,” a high rise, reflective detail on the inside side seam, lined back pockets and flatlocked seams for comfort. And the all-important Levi’s leather patch on the back right hip is black, rather than traditional tan; it would have been cool if this was reflective! The little red tab is there though (I would have made that reflective).

I was a bit worried about the fit, to be honest, having seen an ad somewhere that said, “Our skinniest fit yet!” and therefore asked for a size 10, one size up from my normal 8. Glad I did! They are definitely the skinniest jeans I have ever tried on. They are tight on my calves! Really? But…. once I get them on, they are amazingly flattering, thanks, I’m sure to the high rise waist. These jeans don’t just have a higher rise in the back, they are higher all the way around. This is a trend that is creeping its way into our wardrobes, and I feel ready to embrace it now. I wish I had a longer inseam pair but there is plenty of reflective detail showing when i cuff them up over my ankle bone. The front pockets are not particularly deep, nor are the back pockets, and there is no U-lock loop. I don’t wear my U-lock but know some women like to, so if you are one of them, be aware of that missing feature.

Checking out a Little Free Library in my Levi's Commuter Jeans

Checking out a Little Free Library in my Levi’s Commuter Jeans

I have worn these jeans biking as well as being a tourist in the American History Museum on the National Mall, so I have had the chance to test them out in different scenarios. The denim seems to loosen up nicely the more you wear them, which I appreciate. They are easy to bike in, and the high waist holds in my tummy a bit more than my other jeans. I don’t bike in jeans enough to worry about the crotch rubbing thin, so I can’t say how I think that will turn out, but the denim seems sturdy enough. I’ve only worn them in the cold, so as of yet I can’t speak to the temperature control technology, and I have no intention of finding out how well the odor repellent feature works.

I had The Mechanic take photos on a not-quite-warm-enough day, and I tucked my turtleneck in to show the high waist. Taking another one for the team by sharing photos I’m not 100% comfortable with…

The high rise is flattering but I'd still never wear shirts tucked into my jeans.

The high rise is flattering but I’d still never wear shirts tucked into my jeans.

At $88, I think these are a good investment if you are looking to support companies that make women’s bike clothing; not too pricey, not too cheap. Levi Strauss & Co. is a company I’d like to support more because it is a company that is trying to be more sustainable. For example, they created a line of jeans (again, only for men) that use less water in the production process, but by encouraging consumers to wash their jeans less often to reduce water usage. Putting my money where my values are means that I will explore more Levi’s products, like this women’s Commuter bike shirt.

Overall, I am quite happy with these jeans, and very grateful to Levi’s for giving me the opportunity to test them out. I am interested to hear what you think of them, if you own them or have tried them on. Susi at VeloJoy is happy with hers as well – what about you? Levis 6



14 thoughts on “Clothing Review: Levi’s Commuter Jeans for Women

  1. Looks great, those jeans on you.

    I have 2 pairs of black Yoga Jeans around same price as Levi’s. They have a tiny bit of spandex and 1 pair is skinny, stovepipe leg. I’ve only worn them cycling for short distances to work meetings. I just don’t want to wear them out because it’s been tough for me to find jeans that look good on a tiny person like me who doesn’t want to wear low rise jeans and the jeans must look good enough for business casual workplace.

    Here I am: https://thirdwavecyclingblog.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/businesswear.jpg

    • I never wear jeans to work, and for me they are not summer or winter pants, so in truth, I rarely wear jeans – and now I have 6 pairs (one is in shreds while three are bike-specific). And I rarely wear black clothing of any kind. It’s so hard to find the perfect clothing items that fulfill every criteria, isn’t it?! Luckily for me, I enjoy the hunt. : )

      • I used to work for some employers who did have a more formal dress code and hence, did a lot of changing after cycling to work.

        A lot of rack clothing in stores do not fit me or it’s too expensive /rare for me to wear something to justify the cost. Since I stopped sewing full garments, I just aim for classic cut clothing and primarily solid single colours that will carry me fashion-wise for a few years. Generally, I no longer wear floral prints /avoid wearing clothes with small patterns..it just ages me. So it’s just in scarves around my face.

        Sadly a lot of dressier styles in terms of tops, dresses and skirts are wider than 25 years ago. Just awful and I hate to say to mask/meet needs of women who now tend to be bigger even if they are a lot younger. At least that’s the case living in the prairies.

      • Isn’t it amazing to see how sizes have changed over the years? I remember being a J. Crew addict decades ago because they were the only place I could get tall length pants, and now everyone seems to have at least some option (although generally they are available online only, which means a lot of ordering and returning, since I can’t try stuff on in stores). And sometimes, scarves are the safest way to embrace a trend!

  2. They look great on you! As a curvy girl I avoid skinny jeans like the plague. Most don’t work for me as they are not ice cream cone shaped. If they are big enough at the top they are weirdly baggy at the ankles. It would be great to know if the odor control works as I would wear these to work and it is so hot in the summers that I sweat when I ride.

    • Thanks! It’s crazy that women count swimsuits and jeans are the hardest clothing items to pick, isn’t it? I’m not even sure how odor control is supposed to work in clothing – I am pretty sure I wash stuff before it gets to stinky, although I let pants go 2-3 times before washing. I’ll see if I notice though, and let you know!

  3. I really like the look of these. I’ve just finished making my first pair of jeans and have the idea of making a cycling pair – adding reflective and you can wash in or spray on a water repellent finish. The list of things I want to make just grows longer by the day – working life is just getting in the way!

    • I am so amazed and envious of people who sew their own jeans!!! I need a second person to help me fit pants before I would be confident enough to make my own. Since you have that skill, you should definitely try to make your own bike jeans! I would, if i could! I agree, it’s not fair that work gets in the way of sewing! : )

  4. Thanks for the review. I have the feeling a lot of women are going to pass on these because like me, they’ll never buy skinny jeans. That style does not really favour hips. You look great and even you had to size up. I’ve got a pair of the Novaro cycling jeans (on sale right now for less than $40) on their way, and I’m looking forward to trying those out. Have you tried them?

    But ultimately, I’m saving my pennies for the Sprinter Trousers from Velocity (http://velocitycyclewear.cc/shop/trousers/the-sprinter/). Not only do they seem like they’ll be far more flattering (and they’re super cute), they’re made in England as opposed to off-shore.

    • Even these are skinnier than most, eek! My biggest problem with pants is my thighs, more than my hips – ironically, clothing companies that now offer “curvy” fit pants never take thigh shape into consideration, just hips. Never anything perfect, is there?!

      Those Sprinter Trousers are cute, although I find that pleated pants make my belly look poochier. I haven’t worn them since the 80s! Let me know when you get them, though, I’d love to hear your thoughts on them. And I too appreciate that they are made in England. I’ve eyed their Climber pants in the past but dislike how low rise they are in the front. I wish I was better at making pants, or I’d make my own! Wish local made didn’t always = costly, too, sigh.

      • I just got the Novara cycling pants; they’re great. I’ve got hips, and somehow they fit well and there’s no (or not much) waistband gap (eech). I plan to post a review to my blog sometime in the near future.

      • I got the Novara jeans and they are pretty comfy, but I don’t like the padded crotch, and they are too short on my long legs. Someday I will do a comparison of all three bike jeans. If you have your review out by then, I’ll include it!

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