Clothing > Pants & Jeans

12 Best Selvedge Denim Jeans for Men

By Beau Hayhoe  |  Updated March 21, 2024

12 Best Selvedge Denim Jeans for Men
Courtesy of Taylor Stitch

In the world of men’s jeans, you’ve got options. None of those options inspires as much devotion or fandom as selvedge denim, though.

Selvedge jeans are a cut above, with rugged appeal, long-lasting quality and a wide variety of styles and offerings. Do you need a pair? I’d wager yes, you certainly do. Dive into the deep world of denim now.


  • Selvedge denim stands out: Selvedge denim takes greater care in production and more precision than jeans produced on a much larger scale – it’s a worthy investment.
  • As sturdy as it gets: Selvedge denim is mostly measured by the weight of the cotton denim fabric, resulting in a thick, durable pair of jeans designed to mold to your body over time.
  • Selvedge stands the test of time: Selvedge denim pairs remarkably well with other classic pieces, like white tees and moc toe boots. They’re a certified style classic.

Best Overall Selvedge Denim

Levi’s Original Fit 501 Selvedge Jeans

Why did I choose it?

When you just want a tried-and-true classic, a pair of jeans to stand the test of time, Levi’s has you covered. The fit is suitable for all body types, the fabric is dependable, the price is affordable for selvedge denim – what more could you ask for?

Best Premium Selvedge Jeans
Raleigh Denim Dempsey Jeans in Graham Fit

Best Broken-in Selvedge Jeans
Taylor Stitch Democratic Jeans 1-Year Wash Selvage

Best Inexpensive Selvedge Denim
Uniqlo Stretch Selvedge Slim-Fit Jeans

Best Classic Fit Selvedge Jean
Todd Snyder Classic Fit Selvedge Jean

Best Slim Fit Selvedge Jean
Kato Pen Slim Indigo Raw Selvage

Best Overall Selvedge Denim

Levi’s Original Fit 501 Selvedge Jeans


The world of selvedge (or selvage) denim can feel daunting at times, but if you want to dip your toe into that world without spending an arm and a leg, and without going too far over the top, you know where to go.

Of course, that’d be denim pioneer Levi’s, which has made its flattering, classic straight-leg 501 jean for decades. The price is agreeable, the fabric blend is a touch lighter than other selvedge pairs (thanks to the denim and hemp blend), and the medium wash is another timeless touch.

Best Premium Selvedge Jeans

Raleigh Denim Dempsey Jeans in Graham Fit


The best men’s denim on the market offers room for experimentation these days: Gone are the days when every pair of selvedge jeans was a deep, dark blue.

The Dempsey Jeans shake things up with a deep gold-and-blue fade, complemented by brown and gold thread, and they even boast 1 percent elastane for a more comfortable, easygoing wearability.

They’re a nice alternative if you want jeans that allow you to add your own character – while giving the aging and fading process an early start.

Best Broken-in Selvedge Jeans

Taylor Stitch Democratic Jeans 1-Year Wash Selvage


As San Francisco menswear staple Taylor Stitch notes, there’s “nothing quite like a well-worn pair of jeans,” and we’re hard-pressed to argue with that.

Just as with its fan favorite chinos, the slim-straight cut of the Democratic Jeans should fit plenty of body types, which is always a winner in our book. Yet, it’s the black selvedge – washed to replicate the fading on a throwback pair of Taylor Stitch jeans – that makes these highly distinctive.

The brand even used custom-developed rivets and hardware for a long-lasting finish.

Best Inexpensive Selvedge Denim

Uniqlo Stretch Selvedge Slim-Fit Jeans


Paying designer prices for selvedge denim sometimes isn’t all that feasible (although it’s quite the fun journey to find the perfect pair).

On that note, Uniqlo’s stretch selvedge option is as reliable as it gets, all for an affordable price. In my experience, they deliver outstanding bang for your buck.

Best Classic Fit Selvedge Jean

Todd Snyder Classic Fit Selvedge Jean


When a designer like Todd Snyder vouches for his own product by wearing it consistently, that’s when you can count on it becoming a staple in your own wardrobe.

Snyder favors blue jeans at times, and often designs only clothing he’d wear personally – it all comes together in these vintage-minded jeans.

From the shank button fly to the classic (but not overly baggy) fit, these jeans have Snyder’s stamp of approval. They feature chain-stitched selvedge coin pocket detailing, plus a pleasingly faded mid-blue wash and 100 percent cotton construction.

Todd Snyder Sale

Up to 70% off a selection of clearance items

Shop the sale

Best Slim Fit Selvedge Jean

Kato Pen Slim Indigo Raw Selvage


The destination is really about the journey when it comes to finding – and then breaking in – your new favorite pair of selvedge denim.

Start with rich indigo jeans (made from unwashed raw selvage), then make them your own the more you wear them. Your daily wear patterns will create fades prized by denim lovers, and it’s all the better that Kato’s take on selvedge actually features easy-to-wear four-way stretch fabric.

This pair fits slim, a flattering cut you can easily wear with a casual henley come spring, then a rugged cardigan in cooler weather.

Kato Pen Stretch 4-Way Selvedge


Selvedge denim has earned a reputation as being ultra-dependable and sturdy, but perhaps a bit uncomfortable at first wear. Kato solves that problem in as premium a manner as possible, using a durable 14oz. Japanese selvedge denim in inky black – denim that also features 4 percent stretch fabric.

The result is a pair of black jeans with an edgy look and feel, the kind you can wear with a white T-shirt for a crisp and classic look. And because you’re still getting selvedge fabric despite the use of four-way stretch material, they’ll break in wonderfully over time.

RRL Slim Fit Selvedge Denim Jeans


Ralph Lauren already has a penchant for making true American classics, and his RRL brand takes things a step further.

Think: Insanely high-quality fabric, exquisite designs and investment-level quality throughout the entire line, including this pair of selvedge denim.

The price tag is rather eye-popping (nearly $300), but they’re certainly worth the extra dough. The design is based on classic 1940s jeans (now updated with a modern fit), and they were even made on vintage looms in the United States.

Bonobos Stretch Selvage Jeans


You trust Bonobos to make the perfect pair of chinos, right? Place your trust in them when it comes to a pair of the best selvage denim, too.

All the hallmarks of the famed Bonobos fit are present, from the ergonomic waistband to four fit options (ranging from Slim to Athletic). The real winner here in the pleasingly versatile Dark Wash finish and the use of top-notch Japanese denim fabric.

Copper-colored rivets lend a nice touch of contrast, as does the selvedge-trimmed coin pocket. All that’s missing to round out your next #OOTD? A Bonobos Oxford or chambray shirt.

Buck Mason Japanese Loomstate Selvedge Denim


Buck Mason already models its handsome menswear off classic styles, from T-shirts to expertly faded jeans.

These Japanese selvedge jeans go a step further, using tasteful throwback details like a straight-leg fit, a button fly and of course, absurdly beautiful fabric you can break in on your own. 

Outerknown Local Straight Fit Selvage


The denim industry was once known for excess, from water used in production to leftover fabric, but makers like Outerknown (founded by surfing legend Kelly Slater) are setting out to change that.

Slater’s brand makes its jeans at the world’s “cleanest denim factory,” according to the brand, and they do so using famed Italian denim from one of the world’s top mills.

The deep blue denim is complemented by gold contrast thread, and the color should fade quite nicely the more you wear this pair.

Todd Snyder Lightweight Japanese Selvedge


Breaking in selvedge denim doesn’t have to be a tedious exercise – sometimes, you want comfort and quality out of the box, and Todd Snyder hits the nail on the head with a lightweight pair packed with high-quality details.

Contrast stitching and rich Japanese fabric deliver absurd quality throughout.

What Is Selvedge Denim?

Selvedge denim is a type of cotton denim known for using the self-edge (or self-finished) side of the fabric. This process results in the outseam of the jeans showing a contrasting white-and-red fabric edge, visible at the cuff of the jeans.

This is also why selvedge jeans are commonly worn with a cuff – all the better to show off the hand-finished process. Most selvedge denim is a dark, inky blue, allowing the self-finished edge to stand out even more.

Why Is Selvedge Denim So Desirable?

Selvedge denim is desirable because of the care and craftsmanship that goes into each pair, resulting in a sturdy, stylish pair of jeans. Selvedge is remarkably unique in the denim world, all thanks to the intensive process used to create its hand-finished fabric edge.

Selvedge fabrics hail from denim hotspots like Japan, with different fabric weights lending a sturdier hand feel and long-lasting durability. Each pair also molds uniquely to the wearer: No two pairs of selvedge end up looking the same.

What’s the Difference Between Raw and Selvedge?

While selvedge denim refers to the self-edge of the fabric used in the jeans, raw denim is simply denim that hasn’t been washed or pre-treated.

Most selvedge jeans are crafted from raw, unwashed denim, but some prominent denim brands take selvedge denim and use a garment-washing process before the wearer can put them to the test individually.

Some selvedge denim is also made from 100 percent cotton, but some brands use small amounts of elastane to give selvedge some crucial stretch.

WERD has been reader-supported since 2009. When you buy through a link on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. We do not accept compensation for reviews.
WERD is proud to be hosted by Kinsta