5 Times Denim Delighted—And Offended—Us

Somehow, denim, the most neutral, American of fabrics, is able to switch its tone so seamlessly. Cut-off denim shorts, for example, are a ubiquitous summer staple—but taken a step further and turned into denim underwear, they’re provocative and dirty. Just a few days ago Y/Project debuted denim underwear—or short-shorts, depending on just how daring you are—that comes complete with pockets, should you choose to go sans-pants entirely.


But denim’s storied history of shocking us, horrifying us, AND delighting us is rich with denim turned into underwear Canadian tuxedos. Here’s some of its best moments.

5 Times Denim Delighted and Offended Us

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1. The Iconic Canadian Tuxedo—History—and later on, a lot of nostalgic Instagram accounts—was made when Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake stepped out in matching head-to-toe denim outfits. The moment celebrated its 18th birthday last October and, almost two decades later, the outfits became a grandfather of sorts of the Yeehaw Couture movement.

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2. Thibaut’s Denim Thong Jeans—Last year, Japanese label Thibaut debuted a thong jean at Amazon Fashion Week in Tokyo. The otherwise-baggy bottoms were ripped and deconstructed to the point where they became, essentially, a thong with long, thin denim strips in place of seams. Though they created an internet frenzy, the label’s designer, Meiko Ban, was nonplussed. When asked how the idea came out, she told i-D, “When I cut off [the] denim, I couldn’t stop cutting them.”

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3. Denim Chaps—Whether thigh-high Uggs, denim underwear, or these denim chaps, Y/Project has a knack for designing products that would also be very much at home on an Alibaba deep search. Their high-waisted denim chaps are perfect for the urban cowboy who hasn’t saddled a horse but does kill Shania Twain’s “Man, I Feel Like a Woman!” at karaoke.

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4. Nicki Minaj’s Acid-Wash Denim Moment—In 2012, Minaj stepped out in a contrasting denim ensemble with more flair than an episode of Reba. Wearing acid-wash jeans tucked into Louboutin dark-denim boots along with a matching cropped denim jacket, backward cap, and bejeweled bra, it was a #mood of a look.

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5. One-Legged Jeans—Certain outfits do incite a sort of parental “C’mon now,” and one-legged jeans are one of those things. Pushbutton, a Seoul label started by former K-pop star Seung Gung Park, debuted a pair last January that featured one full-length pant leg and one very short one. Though I’m inclined to doubt their wearability, sleeping with one leg tossed out of your covers is a good way to balance out your body temperature—at least for about 10 minutes.


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