A few years back, a 20-something Londoner probably wouldn’t be seen dead in Marks and Spencer clothes.
Associated with little old ladies and Percy Pigs, M&S wasn’t usually somewhere younger people would go for the latest fashion.
However, in recent years the retailer has caught the eye of younger shoppers with their trendy new affordable, high quality and – importantly – eco-conscious fashion ranges, the latest of which is their new denim drop.
For me, and for many other fashion-lovers, buying quality over quantity and shopping sustainably has become very important recently.
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Since fashion is one of the world’s biggest polluters, with textile production contributing more to climate change than international flights and shipping combined (House of Common Environmental Audit Committee, 2019), many of us have realised that it’s necessary to shop smarter and with the planet in mind, and Marks and Spencer is making it so much easier.
The new M&S denim range is made with 100 per cent responsibly sourced cotton, less water and kinder chemicals compared to the industry average for denim garment finishing.
The latter is important because, according to 2020 data from McKinsey, “washing, solvents, and dyes used in manufacturing are responsible for one-fifth of industrial water pollution.”
A spokesperson from M&S said: “100 per cent of the cotton used for all M&S clothing will always be responsibly sourced, with the majority through the Better Cotton Initiative – helping farmers to reduce their water usage and increase their profits.”
M&S is also renowned for its high-quality clothing that can quite literally be passed down generations, so coupling this with trendy styles and an eco-conscious outlook makes their clothes more appealing to sustainable fashion-lovers.
In fact, M&S have said: “Quality underpins everything we do and we make our clothes to last, ensuring that our customers can wear them for years to come and then confidently give them a second life.”
This is why, when I was given the chance to try out a pair of jeans from Marks and Spencer’s new denim range, I jumped at the opportunity.
I picked out a pair of the Mom High Waisted Jeans in Light Indigo, which just so happen to be a pair worn and loved by fashionable This Morning star Holly Willoughby.
Holly’s known for showing off her high-street looks on daytime TV, adding a touch of glamour to the likes of M&S, & Other Stories, Zara and Whistles.
When I pulled on the jeans she is known for wearing, I could instantly see why she’s such an advocate for the brand.
They are the comfiest pair of jeans I’ve ever worn.
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They’re made of the softest cotton, so wearing the jeans felt like I was still wearing my trusty lockdown jogging bottoms. But looking in the mirror I realised I looked much better than the slob I’ve been since March 2020.
I’d say they fit fairly true to size, though you may want to size down for a snugger fit.
The Mom cut lends a vintage touch, and the light wash denim made me feel like I’d just stepped out of the 90s – in the best way.
The jeans are slim at the waist, fitted on the hips and baggier on the legs to give that casual, couldn’t-care-less attitude to fashion that everyone yearns for.
The only gripe I have is that the back pocket placement is slightly odd, and the jeans could maybe do with being a bit more fitted around the hips, but they still looked great nonetheless.
Since the jeans are almost 100 per cent cotton (99 per cent cotton, one per cent elastane), there’s no chance of them stretching out at the knees or losing their shape, but the denim isn’t stiff at all.
On their first outing, I wore them with a plain white t-shirt knotted at the waist – flattering with the high waisted jean cut – a pair of classic black and white Converse and a beige wool coat.
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I felt classically cool, comfy enough for a long spring walk round the park but fashionable enough that I could be Instagrammed at any moment.
If I looked half as good as Holly in these jeans, I’d say I was onto a winner.
At just £39.50 a pair, these high-quality, on-trend but classic vintage-style jeans are sure to be a decades-long investment without the high price tag.
Thanks, M&S – I’ll never go back.