A stack of blue jeans.

Fitting Room Review: Target’s Universal Thread High-Rise Skinny Jeans

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Last weekend when I was at Target, I only had time to try on one pair of jeans from their new denim line, Universal Thread. But that didn’t satiate my curiosity. So I went back and tried on their $24.99 high-rise skinny jeans, which comes in three washes: dark wash, medium wash, and black.

I didn’t get around to any of the colored jeans or the ones with distressing or other details. To be honest, I’m not sure if they were even stocked at the Target I visited. I find the organization on the floor confusing sometimes. Some jeans are folded and stacked on shelves. Others hang from the racks. It’s easy to miss something, so I suggest taking a look online first so that you have an idea of what the options are and what you might want to keep an eye out for in store.

In my last post, I tried on the dark wash. Let’s review shall we?

A model wearing a pair of dark wash jeans. Only her legs are shown.
Universal Thread High-Rise Skinny Jeans, Dark Wash – $24.99

Here’s the stock photo for the dark wash. Colors on the website seem pretty accurate, and fitting room lighting sucks, so I thought it best to include the stock photo so you can see what the color is supposed to look like. The dark wash is very dark, almost black.

Me a petite Asian woman, trying on high-rise skinny jeans in a Target fitting room. There are two selfies side by side, one of the front and one of the back view of the jeans.
Universal Thread High-Rise Skinny Jeans, Dark Wash – $24.99

I tried on my usual denim size and one size up. Visually, they were pretty much the same, but comfort wise, the bigger size won. The fit was great all around — no gaping and no sagging in the front or the back. I’m wearing the short here and the length was perfect for petite me. I’m 5′ 3″ for reference. These jeans also come in regular and long lengths. The fiber content is 90% cotton, 7% polyester, and 3% Lycra and the jeans were made in Pakistan. The dark wash was a little rough feeling, but not distractingly so.

Model wearing mid-wash skinny jeans.
Universal Thread High-Rise Skinny, Medium Wash – $24.99

Next, I tried on the medium wash. (Someone get this model a new pair of shoes! She’s hanging off the back of these.)

Fitting room selfie wearing jeans, front wide and back/side view.
Universal Thread High-Rise Skinny, Medium Wash – $24.99

These had the same fiber content as the dark wash and were also made in Pakistan. I found the fit similar to the dark wash, so again, I decided to go up a size for comfort. I’m wearing one size up in the regular length here, which of course, is too long for shorty like me. It’s wrinkled in the knees, but maybe that’s because they’re too long. Interestingly, the fabric on this pair felt a little softer. The whiskering detail on the front is a nice touch.

Model wearing high-rise skinny jeans in black with sneakers.
Universal Thread High-Rise Skinny Jeans, Black – $24.99

Next up: the same cut of jeans in black.

Me, a petite Asian woman, trying on jeans and taking selfies. Wearing the black high-rise jeans. Image is split in half, and on one half is the front view and on the other half is the side view

These were made in Cambodia and have a different fiber content: 60% cotton, 32% rayon, and 2% Lycra. The fabric is thinner and softer than the other two pairs and I found that I didn’t need to size up in these. They’re like jeggings. They are jeggings? I mean, I really don’t know what the difference is between these and jeggings.

Universal Thread High-Rise Jeggins as worn by a model.
Universal Thread High-Rise Jeggings – $34.99

Speaking of jeggings, there exists a pair of Universal Thread high-rise jeggings, so I tried them too. They’re listed as “short” on the website, which I guess is why they look cropped on the model.

Me in the fitting room trying on jeggings. Selfie of the front and side.
Universal Thread High-Rise Jeggings – $34.99

They’re really soft. Oh, I get it now. Jeggings are super soft. Sorry if that’s obvious to you. I don’t own any jeggings, so I didn’t know! I mean, I kind of did. I’ve tried on legging pants from Uniqlo before (which totally do not work for me). Those are more like leggings whereas these Universal Thread ones retain a denim-ness about them, at least visually. Made in Vietnam, the fiber content for these is 48% cotton, 43% lyocell (a kind of rayon made out of dissolving wood pulp), 1% polyester, and 2% spandex. I tried my usual size and while it was snug to get into, it didn’t feel uncomfortable due to the softness of the fabric.

Me taking selfies in the fitting room, wearing high-rise jeggings. Front view and side view.
Universal Thread High-Rise Jeggings – $34.99

I also tried a size up and I’m torn! I’m not sure which size I’d get. They look the same in the photos, in which case I’d usually go with the larger size for comfort. Yet, I worry they’d stretch out over time and get baggy, so go with your regular size? I’m not sure why I fear the jeggings will stretch but didn’t feel the same way about the jeans. For all I know, those get baggy too, but the jeans had a tag touting the inclusion of Lycra Xtra Life, which implied they would retain their shape. Who knows, though.

Something different about the jeggings is that they have a Chitosan finish. They were manufactured via Kitotex, which I went a bit into in my last post. That process consumes less energy, water, and chemicals than conventional means. It also involves shrimp. Yes, shrimp. The high-rise jeans I tried on didn’t include any information about how they’re made, so I take this to mean they are made in the conventional, water-hogging way that most jeans are made.

I don’t need any more jeans (especially since I caved several posts ago and bought a pair of Everlane high-rise skinny jeans that were made in a LEED-certified factory). So the best thing for me to do is resist the new thing and wear the jeans I already own. The most environmentally kind thing we can do about our clothing is to consume less of it in the first place and get more wear out of what we already have. If you’re in the market for denim, I hope my info about fit has been helpful. If you own some Universal Thread denim, I’d love to hear how they worked for you and whether or not they stretched out.

I didn’t leave completely empty handed, though. I ended up loving the button down shirt (manufactured in Indonesia) that I tried with the jeans. It’s made out of a gauzy-feeling cotton with just a touch of spandex for warmer weather, something that I lacked in my wardrobe. I’ve worn this outfit three days in a row during a streak of unseasonably warm weather here in the Bay Area and I love it so much that I don’t care!

Selfie of a woman wearing a striped shirt, jeans, and sandals. Photo is taken from slightly above.
Universal Thread Tie Front Striped Button Down Shirt – $19.99 // Everlane High-Rise Skinny Jeans [review] / Vintage Sandals // Everlane Twill Zip Tote [review]

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