Few other garments have enjoyed the same kind of commodification as have blue jeans. When Jacob W. Davis originally invented them in partnership with Levi Strauss & Co, he intended for them to be a hard-wearing work pant for use by prospectors digging for gold. However, once mainstream fashion caught on to of the likes of Brando and Dean sporting some denim, jeans quickly became elevated to a stylish piece of ‘in’ apparel. And the thing is — since that time, jeans have only continued rise in popularity. In fact, the global denim market value reached some $110 billion in 2020 after experiencing a $15 billion increase from the year prior (a growth that was projected to take four years). Suffice to say, people can’t get enough of their jeans.
But along with such commercial success has come a supply chain with rife with inferior exports. For though most high quality jeans used to be crafted in the United States, garment makers have been steadily taking their production overseas in order to cut down on their production costs. And it’s a shame, because it’s lead to the widespread closure of our domestic denim mills and an increasing reliance on selvedge sourced from Japan (not that there’s anything inherently wrong with Japanese denim). However, in order to honor the history of American jeans manufacturing, we’ve done our best to only consider those options that are spun and sewn right here in the USA. As it turns out, there are quite a few brands who are looking to do just that. So have a read and see what we’ve picked for the best American made jeans for men.
Flint And Tinder Pacific Wash Jeans
Although most American denim makes for some pretty costly clothing, this pair of jeans from Flint and Tinder is an exception to the rule. At just $90, they’re comparable in price with many imported alternatives. However, because of their premium Cone Mills fabric, they’ll last for far longer and wear better throughout their lifetime. Hand-washed for a super soft feel and finished off with some herringbone pocketing and antique metal buttons, these jeans prove that you don’t have to break the bank in order to score some high-quality homegrown denim.
Left Field NYC Atlas Cone Zipper Fly American Classic
Frustrated with the country’s overwhelming departure from domestic manufacturing, Christian McCann founded Left Field back in 1998 in order to bring stylish American-made clothing back to mainstream menswear. At the time, the company was little more than a side project based out of small New York apartments and McCann’s own truck, but over the years it’s grown into one of the industry’s premier purveyors of vintage-inspired apparel. These jeans are a case in point, combining a slightly tapered greaser-like fit with a 13oz rinsed indigo denim construction and some bandana pocket bags.
American Giant Dakota Straight
American Giant is a brand based on the principle that keeping supply chains local is critical to the overall success of our communities. Therefore, each and every one of their products are 100% American sourced and spun, sometimes crossing the country but never leaving its shores. When it comes to the Dakota Straight jeans, you’ll find that they were first woven in Trion, Georgia and then flown to Los Angeles, California for the finishing touch. Made from a blend of cotton, polyester, and just a little bit of spandex for stretch, they’ll be comfortable to wear from day one.
Stovall & Young The Young Copper
Like all great business ventures, Stovall & Young started with a pair of best friends and a dream. However, Sean Patrick Stovall and Chris Young weren’t after some innovative new product or fleeting fashion trend; rather, they just wanted clothing that was made as it was advertised on the label. In practice, this means that this pair of jeans are exactly as they appear, with some Greensboro-sourced White Oak Cone raw denim, a leather patch made in Portland, and a final construction in San Francisco. To put it another way — these aren’t just American-made; they’re a true interstate effort.
Taylor Stitch The Democratic Cone Mills Reserve Selvedge
San Francisco’s Taylor Stitch is one garment manufacturer that comes well-steeped in American values, what with its strict adherence to quality and its commitment to keeping wild spaces wild. As such, it should come as no surprise that their Democratic Jeans made the cut, for they embody everything that you’d want out of your denim. Crafted from 100% deadstock Cone Mills selvedge, they come complimented by a slightly shaped fit, some copper buttons and shanks, and some custom San Francisco map printing for the pockets. Better move fast though — once these bad boys are gone, they’re gone for good.
Railcar Unsanforized 9oz American
Ask anyone on the street and they’re likely to tell you that the American Dream is dead, but with Railcar Fine Goods you’ll find that it’s alive and well. That’s because it was born out of Steven Dang’s desire for hard-hitting workwear, with him balancing a day shift at the metro alongside late nights getting Railcar up and running. Equal parts story and substance, they’re made from robust 9oz unsanforized denim (again from Cone Mills), meaning they’ll be with you for years to come and wear in with their own unique fade and fit all the while.
The Rising Sun Blacksmith 15oz Jean
If you’re after a pair of jeans bleeding with classic 1900s style, it doesn’t get much better than this pair from Los Angeles-based The Rising Sun. As handsome as they are hard-wearing, they combine an iconic buckle-back silhouette with a hefty 15oz indigo selvedge construction. And that’s not all — elsewhere, you’ll find such made-to-last details as some reinforced acorn-back pockets, heavy-duty lining, and a set of double-prong copper clinch rivets. All that is to say: it’s not for nothing that The Rising Sun decided to name this particular pair of jeans ‘Blacksmith’ — they’re about as durable as they come.
Imogene + Willie Charlie Lawrence
When Matt and Carrie Eddmenson first founded Imogene + Willie back in 2008, they were broke, desperate, and doubting whether their business would even take off. In spite of their initial uncertainty, the pair stayed true to their roots and committed themselves to producing the best-wearing, longest-lasting jeans they could. Some 13 years later, Imogene + Willie is still doing its thing, and it’s for good reason that the brand has made it. For instance, the Charlie Lawrence features a 14oz premium denim fabric with a bit of added elastane to improve the fit and finish. What results is a pair of jeans that look as if you’d worn them for years and are just as comfortable from day one.
Raleigh Denim Workshop Alexander 319 Wash
Headquartered right in heart of North Carolina’s capital city, Raleigh Denim Workshop honors the history of domestic manufacturing by employing the exact same techniques as those traditionally used to make American denim. So, in addition to retrofitting a once-closed workshop and restarting some long-abandoned looms, Sarah Yarborough and Victor Lytvinenko also consulted former industry workers in order to fine-tune their process. When it comes to their Alexander 319 jeans, you’ll find that the wash comes chock full of Cone Mills character and the fit is second to none. Oh, and as an added bonus, every pair comes signed on the interior of the front pockets in recognition of those who crafted them.
Freenote Cloth Trabuco Classic Straight 15oz
Freenote Cloth may have been started in 2013, but everything about the San Juan Capistrano-based brand oozes classic Americana, from its founding by brothers Matt and Andrew Brodrick to the timeless style of its products. Their Trabuco Classic Straight jeans are no exception, for they pair a rugged 15oz fabric with an elongated rise and some added room through the hips, a combination that’s made to work hard and wear easy. And when you consider that they come finished with some double-needle accents, Japanese herringbone pocket bags, as well as some custom rivets and button tacks, they more than look the part, too.
Glenn’s Denim GD110 Slim Tapered Washed 13oz Selvedge
Where most other garment manufacturers rely on the collective effort of a well-coordinated team, Glenn’s Denim is the product of just one man — Glenn Liburd — and his obsession with denim. Having worked in the industry for some 30 years designing and producing jeans behind the scenes, Liburd subsequently curated his own collection through Brooklyn Tailors in order to showcase his experience. When it comes to the GD110, you’ll find that they offer a mid-rise with a slim cut and a tapered leg reminiscent of ’70s and ’80s counterculture style. And because they come pre-washed and shrunk, they’re already well on their way to a perfect, broken-in fit and fade.
Tobacco Archetype Riding Jeans
For those who want to stay safe on the bike but aren’t a fan of the futuristic sci-fi aesthetic that comes with most protective pants, these Archetype Riding Jeans from Tobacco Motorwear will make for a welcome alternative. That’s because they pair some premium Cone Mills denim with a Comfort Controlled Lining, ensuring that you look the part while saving your legs from road rash in the event of a spill. And the best part is — courtesy of their caballo-seam construction, you won’t even be able to notice the added reinforcement. So whether you’re donning them for a day of riding or simply just rocking them around town, these jeans have your back.
The 18 Best Men’s Selvedge Denim Jeans
While many of the picks we’ve featured in this guide are made from selvedge denim, we’ve barely scratched the surface of the available options. If you’re looking for some extra rugged jeans with a bit of subtle added style, be sure to check out our guide to the best men’s selvedge denim jeans.
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