Don’t Freeze: What to Wear With Your Jeans in Cold Weather

A friend of mine came out to New York from California recently, and was commenting about the unbearable cold. It’s been a cold winter yes, but when I saw her wearing a thin cotton sweater, jeans, trench coat with no scarf and leather boots it dawned on me that not everyone knows how to dress for these days! It’s not a natural act… heck, I’ve spent the last three winters in the super cold and I don’t get it sometimes.

If you live on the west coast, visiting the East, or even going up to the mountains can be a real treat, really. I have learned to love snowy days! Don’t be intimidated by the cold! The thing is, you don’t have to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe, but you do have to have some key pieces you might already have.

Cashmere Socks: Wool socks also work in super cold temperatures. I just like cashmere socks because they’re so soft and cozy. It’s been totally worth it to invest in a few pairs, as they’re so nice to wear, even if around the house. Cashmere socks are so much warmer than cotton or synthetic fibered socks and they are the most luxurious bits of coziness you can put on your feet. I love the Kiki de Montparnasse over the knee cashmere socks with the red seem in the back.

Warm Tights: Growing up in Southern California, I thought warm tights were just the opaque ones. As a woman in New York, I can tell you opaque tights help, but they don’t keep you warm like tights specially made for cold weather. For some reason I never got into thermal underwear, mostly because it’s too bulky, especially with skinny jeans. A good pair of tights does just fine and you can find for an affordable price. The Plush Fleece Lined Tights for $35 have gotten great reviews for keeping warm without the bulk. I also have a pair of wool tights and a pair of cashmere tights that also work on even the coldest of days.

Cold Weather Boots: Depending on how often you’re going to be in the cold… it might be worth it to invest in a pair of snow boots, or even a pair of shearling lined boots. TIP: Make sure the lining covers your toes…that’s the most important part! There are more options than Uggs, like the Elizabeth and James Wild Combat Boots, that don’t even look lined from the outside. Hunter Boots make some great options as well with their interchangeable liners to help keep you dry and warm.

So that’s what you’d wear with your jeans to keep you warm, on the bottom half anyway. Coats and sweaters will have to come in another post!

What are some of your tricks in keeping stylish and warm in the dead of winter?



  1. January 13, 2011 / 8:16 am

    What a great post. Having lived in Cleveland, Ohio all my life, I have learned that layering is the key to staying warm in the freezing cold! I use the same tips you described above, although I stick with wool socks instead of cashmere. (I might have to remedy that as I love the Kiki de Montparnasse socks you selected for this post!).

    Tights are always a much, and the Plush tights you listed here are a life saver!

    Scarves and gloves are a must as well… couldn’t survive without them!

  2. January 13, 2011 / 10:15 am

    oh i never knew about these fleece lined tights! thanks so much for the tips! much needed for a TX girl who travels to cold-weather states every now and then. 🙂

    cute and little

  3. Jennine
    January 13, 2011 / 10:19 am

    @beautifully invisible … oh yeah, i had to learn the hard way.. also to be careful not to layer too much with socks and tights, as they cause circulation issues and colder feet! those kiki socks are amaze arent they?
    @kileen… yeah, i had no idea until i learned the hard way… it’s even worse when you visit from a warmer place, you can’t take chances. but in reality, i live in ny, and i can live with no tights under my jeans… for short period s of time..but only just this year. heck, in sf i wore tights under my jeans all winter..

  4. January 13, 2011 / 11:23 am

    Long underwear! Ugly but fantastic.

    And hunting socks. I have some by a company called 40 below and they are SO warm.

  5. January 13, 2011 / 1:42 pm

    brrr! I love the cold, great advice though on keeping warm under jeans.

    Build a jean thats made for you body. Design your custom denim right now.

  6. Donatella
    January 14, 2011 / 5:42 am

    wearing most of the time skinny pants or skinny jeans, some tights aren’t working because they create too much friction with the pants’ fabric.
    my trick is : silk.
    it’s soft, barely there, and keep warm.
    so i bought a whole series of Undersilk long johns, shirts, tank tops… and i’ll leave long enough in this cold to see another spring and summer!

  7. January 14, 2011 / 7:07 pm

    being a NY native, I wear tights under my jeans all winter, plus warm socks. makes a huge difference!

  8. Paula
    January 24, 2011 / 4:30 pm

    Ok – there is something I really don’t get – coming from someone who lived most of her life in a warm climate but now lives in a cold one. How do you comfortably fit tights under tight fitting skinnys and/or form fitting jeans for that matter???

  9. Denise
    February 6, 2011 / 10:56 am

    To answer Paula, my trick for fitting tights under close fitting jeans is this: I don’t actually wear tights. I choose a slick underlayer such as Flexees pantliner. The jeans glide right over these! There are other manufacturers, too — just make sure the underlayer is slick. If it looks shiny in the package this is a start, but you have to actually feel the fabric to judge if the underlayer has that slide and glide quality.

  10. July 16, 2013 / 1:45 am

    Thanks for this post, i’m visiting NYC from Sydney Australia in December so don’t really have an idea about the cold.
    I think it may be hard to find some of the items mentioned until I get there, so any tips on where to go for quick shopping?
    Also being there for new years and going out on other nights just wondering do girls always wear jeans, are leggings and a dress (with a coat etc. as well) out of the question or will I freeze ?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *