Few denim styles are trickier to nail than the mom jean. The perfect pair can make you into a Man Repeller, but while a less-than-ideal fit makes you a walking SNL skit.

Hence why it took me a couple years to cave into my desire to pair those barely taped, high-waisted, stone-washed jeans with a pair of badass ankle boots. And even after I started my search, it took me years to find The Ones. I quickly discovered that my athletic build doesn’t generally translate to making that particular silhouette look awesome; the denim tends to catch on my calves and bunch at the knees. And then there’s the pancake ass…if they even fit over my hips.

Still, I was determined to OWN that look, so I tried on pair after pair, learning a little bit with each fail. I quickly discovered that 100% cotton was key, as any jeans in that cut would have to start off snug and loosen to fit my body perfectly. Also, I found that I needed the slightest bit of distressing to break up the silhouette and add the cool factor I was craving.

Finally, I stumbled upon the AGOLDE Jamie cut. (Which I'm wearing above) With minimal distressing, a vintage-style light wash, a button fly and a subtle taper that leaves room for those of us who walk on actual legs (as opposed to stilts), they checked all the boxes. Also, they ring up at less than $160, putting them on the more affordable side of the premium denim spectrum. And the best part: they don’t make me feel like Tina Fey planting tulips.

Of course, every body is different. So if those don't work for you, these similar pairs by Levi's and Madewell are both equally covetable.