Alpinestars Kerry — $200
What’s Good: Hey ladies, want a flattering pair of jeans with solid safety? The Kerry’s incorporate Kevlar panels in the seats, hips and knees for abrasion resistance and removable CE armor in the knees.
What’s Bad: Removable hip pads aren’t CE-rated.
RideApart Recommended: Yes. These are genuinely flattering to the feminine figure.
Icon Strongarm 2 — $105-$115
What’s Good: They’re cheap and they do incorporate Aramid (non-name brand Kevlar) in the knees, but not the seat.
What’s Bad: The dream of the 1990s is indeed alive in Portland. These are cut like JNCOs and the more expensive “Enforcer” model features laughably bad skull and “XX” graphics on its seat.
RideApart Recommended: No. There’s really not much protection and they’re just awful to look at.
Icon Hooligan — $120
What’s Good: This is more like it. Nicely styled and equipped with Aramid panels inside the knees complete with armor, the Hooligan is available in either black or grey. The knee armor is also easily removable through external pockets, so you can pull it out when you reach the office.
What’s Bad: Outright protection is limited. We’d like to see an all-over Kevlar weave or liner or at least Kevlar in the seat and hips.
RideApart Recommended: Yes. Just keep in mind the limited protection.
Icon Women’s Hella Denim — $85
What’s Good: Stretch denim backed up by an Aramid layer in the knees.
What’s Bad: The fit is decidedly boot cut, there’s no armor and no abrasion protection in the seat.
RideApart Recommended: No. Spend up to the Rev’Its, the protection and more stylish fit is worth it.
Ugly Bros — Price Varies
What’s Good: Ugly Bros has a full line of protective jeans, most of which are made from a part-Kevlar weave and some of which include armor.
What’s Bad: While some of the styles are nicely understated and well cut, others are truly hideous. There’s a healthy selection though.
RideApart Recommended: Depends on the product in question. One thing we’d consider is availability, returns and things like that. Without a physical store presence in the U.S., getting the right size could be a hassle.
What’s Good: Made from abrasion resistant Schoeller Dynatec fabric, the Revolutions are lined with a wind/waterproof, breathable membrane. D3O armor is included for the hips and knees.
What’s Bad: Rokker is a Swiss company and its styling appears rooted in the 1990s European techno scene. If you’re a Russian gangster or middle-aged male from East Germany with spikey blonde hair, you’ll love them. If you live in America and have eyes, you’ll assume they’re a bad joke.
RideApart Recommended: No. These have the best ingredients of any product here, but the worst when it comes to looks. Sigh.
Rokker Original — $470
What’s Good: A basic denim jean lined with the high-tech Shoeller Dynatec fabric.
What’s Bad: Again, the styling is just going be love it or hate it. No bones about it, we hate it.
RideApart Recommended: No. While the Schoeller fabric will justify the huge premium to the kind of people who really geek out on materials technology, we’d also guess those same people haven’t yet invented a time machine to travel forward from the 1990s, then take these jeans back to their rightful time in fashion.
Rokker Red Selvage — $500
What’s Good: Again, the Schoeller Dynatec liner will provide peerless abrasion resistance.
What’s Bad: You have eyes, you tell us. We’re guessing they misspelled “selvedge” because these are just regular, stonewashed denim jeans.
RideApart Recommended: Would you pay $500 to look like the modern day Axel Rose? Neither would we.
Draggin’ Jeans — Price Varies
What’s Good: The original Kevlar riding jeans are available in a variety of styles with varying degrees of protection from the anti-abrasion liner.
What’s Bad: Draggin’ has failed to keep up with the pace of advancement in a segment it invented. Competitors now offer better protection and better style — an area in which this brand has always lagged.
RideApart Recommended: No. The market has moved on.
Iron Heart 21oz — $365+
What’s Good: Ultra heavyweight denim delivers the strength and durability denim has always been rumored to be capable of without becoming unbearably stiff or thick. Iron Heart’s denim is even stronger than its weight would suggest thanks to its ultra-long Zimbabwe cotton fibers.
What’s Bad: Plan on a break-in period of 6 months or more before they become truly comfortable.
RideApart Recommended: Yes. As fashionable as Deth Killers and as safe, too.
What is your favorite brand when it comes to riding jeans? Which jeans do you advise against and which do you recommend?