Women sacrifice so much for fashion. Don’t believe me? Consider, then the spike heeled shoes that were recently used as running shoes by leading lady Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard), the no-nonsense corporate head and manager of Jurassic World’s dinosaur park. Believe me, if I were going to run away from a dinosaur, I would much rather be sporting my old, faithful Brooks running shoes rather than a pair of sky high Manolo Blahnik’s regardless of how fabulous they look. You know I am right but we aren’t here to talk about shoes. Nope, we are here to look at the ‘other’ hidden danger lurking in your closet. Your very best friend, whether for club nights or weekend picnics in the park, the friend that has been with you through thick, thin, and even PMS. Yes, that’s right, we’re here to talk about your skinny jeans.
Skinny jeans do for women what onesies do for babies. They fit snuggly on any body type and streamline any outfit. They are benignly elastic, surprisingly democratic, and willing and able to stretch comfortably to cover all shapes and social groups. Famous skinny jean aficionados include Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Moss, Nigella Lawson, Michelle Obama, Pussy Riot, and Jane Shepherdson. Studies show that skinny jean wearers are happier, more confident, and less likely to induce depression than other fashion choices. Oddly enough, that same research shows that skinny jean wearers also prefer an aisle seat when flying (maybe this is to allow for better restroom access due to constant compression of the bladder?). Honestly, though, skinny jeans are much more wearable than mom-jeans as they offer more give and more forgiveness.
If skinny jeans are so great, though, how can they possibly pose a danger? Recently, a 35-year-old woman had to be cut out of her jeans after helping a family member pack up cupboards for a move. Apparently, the victim had spent several hours crouched down and stooped over with her jeans compressing her calves. Doctors believe that this compression led to a pretty significant case of compartment syndrome. On her way home, her feet quit working correctly causing her to trip and fall. She was unable to get back up and her skinny jeans left her lying alone and desperate while waiting for help to find her. Let me repeat that for you, she was alone and unable to stand, lying on the pavement outside of her home, waiting for someone to find her. I cannot imagine the anxiety and stress this would have caused not to mention the excruciating pain she must have been experiencing. Clothing is supposed to make you feel confident and happy, not make you stressed, depressed, and helpless on the ground.
Fortunately, she was rescued and emergency personnel were able to cut her out of the offending jeans. She was treated with intravenous fluids and was able to regain her ability to walk after several days. Doctors assured her that the incident was a very rare case but did use this incident as an opportunity to highlight two potential dangers of skinny jeans. First, skinny jeans slightly raise the risk of developing compartmental syndrome. To avoid this, change positions frequently. Second, skinny jeans slightly raise the risk of developing bacterial vaginosis, a mild infection of the vagina. To prevent this, maintain good personal hygiene and alternate between tight clothing and looser apparel.
Most importantly, though, keep in mind that developing compartmental syndrome from wearing skinny jeans is extremely rare. This particular fashion style has been around for decades and this is the only case like this that I can remember. Have fun with your fashion and don’t let freak occurrences lead to disproportionate anxiety. After all, if the Duchess of Cambridge can rock skinny jeans, you can too!