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New ad for women’s jeans raises the bar for marketing bike products

Posted by on March 11th, 2015 at 4:14 pm

We shared the news in this week’s Monday Roundup that Levi’s has just launched some new fits, including a line for women, of their Commuter brand jeans. The jeans are designed for bike transportation with high-rise waists, skinny legs and slightly reflective seams.

And befitting a clothing line that’s built for everyday riding, the video they launched today bursts through a dozen dull stereotypes about both biking and about marketing women’s bike products.

Since our friend Jessica Roberts of Alta Planning + Design shared the video on Twitter, we’ve seen some warm reviews from Portlanders we respect:

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And a couple interesting thoughts from a prominent Los Angeles bike shop:

“At first I was a little turned off by how fast & young it skewed – didn’t feel like it was for me,” adds Roberts, 39. “But then I realized that’s what fashion does. From that perspective, it’s probably quite effective in setting up urban biking as a cultural aspiration/norm.”

To me (who is, admittedly, a white dude who already wears jeans on almost every bike trip) there’s a lot to like here. From my perspective, the ad’s celebration of little moments is stylish but not formal, practical but not pedantic, attractive but not sexual, familiar but not boring.

There are lots of different kinds of bikes. One of them is on a freaking bus rack.

There’s even rain.

What do you think?

NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. BikePortland is an inclusive company with no tolerance for discrimination or harassment including expressions of racism, sexism, homophobia, or xenophobia. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

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Cheif
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Cheif

I like some of the levis commuter line but ffs not everybody wants skinny jeans. I’m athletically proportioned, ride daily, and I was happy to see that they introduced a wider leg design.. until I got them and put them on. They were the skinniest jegging type pant I have ever attempted. I like the material, hate the cut. Love my commuter jacket though.

Barb & Max
Guest
Barb & Max

Radical. “higher back for more coverage” and reflectivity PLUS – be still my heart – dirt repelling??? did they really say that? Radical. Very urban, this ad will only play in some very hip markets (either coast). I like the image of capable competent young women going fast.

Mossby Pomegranate
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Mossby Pomegranate

This outta really make the helmet haters happy.

JV
Guest
JV

Oh my! – people enjoying themselves on bicycles without helmets. Someone call the concern police!

In all seriousness, I would buy pants that looked like jeans but were water/dirt repellent. A seriously good idea.

ethan
Guest
ethan

This is great 🙂 I love the variety of different scenarios, especially the bus bike rack! This looks like a really well thought out product and ad. I don’t have any brand loyalty for clothing (I pretty much only buy secondhand), but I’m much more likely to buy Levi now for anything I have / want to buy new.

Christopher Sanderson
Guest

I like the ad – a lot. However, I doubt that Carhartt is going to release an activewear pant for contractors on bikes.

Alexis
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Alexis

Does anyone know if they carry these in the NW retail location? Because there’s no flipping way I’m spending $118 on jeans that I can’t try on first.

John Liu
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John Liu

That is a nice ad. Fun, energetic, normal looking people, living in the city and riding bikes.

soren
Guest

Some nice looking clothes, bikes, and moves. That tunnel scene was almost Brunelle-esque…

Mike
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Mike

Alexis
Does anyone know if they carry these in the NW retail location? Because there’s no flipping way I’m spending $118 on jeans that I can’t try on first.
Recommended 0

Yes, they sell them in the NW location. No, they don’t repel water very well. They’ll spray some water on them in front of you in the store to demonstrate, but I promise you’ll be disappointed with the real-world performance.

spencer
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spencer

they’re stretchy jeans, not wunderpants. they’re awesome for pedaling however. i’m stoked on mine, and they fit bike racer legs.

John Liu
Guest
John Liu

I have a couple pairs of the original commuter jeans. I’m not sure if my comments apply to the current jeans, but here goes.
– Reasonably comfortable to ride in. Has gusset crotch, so no central raised seam grinding between you and the saddle. Adequately stretchy.
– The material is slightly water repellent. Maybe about as much as a nylon windbreaker. So, better than standard cotton denim which is basically a sponge, but not close to real rain pants.
– Wish they’d kept the pocket on the rear waistband.

Jim Lee
Guest
Jim Lee

Denim trousers are ugly, ill-fitting, uncomfortable, short-lived gold miners pants from the 19th century.

How they ever came to be considered “stylish” is the great mystery of the 20th century, along with nuclear fission.

Did I say “ugly?”

jonathan
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jonathan

Gladys on Alberta is selling these. A great shop!

Rebecca
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Rebecca

Great ad. I like that it makes cycling around the city look as badass and exhilarating as it feels. I especially like that it shows normal women riding fast, and riding normal commuter bikes.

I feel like a lot of the marketing material promoting “the cycling lifestyle” to women tends to feature gentle, smiling feathers in sundresses riding pastel beach cruisers with flowers in the front basket. Which is awesome too, it just doesn’t reflect how I or my friends get to work.

I wrote to levis last year to express disappointment that they’d only introduced a dude’s line. Think I owe them a follow up kudos note.

was carless
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was carless

I own two pairs of these jeans (for men), and I love them. They changed the cut and have several different types of materials (some stretchier, lighter and heavier fabrics) that are great on and off the saddle. Now, I’m a white guy, but think the commercial is great – it portrays practical biking and women in a really good light.

Nutcase Helmets
Guest

We are psyched to be launching our new Metroride commuter helmet alongside Levi’s Women’s Commuter Jeans.

Check out the contest Leah is running on Gladys Bikes Instagram to win a Metroride helmet or custom Levi’s x Brooks Cambium saddle! #ThisIsWhatACommuterLooksLike

BIKELEPTIC
Guest

I think it is definitely perfectly geared towards its audience of 16 – 29 year old, primarily women urban, chic, 20k+, possible cyclists. And if anyone outside their target audience is drawn to them than bonus.

What the bike industry is missing are pants made for people with quads. Like people that have their bodysize double in their quads. Because all the high rise in the world can’t help when you have to size up from a 32″ to a 38″ because you can’t get the pantleg over your thighs – and they’re no longer skinny jeans. (Obviously not complaining about me) This is not individualized to just cycling, but any sports industry where people actually use their legs. What kind of pants to people wear? Shorts?

Rita
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Rita

I personally, am NOT a fan of jeans for cycling. Commuter brand or otherwise. They’re just too hot and not comfy/don’t move.
Doesn’t help either that I am short(er) and more athletic – so skinny jeans and me, def don’t get along.

I do however, LOVE the new Giro NEW ROAD Mobility Pant
http://www.giro.com/us_en/products/women/apparel/bottoms/mobility-pant.html

So much, I ended up buying TWO pair! They breathe, they move when I move. They have a gusseted crotch (which is good for cycling clothes FYI) and they actually even made me feel hopeful that the cycling community is hearing the requests of many (female) riders and starting to make changes to their urban apparel for the better!

Elliott
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Elliott

All i see is no bike lights.