The Levi’s ‘Ex-Girlfriend Jean,’ a so-called “tribute” to your ex-girlfriend, or a way to prevent your new girlfriend from getting pregnant by reducing sperm count – which is it?

Previously known as hipster jeans and rocker jeans, this trend just keeps getting skinnier.  Levis’ new ‘Ex-Girlfriend Jean’ is a so-called tribute to your ex-girlfriend, the jeans she had that you secretly wanted. Maybe he tried them out on the sly and checked out his  derrier while she was in the shower, or maybe he just envied the way she swaggered in those denim leggings; now he can have a pair of his own.  But these jeans aren’t only controversial in style, could they actually be decreasing the sperm count of those that dare to wear?

Some say they were created in reaction to the low-slung, baggy ‘boyfriend jean,’ which filled the pages of last years fashion magazines, while others are saying these almost-too-tight-to-move ‘Ex-Girlfriend Jeans’ are more than just a dot on the fashion timeline. The ‘Ex-Girlfriend Jean’ has caused such a media frenzy that even Stephen Colbert has used “The Colbert Report” to discuss what he calls the “skinnification of the American jeanscape.” Ellen DeGeneres took to her show to have a staff member try on the jeans for her audience. Before leaving the stage she instructed her co-worker, “Go take those off so you can have more kids.”

Is it true that that these jeans could actually be hindering the fertility of those brave (or crazy) enough to wear them? Bloggers and responders all over the web have insisted that these jeans could actually reduce sperm count and fertility due to everything from overheating of the testicles to just plan testicle trauma. But what do medical professionals have to say about the matter?

Many lifestyle and biological factors can temporarily affect sperm production, including intense cycling, extreme heat exposure, ill-fitting underwear, steroid use, and vericocele. However male fertility is not just a matter of sperm count; other factors like motility and morphology of sperm also play a role in this important function. In order to eliminate all of these male fertility obstacles, a healthy, balanced, low-stress lifestyle is essential. 

While the “Ex-Girlfriend Jean” could fall under the category of “ill-fitting underwear,” it’s probably not necessary to trade in your dirty little secret in favor of having children some day. If you are struggling with male fertility, however, in addition to assessing the obstacles listed above, consider giving yourself some breathing room and a break from the “Ex-Girlfriend Jean.”