Arguably the garment that most defines USA style, jeans have been clothing Americans ever since Levi Strauss ordered his first consignment of denim. Blue jeans started out as unpretentious and tough work clothing for men and women, but these days they are a fashion phenomenon. Prestigious designers offer their own versions and cuts, while classic brands and styles of jeans have stood the test of time. Versatility, comfort and resilience remain the key elements in the continued success of jeans.
Any Questions? The Ultimate Jeans Care Guide
For those of you who hate doing laundry, we have some good news. You don’t have to wash your jeans—at least not often.
When it is time to give them a wash, do you know the proper way to do so? It isn’t as simple as tossing them in the washing machine. After you’ve found your perfect pair, we’re answering all of your denim care questions:
How should I wash my jeans?
By hand is the best way to go. Use your sink and liquid detergent to clean treated jeans, then allow them to air dry inside-out, lying flat down or hanging on a clothesline. For raw jeans, add 2 cups of white vinegar to a shallow amount of water in the bathtub and soak for an hour before laying them out to dry. If you must use a washing machine, make sure to use the gentle cycle and cold water, then dry inside-out at a low heat to avoid shrinkage.
When should I wash my jeans?
Depends on the denim type. Raw denim jeans should be washed as little as possible so they don’t lose their luster, approximately every 4-8 months. The only time you should wash treated denim is when there are stains that can’t be removed with a spot treatment or when you feel like they really need it every few months.
But won’t they smell?
Stick them in the freezer or the oven—seriously. The cold and heat both kill odor-causing bacteria in between washes. Seal your jeans in a plastic bag and freeze them for up to two days. For a quicker fix, just bake them. Preheat your oven to 400°, then reduce to 175°. Place your folded jeans directly on the rack and cook for 2 minutes. Then enjoy!
Is there a way to stop jeans from fading?
White vinegar is not only a natural detergent, it sets the dye of raw denim jeans, as well. This is another reason why the soaking wash method gets major points. For treated dark jeans, wash them in cold water before wearing them for the first time to help them maintain that true blue state.
Do right by your denim jeans. The better you take care of them, the better they’ll make you look.