When it comes to caring for jeans, advice is almost as varied as that of caring for a newborn baby. Every information source seems to have their own ideas about taking care of something this precious. A recent article on Refinery29 suggests washing your jeans after every wear. We could hear denim heads across the globe shrieking and clinging to their precious unwashed raw selvedge. At Denim Therapy, we suggest only laundering your jeans (properly—which means not always in a washing machine) when needed. See below for our tips on cleaning denim…
Wash your jeans as little as possible. You only need to wash them if an odor or stain develops (and remember, stains can be spot-treated). When you do wash them, do so individually in a cold wash to prevent bleeding & shrinking and use a gentle detergent like Woolite. Always air dry your jeans.
To prevent dye transfer during washing, wash them once inside-out in hot water to run the “loose” dye, and then wash them again using half a cup of vinegar to set the color. Some dye may still run after this, depending on the jeans, so follow the instructions on the label of your jeans to avoid a dramatic change in appearance after washing.
“Don’t wash your jeans!”
We hear it over and over, and many of us abide by this denim-addict’s rule of thumb when it comes to letting denim take its shape around your figure, and letting wear happen naturally. But the fact is, after a certain period of time, you’re going to want to remove odors, dirt, and even dead skin cells (yep, their final resting place is your jeans). Freezing denim removes odor to some extent, but if you’ve decided it’s time to take action with *gulp* water… there’s a right way to do it.
Check out this awesome tutorial on washing raw denim from Park & Bond (and visit the original to see their informative graphics).
Step 1: Fill a sink, tub, bucket or other jean-sized vessel with lukewarm water and a small amount of ultra-mild detergent. Woolite Dark is a good bet, but it’s very concentrated, so start with just a couple of teaspoons. Take a deep breath, ignore the anticipated slights from the hip police running through your mind, and put your smelly-ass jeans in the tub. Make sure they’re fully submerged (this may require you to weigh them down).
Step 2: Soak them for about an hour, giving them a stir half way through to loosen any dirt that’s worked its way into the denim.
Step 3: Remove the jeans, drain the tub (of course), and rinse them thoroughly with cold water to remove detergent residue. Roll them up in a dry towel that you don’t mind staining blue to remove some moisture.
Step 4: Hang them out to dry. (Note: Make sure you hang them in a place that has good air movement, as you don’t want your jeans to mildew. Also, take care to hang them somewhere that won’t be ruined by a steady flow of indigo-infused water.) Do not tumble dry, as all that heat will undo your good work. Once your jeans are dry, pull them on and proceed to beat the hell out of ‘em till they need a bath again.
Original tutorial via Park & Bond.
Tags: denim care, freezing denim, how to wash denim, raw denim, should i wash my jeans, washing raw denim
CEO and Founder of Apartment Therapy, Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan approaches the “myths” of freezing raw denim (and realizes it really works). He uses a pair of G-Star Raw black jeans, claiming that this is the most money he has ever spent on denim.
“When I first started freezing my jeans,” he comments, “I ran into a lot of resistance at home. Not only because they found it ridicilous but they also didn’t like that the freezer was full of pants.”
1. Everybody’s doing it.
2. It’s a quick process. Lay jeans flat, empty pockets, fold, stick in an air tight back, and put them in the freezer overnight.
3. Denim freezing folks should “be sensitive”. Freezing jeans takes up room.
4. Freezing jeans reduces the bacteria levels substantially. So, it seems to work.
Check out the step-by-step video to learn exactly how it’s done.
Tags: apartment therapy, freezing denim, freezing jeans, how-to, Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan, raw denim, Video