Monday, January 18, 2010

Tip: How to take care of your jeans

Jeans. We all own them, but do you really know how to take care of them? A few simple tips will keep your jeans looking (old, new, distressed, stretchy, saggy, insert your jeans type here) so that you can wear them for years to come.

1. Do not wash every single time you wear your jeans. Sound gross? It's true -- denim was not made to be washed after each and every wear. The longer you can go between washes, the more likely your jeans will stretch and mold to your shape. Consider this -- if you buy raw denim, it's recommended you go six months without washing. Yuck. The only caveat to this is if your jeans are stretchy jeans. Stretch jeans need to be washed after one or two wears, simply because they lose their shape.

2. When washing your jeans, turn them inside out. This will help preserve the color, and detail work on the pockets, etc. Speaking of pockets, check them for gum, change, bar napkins with phone numbers...

3. Cold water. 'Nuff said.

4. If you are concerned about dark denim color bleed, add a cup of white vinegar to the wash. I promise you won't smell like vinegar when you wear your jeans.  Adding vinegar should also stop them from leaving those annoying blue stains on your skin. (As a note, some experts recommend running an empty machine with vinegar BEFORE you wash your jeans, since the vinegar will clean the soap scum from the machine. The scum could wind up on your jeans...which would not be pretty.)

5. Dryers are not your friend. Do not put your jeans in the dryer, instead let them air dry. Dryers cause jeans to shrink, leading to unhappiness when they won't fit. Instead, hang using a pants hanger, and smooth out any creases. If you have stretch jeans, disregard the previous statement and throw them in the dryer. Leave them in for about 40 minutes then take them out to finish by air drying.

6. Once your jeans are fully dry, they'll be crunchy and stiff. Toss them in a low warm dryer for 3-5 minutes to shake the stiffness out. If you leave them in longer, they'll shrink, and you'll be forced to do Jeans Aerobics.

Considering I've spent $100 or more on jeans, I swear by these tips. I hope they work for you too!

DISCLAIMER: I am not a trained laundry professional. I'm not even fond of laundry.

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