It is said that no two types of denim are similar, each has its own personality and voice. For every denim head, the thrill of hunting for the perfect pair of jeans lies in the details, the innovative washes and the fits. While we often invest in high quality, well-made denim products, we tend to overlook the importance of maintaining them. Here are a few handy tips to take care of your denim:
The cardinal rule of thumb is to wear your denim often and wash them sparingly. In fact, denimologists recommend never washing them. The frequency with which you wash your jeans directly impacts the amount of indigo that leaches out of them over time This is especially true for raw denim as you want the rugged look to sustain for a longer period of time.
If it has been a few weeks of constant wear, or you’ve got a significant stain, turn them inside out and wash with similar shades to stop pigment bleeding.
If you are washing your jeans for the first time, toss in two spoonfuls of salt to help set the dye.
If you are using a washing machine, remember to wash with cold water, and use only a small quantity of detergent.
Or even better, wash your denim by hand. Fill a sink with cold water and add a drop of mild detergent. Turn your jeans inside out and place them in the water without scrubbing. Rinse with cold water in an hour and simply hang to dry.
Air drying your denim indoors will help preserve the colour of the indigo dye. Avoid drying in the Sun, as it bleaches the denim. After drying, your jeans tend to become stiff, but they should soften naturally when worn for a day.
Tumble dry your denim only if you want to shrink them. However, tumble drying often causes the formation of lint and pilling, which weakens the fabric.
Do not bleach your denim. Not only will it mess with the colour, but it could also deteriorate the yarn. Instead, let the stains dry and, if it’s food, scrape off any residue with your finger, before spot cleaning it.
Don’t dry clean your denim. All those chemicals can weaken the fabric and the result is a shiny finish, which looks terrible on denim.
A great way to get rid of odours is to steam your denim. Remember to use the steam iron without directly placing it on the fabric, as this can alter the original finish. Or you can stick them in the oven or freezer. Crazy as it sounds, both methods help getting rid of any odour causing bacteria.
Buying denim that’s made to last, and caring for it properly, can increase its lifespan. If denim is your way of life, then you owe it to yourself to make your favourite pair last that long. Treat your denim right and it will surely treat you well.