Mrs. Anju Tulshyan(Asst. Professor)

Co –author: Ms. Misba Turk (Undergraduate Student)

Department of Textiles & Apparel Designing

S.V.T. College of Home Science (Autonomous)

S.N.D.T Women’s University

Juhu, Mumbai -400049


Denim fashion rarely fades out; it is a perspective of a ‘Fashion       Garment’. There is a wide variety of different denim fabrics like Vintage denim,    Black Denim, Khadi Denim and many others. As there are different fabrics there are different washes given to create personified look like bleached wash, dark wash, stone wash and many others. Manufacturers utilized the situation by coming up with innovative designs like new colours, embroidery and patch work. Denim washes are basically of two types, Mechanical Wash and Chemical Wash. While there are many different processes used to finish fabrics, the most common ones used on denim include singeing, scouring, bleaching, desizing, mercerizing, sanforizing, and bio-polishing, each designed to accomplish a specific goal. Besides giving these essential finishes there are some additional finishes which can be given to change the look of the fabric

Diifferent Washes And Finishes Of Denim

Stone Wash:There they throw a 20-yard roll of fabric and pumice stones together into a 250-pound washing machine. Let it rotate for a while. The longer the rotation, the lighter in color you got simple. The denim is then rinsed, softened, and tumble dried.

Enzyme Wash: The natural chemical is used for this wash, which is known as Enzyme wash

River Wash: Say this washing combines both enzyme and stone washing together in two-stage. The outcome is a dramatic vintage-effect you wouldn’t imagine.

Dark Wash Jeans:These Jeans are constant classic, whether you opt for a smart or casual look. Both Men and Women can enjoy wearing dark wash jeans with their favourite fashion. This kind of a wash can be worn by anyone.

Monkey Wash: Monkey Wash Denim Jeans. These jeans are especially crafted to be worn in parties and receptions due to their attention-grabbing designs and alluring patterns. Under the stern direction of our adroit designers, the jeans offered by us are delightfully designed and crafted using pristine quality denim fabric and sophisticated machines in tandem with set market standards.

Blast Wash: Blast Wash Jeans, These jeans are basically gives a spotty effect f the same colour of jeans, as itself the name depicts ‘blast’. These jeans have a spot of same colour.

Bleached: Various bleaches applied to denim leave it with a soft light blue colour. Sometimes workers apply the bleach unevenly during the process, to result in a light and dark blue mottled appearance on the finished fabric. Very heavy bleaching results in an almost white shade of denim.

Faded: Soft shades of faded blue denim result from ozone or water jet fading procedures. Workers dissolve ozone into water in a washing machine before adding the denim, or they subject it to ozone gases in a special fading chamber. With water jet fading, strong jets of water remove colour gradually until the fabric becomes the desired shade of blue.

Over Dyed: Over-dyed or tinted denim fabrics have usually been stone washed to remove some of the blue dye from the surface of the fibers. After the garment is sewn, workers apply another shade of dye, often by hand using sponges or paintbrushes. Most often, they apply colours in the brown or yellow range, but occasionally other colours are used. The garment goes through another washing process, resulting in subtle colour variations in the finished product.

Dirty Wash: After stone washing the denim, the manufacturer treats the material with special chemicals. These leave a brown or gray cast that only appears in the areas exposed to the chemicals. This results in a dirty appearance, as though the wearer had stained the garment in spots while gardening or otherwise working in the dirt.

Marble wash: Also known as acid wash. It’s a treatment where pumice stones are soaked in a bleaching agent and then added to the wash cycle along with the jeans. It creates a sharp colour contrast on the finished jeans.

Random wash: Small towels that have been soaked in a bleaching agent are put into the washing machine together with the jeans. This creates a random bleached look

Sponge effect :Bleach is applied to the jeans with a sponge. This creates a different look than bleach which is sprayed on.

Super stonewash: The regular stonewash is amplified by adding bigger stones for a longer time in the wash cycle. It creates a very light and worn look.

Tagging :Fabric is folded and afterwards fixed with swift tags. When the tags are removed, they leave a dark area inside the fold, replicating a natural fold which comes after wearing a pair of jeans for months.

 Atari:Japanese term describing the selective fading of the ridges of creases.The most common areas for “Atari” are along  side seams, on the front and back of the knees, the upper thigh, along the hem, on belt loops and along pocket seams.

 Sandblasting:A laundry process performed before washing in which jeans are shot with guns of sand in order to abrade them and cause a worn appearance. While originally done by hand this process is a now automated at most large laundry house.

Machine Sanding: in this fabric treatment process, a series of cylindrical rolls in horizontal  arrangement, either wrapped with an abrasive paper or chemically coated with an abrasive.

Hand Sanding:Use of sandpaper to abrade the surface, which gives a worn look. Variety of designs can be created.

Whiskering:A fading of the ridges increases in the crotch area and back of the knees, which gives the appearance of aged denim .It can also be inverse-dark creased in faded denim.

Cellulase Wash : This is done to achieve a wash down appearance without the use of stones or with reduced quantities of stones. Cellulase enzymes are selective only to the cellulose and will not degrade starch. Under certain conditions, their ability to react with cellulose (cotton) will result in surface fibre removal (weight loss).This will give the garments a washed appearance and soft hand.

Sun Washing: A very light shade by bleaching and stoning – Looks as if the sun faded the fabric.

Quick Wash Denim: Aims at minimizing wash cycle time . Results in more economical washes and solving many other washing problems faced by launders during fashion wash cycles . The yarns are ring dyed using indigo giving 25 to 30% less fixed dye to obtain a given shade . During wash cycle, indigo dye can be removed quickly, giving washed look.

Water Jet Fading:. Hydro jet treatment involves exposing one or both surfaces of the garment through hydro jet nozzles. The degree of colour washout, clarity of patterns, and softness of the resulting fabric are related to the type of dye in the fabric and the amount and manner of fluid impact energy applied to the fabric. As this process is not involved with any chemical, it is pollution free.

Laser Technology Wash: It is a computer controlled process for denim fading.  This technique enables patterns to be created such as lines and/or dots, images, text or even pictures. It is water free fading of denim. Being an automatic system, chances of human error are slim. – Also called spray painting in denims. This technique has relatively high cost.

Caustic Wash: Printing is done on the row & unclean fabric so that about 30% of the printing done on the surface may eventually fade away. Finally, printed garments are caustic washed. This leads to, about 30% of the printing washed away along with the foreign materials.

Ice or Snow Washing: This is a method achieved by dry tumbling with pumice stones soaked with bleaching agents. It produces a ‘snow-like’ pattern effect on denim.


Denim is unique in its singular connection with one colour. The warp yarn is traditionally dyed with the blue pigment obtained from indigo dye. Until the introduction of synthetic dyes, till  the end of the 19th century, indigo was the most significant natural dye known to mankind, linked with practical fabrics and work clothing. The durability of indigo as a colour and it’s darkness of tone made it a good choice, when frequent washing was not possible. Today our designers are set out to create an entirely new world of denim fabrics. Denim washing is the aesthetic finish given to the denim fabrics to enhance the appeal and to provide strength. Different chemicals are been used to give a different look. Each of these washes have their own limitations. Some creating a distressed look while another may create a rugged look but each one has acharm of its own.


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