Quite possibly the worst feeling ever is sliding on your favorite pair of jeans and finding that not only do your legs barely fit into their holes but buttoning your jeans is a struggle. At that point, you realize your jeans must have gone through the wash, and now they’ve shrunk. Prevent these devastating moments by using this ultimate guide to denim care and learn how to care for jeans.

How to Care for Jeans

Caring for your jeans takes a little more effort than most clothing. While some garments can withstand hot temperatures and being thrown in your home washer, you need to take a little more care when washing your jeans. If you do not opt to dry clean your jeans at your local ZIPS, follow these tried-and-true denim care tips.

Focus on Spot Cleaning

If you decide to forgo throwing your denim in the washer and dryer, you should at least focus on spot cleaning any dirt or stains. For instance, you can simply wipe away dirt by using a toothbrush to scrub with soap and water. Alternatively, you can remove grease and oil stains by soaking up the excess oil with a paper towel and blot the stain with soapy water.

Use the Correct Detergent to Preserve Color

If you use cheap detergents or soaps to wash your clothing, the blue tint of your jeans can start to fade over time. Instead, make sure you invest in quality detergent that is meant to help preserve the color of your jeans and clothing items. Many of the leading detergent brands even use a pump or a cup to measure out the detergent so you don’t use too much.

Wash with Cold Water

Washing jeans with cold water is likely the most critical denim care step of all. Not only does cold water save energy, but it also protects your jeans from color fading and shrinking since it doesn’t break down the denim fibers.

Air Dry Your Jeans

Something that very few people know about washing clothes is that the shrinkage actually comes from the heat of your clothes breaking down in the dryer. In fact, the heat from your dryer can damage your jeans, so air drying your jeans is the best way to preserve them. To preserve your jean’s shape and avoid wrinkles, make sure you hang them to dry instead of draping them over a chair.

Does Washing Denim Ruin it?

Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to wash your jeans every time you wear them. In fact, you can prolong the life of your jeans by only washing them when they are visibly dirty or carrying a stench. This is because washing your jeans too frequently can make the dye fade. To keep your denim in the best shape possible and prolong the life of your garments, send them to the dry cleaners.

How Often Should You Wash Denim?

Although it will likely depend on your lifestyle, you should expect to wash your jeans once every 3 to 10 wears. If you are harder on your jeans and use them for manual labor or at any job that makes you work up a sweat, you should wash your jeans more frequently. On the other hand, if you only wear your jeans for a few hours out of the day or work at a desk, you can go longer in between washes.

What is the Difference Between Washed and Pre-Washed Denim?

Did you know that there is a difference between raw and pre-washed denim? Well, when it comes to washing your jeans, you should check if your denim is raw or if it has been pre-washed before purchase. Pre-washed denim has been washed before you purchase it, whereas raw denim is generally darker in color and takes longer to break in because it has not been treated beforehand.

While you shouldn’t wash any of your denim in hot water, pre-washed denim may have more predictability than raw denim. Still, you want to avoid washing pre-washed denim too often, otherwise, you could risk damaging your jeans or color fading. As for raw denim, you can expect the material to shrink after washing, so you should wash this type of denim in cold water and let it air-dry. Also, expect fading over time and only wash with dark colors in case of dye transfer.

Denim Care at ZIPS Cleaners

Whether you need your mom jeans, skinny jeans, overalls, or jorts dry cleaned, stop by any of your local ZIPS locations today. ZIPS Cleaners offers convenient, timely, and affordable dry cleaning for any budget. Not only can you get any garment–yes ANY garment–dry cleaned for half of what other places charge, but ZIPS is committed to reducing their economic impact by recycling hangers, using 100% recyclable plastics, and working to reduce waste and water usage.