Jeans are a fashion staple in nearly everyone’s closet – – you can dress them up or down, lounge in them or work in them. There’s skinny, bootcut, boyfriend cut. There’s stonewashed, faded and a variety of colors. But the real question remains: how often should you actually wash them?
In an interview with Who What Wear, Mary Bruno, the former head of design of J. Brand’s, says you’re probably washing them too often. The ideal washing cycle is every four or five wears. As most jeans now stretch, washing isn’t necessary to have them shrink up again. Plus, most detergents have optical brighteners which will change the color of your jeans too quickly.
When you do wash them, wash them in cold water. That will help retain the dyes within the denim for a longer period of time.
What about new jeans? Are you required to follow the old rule of thumb and wash before wearing? Not necessarily. Most jeans have been washed as part of the fit process. According to Ms. Bruno, wearing jeans while rigid (“new”) is the best way to get them to form to your body.
Okay, if we’re not washing them after each use, how do we keep them . . . you know, fresh? Simple. As soon as you slink out of them, throw them on a hanger and let them air out. Don’t fold them up and toss them in a drawer or on a chair. Of course, if they are dirty from working outside or something has been spilled on them, that’s a different story.
So there you have it. Are you overwashing your jeans? Choosing the wrong water temperature? Save your denim, wash in cold and hang ’em up!