How To Wash Jeans - Your Complete Guide


Figuring out how to wash jeans can be a tricky task. We’re here with the complete guide so you can wear your favorite pair for years to come.

There’s nothing quite like a great pair of jeans. The perfect pair can be stylish, comfortable, and go well with almost anything. Finding your favorite pair of jeans can be quite a task—so when you’ve found your perfect pair, you want to make sure to treat them right. But how should you wash your jeans? How often should you wash your jeans? And is there a way to clean jeans without washing them? Don’t worry—we’re here to help make sure you and your favorite pair of jeans have many happy years together!

How Often To Wash Jeans

It may seem wrong to put off washing your clothes, but in the case of denim, procrastination is actually a pro tip. Durable fabrics like denim don’t need to be washed after every wear—in fact, the less often you wash them, the longer they will look brand new. Frequent washes can lead to color fading and breaking down elasticity (ever wonder why your jeans suddenly have a saggy butt?).

While some stylists recommend washing your jeans after 5 wears, others recommend washing them just once every 12 wears, or 6 weeks. Your mileage may vary, but if your jeans are visibly dirty or smelly, it is probably time for a wash!

Read our complete guide on how often to wash your jeans.

How to Wash Jeans by Hand or Machine

Hand washing can be a gentle alternative to tossing your jeans in the machine. Not sure how to hand wash jeans? It’s simple! Fill a large sink, bucket, or bathtub with cold water. Add your favorite laundry detergent pod or a few pumps of our Ultra Concentrated Laundry Detergent, and let your jeans soak for 15-30 minutes. We recommend turning your jeans inside out. This helps protect the color of your denim, and makes sure the inside of your pants—which come in contact with your skin—are squeaky clean! When your pants are done soaking, drain the soapy water and rinse with clean, cold water. Dryers can be tough on clothes, so we recommend air drying your denim, either by hanging them right side-out or laying them flat. If you do choose to wash your jeans in the washing machine, be sure to choose a gentle setting and cold water. Learning how to wash jeans carefully is the best way to make sure they remain in tip top shape!

How to Clean Jeans Without Washing

If your jeans could use a bit of freshening but aren’t quite ready for a wash, try these laundry pro tips! Your jeans will seem right out of the wash—and we won’t tell if you don’t :)

Stick them in the freezer

Freezing your jeans is an easy and effective way to deodorize your denim between washing. Simply put them in the freezer before bed, and wake up to fresh, odor-free pants. (This is also great for a hot day!)

Let Them Breathe

Odor-causing bacteria sometimes results in jeans smelling dirtier than they actually are. Hang your jeans in a window or near a fan to freshen them. You may also want to consider hanging your jeans in your closet, rather than folded or rolled up in a drawer.

Spot Clean

If you spill something on your jeans, try spot cleaning before tossing them in the wash. Our Ultra Concentrated Laundry Detergent is perfect for spot cleaning any messes. Check out our Stain & Fabric Care guides for handy tips on most common stains!

Give Them a Spritz

If you’re missing that just-washed scent, try spraying your jeans with our Revitalizing Mist! This fabric refresher helps cleanse odors and extends the life of your clothes between washes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Got a specific question about how to wash jeans? Odds are we have an answer for you.

How can I wash my jeans without ruining them?

The first thing you should do before washing your jeans is consult the care label. If you choose to wash your jeans in the washing machine, we recommend choosing a gentle or delicate cycle. Denim may be a tough fabric, but a gentle wash is the best way to keep them in tip top shape!

Should jeans be washed inside out?

The best way to wash jeans is inside out. Washing your jeans inside out helps protect and preserve the color and prevents fading. This also makes sure the insides of your pants, which come in contact with your bare legs, are as clean as can be!

Do you wash jeans on hot or cold?

While you should always consult the care label on your jeans, we recommend using cold water to prevent shrinking or fading.

How often should you wash jeans?

This is an often debated topic, and various experts and stylists have different opinions! The bottom line is that while you don’t need to wash your jeans after every wear, you will want to wash them whenever they are visibly dirty or smelly.