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Once you have found your perfect Joules jeans, never lose love for them, (or that rare-to-come by ‘just right’ feeling), by taking care of them from the moment you bring them home. From washing them less, to popping them in the freezer, this is everything you need to know about taking care of your denim.
If you live in your jeans, like we all do at Joules, it can be hard to avoid everyday dirt and those ‘just saying hello’ muddy pawprints. So, should you, or shouldn’t you wash your denim?
The longer you leave your denim, the more time it has to soften and mould to your body shape – it is actually possible to leave denim for around six months between washes.
We recommend washing after four or five wears, but we’re always thinking about the world around us, so make sure you read our other ways of washing denim that will keep them looking their best, and the planet happy too.
Jeans, peas and ice cream – two things you’ll find in your freezer, and one perhaps not… but believe it or not, freeze cleaning is an effective, and more environmentally friendly way of refreshing your denim between washes.
Unlike machine washing, freeze cleaning doesn’t remove dirt or stains, but it does kill the germs that build up after each wear and cause denim to smell.
When you’ve worn your denim for the advised amount of time – or when you walked through that muddy puddle that the children promised ‘wasn’t that deep’ – machine washing is the most effective way of removing dirt and stains. Before you throw them in the machine, willynilly, follow our tips for keeping that colour you love and your denim looking great.
When you just need to get a wash done, because everyone in the house needs something clean for yesterday, it is easy to over load the washing machine. But when it comes to denim, it’s important that you don’t do that as it can cause stubborn creases on the clothing and stop each item getting a thorough wash.
Only use a gentle washing detergent with no bleach, or one specially designed for dark colours, to help stop that beautiful colour fading.
TOP TIP: if you are washing multiple denim items in one load, include some older, more faded items in with your new ones as a way of re-distributing colour.
Take your denim washing into your own hands by using the handwashing method. It means getting a little more hands-on, but it’s worth it for keeping your items fresh as a daisy!
Once your denim is fresh and the stains gone, so begins the drying process. There are several ways in which you can dry your denim while keeping the colour of your jeans (and avoiding any shrinking mishaps).
Turn your denim the right way out and re-shape them while they’re still damp by ensuring the seams are straight, the cuffs are turned down and the pockets aren’t bunched up inside.
Line drying is the best way of drying denim quickly (well, quicker) and to keep the colour and fit looking like new. But we all know that the British weather might have other ideas. So, if rain has temporarily stopped play, hang your items somewhere near, but not on, a radiator.
When it rains it pours, so the lure of the tumble dryer will probably tempt you, but this can wreak havoc on your jeans at any stage of their life whether it be shrinking, wear and tear or damaging the spandex or elastane that gives the fabric its comfy stretch.
TOP TIP: dry your denim flat to reduce the need for ironing, so you can get back to wearing your favourite denim quicker.
Set your iron to a high heat such as is used for cotton, using steam and place a soft cotton pressing cloth between your iron and the denim – your care label will tell you otherwise if your item is not made from 100% cotton. We recommend ironing the pocket bags first and then laying one leg at a time flat on the ironing board so that your seams are side to side.
Our denim is built to last, but every denim has its day, so why not give it a new lease of life?
Get your sewing kit out and get creative by mending or altering your denim to extend their life – whether that’s keeping them as a jean or transforming them into a unique pair of shorts. If you don’t have that natural flair for sewing, there’s plenty of seamstresses and tailors who specialise in denim.
If the structure of your denim still fits you perfectly, but it’s just the colour that has seen better days, re-dye them at home. There are many colours available on the high street and online perfect for your DIY machine or hand dying project.
If your denim really can’t be worn any more, don’t just chuck them in the bin. Pop into one of our stores and be part of our Oxfam recycling scheme where we will recycle all of your old denim (and other fabrics too).