When you have finally scored your dream pair of vintage jeans or those on-trend denim dungarees or maybe a lovely denim button-down skirt, the least you want is to see them look not the way you took them off the racks. While your vintage T-shirts are not at much risk to get damaged while washing, thus preventing you from panic attacks, whether to wash your vintage denim items or not is really a sixty-four-thousand-dollar question.
While many might stick to Levi Strauss & Co. CEO Chip Bergh’s suggestion to stop washing your jeans keeping sustainability top of mind, the other half of the denim-heads are more on the side of cleanness and tidiness.
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But we are mostly intrigued by Jane Bishop’s based-on-natural–evolution approach to this question: “You don’t want to ruin them or ever do something to them that will make them unwearable, of course. But if they change, I mean, isn’t that life? I mean, nothing ever stays the same forever. Denim is life!”
No matter where you stand in this torrent of denim-wash opinions, you are just obliged to know every nuts and bolts of how to take care of your vintage denim. Below we have outlined some valuable tips for the better future of your vintage denim.
Hold off Washing Your Vintage Jeans As Long As Possible
Since you are dealing with vintage denim, that is to say, with an item already worn-out and broken-in, thereby more out on a limb, you are about to double down on its caring regime. Besides, you have opted for that very vintage pair because of its fading type and distress level, so you don’t want it to lose all those aspects you have been captivated by while shopping, to say the least.
So, try to keep them clean as long as possible so as to avoid that rub and friction that may jeopardize your vintage jeans.
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Consider Spot Cleaning
How to act if you have spilt a bit of mustard or ketchup on your jeans? Tossing them in a washing machine only for a spot will actually be unreasonable from your side. There is a perfect option in here; consider spot cleaning!
Just arm yourself with a damp cloth and a mild soap or detergent and start working the stain inside out to dab it off. You can also make use of a toothbrush instead of a damp cloth as an easier alternative. This trick can be equally as effective on other denim items.
When to Wash Your Vintage Denim?
When it comes to raw denim jeans with no wash and fading, all denim experts unanimously assert that it takes up to 6 month for a pair to break in, which means you should linger on the washing regime.
But what about the washing frequency of your vintage denim that has its own fade and wash already imprinted? The ideal washing frequency rate here is every 10-15 wearings, unless you haven’t participated in a mud wrestling in your newly acquired jeans.
How to Wash Your Vintage Denim?
First things first, never take your vintage denim to a laundry, as you never know what chemicals will be used and what damage they may cause to your vintage treasure. Instead, jump on taking care of your jeans by yourself.
It’s highly advisable to prefer the hand-washing option to machine washing for safer and longer lifecycle of your denim. First off, flip your jeans inside out (flipping-out will prevent it from extra fading, while also ensuring more thorough cleanup), soak them in a bathtub full of cold water with a small portion of mild detergent and keep them in for about 30 minutes.
Rinse them 3 times, using a 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar for the final rinsing process. Vinegar is able to preserve that much-cherished fade of your jeans and also to disperse unpleasant odour caused by detergent. After rinsing, never risk wringing your jeans to sidestep damage, but instead press them gently to let off the water.
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However, if you are short of time or have just done your nails, go ahead with machine washing thus keeping a couple of tips in mind:
• Wash with a cold cycle, which is a surefire way to maintain the wash type of your jeans the way you have acquired them.
• Use the gentlest and shortest cycle while machine-washing your vintage jeans, unless you want them to go all the more faded and distressed.
• Wash them alone, especially if your vintage denim is in a light blue wash, otherwise a darker item might bleed and change the wash of your denim.
How to Dry Your Vintage Denim?
Drying your vintage denim also needs some professional instructions if you want to keep them in your desired shape and wash. While the electric dryer might feel and sound a wonder device of the 19th century, pass it over when it comes to denim care. The dryer can be of service only when you are after to shrink your stretched out jeans.
But if the agenda is to maintain its initial look and feel, air-drying is the best option when you have a veranda. Alternatively, you can lay flat your vintage denim on a towel to let it dry by itself.
How to Freshen Your Vintage Jeans?
At times your denim starts looking a little bit exhausted and unenergetic, but without any exposed dirt on it or it might sometimes smell not so pleasant. So what to do to freshen up your favorite vintage denim?
Be it a pair of jeans, a lovely denim jacket or a denim skirt, freezing your vintage denim in a plastic bag for 2 days may do wonders. You can also try steamer to get rid of any undesirable odour.
How to Store Your Vintage Denim?
Whether you are used to hanging your denim collection or stack them folded on each other, try keeping some space for them to breathe since, well, denim is life, after all!
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