If there is no better feeling than finding a pair of perfectly fitting tall men’s jeans, then there is no worse feeling than shrinking those perfectly fitting jeans in the wash.
We’ve probably all had an incident or two when we weren’t thinking, and ended up shrinking one of our favorite pieces of clothing in the wash.
To avoid doing this to your jeans, make sure to avoid using heat (yes hot water DOES shrink jeans) in the washing machine or dryer (how hot does a dryer get). When using the washing machine to clean your jeans, make sure that you adjust the dial to both the delicate setting, as well as the cold water setting.
If you choose to use the dryer to dry your jeans, make sure that you use tumble dry low, and remove the jeans from the dryer while they are still slightly damp.
Table Of Contents
How To Wash Jeans Without Shrinking
Total Time: 2 hrs 30 min
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Avoid using heat when washing your jeans and you will have no problem with shrinkage. Clothes only shrink in the washing machine when they are washed with hot water, and jeans only shrink in the dryer when it is set to tumble dry high. Use cold water in the washing machine and use tumble dry low in the dryer; this will let you wash jeans without shrinking.
The BEST way to wash your jeans without shrinking them is to let the professionals handle it. Taking your jeans to your local dry cleaner can not only save your jeans but also save time and save money. Learn how long dry cleaners take and how much dry cleaners cost.
You may choose to wash your jeans either by machine or by hand. Follow the step-by-step instructions outlined below.
1. Turn the jeans inside out
Turn the jeans inside out and do up the zipper as well as the button.
2. Place your jeans inside washing machine
Place your jeans inside the washing machine. If your adding more clothes make sure they are the same colors.
3. Add liquid detergent
Add liquid laundry detergent.
4. Set to delicate and cold
Adjust the settings on the washing machine to delicate and cold water.
5. Run the wash
Run the wash cycle (how long does a washer take).
6. Remove once done
Once finished, remove your jeans from the washing machine. Leaving your jeans in the wash too long will leave them smelling musty and you will need to wash them again if so.
7. Dry the jeans properly
Dry the jeans properly by not putting them into a dryer. Hot air will shrink your jeans, which is not what we want. Instead let your jeans dry out from the natural air, either outside or in your house. You can line dry your jeans or hang them on a chair like I have.
*Continue reading below to find out how to dry jeans without shrinking.
How To Hand Wash Jeans Without Shrinking
Total Time: 2 hrs 30 min
- Buy Tide Liquid for $24.95
Follow the steps below to hand wash your jeans without shrinking them.
1. Fill basin with cool to lukewarm water for your jeans
Fill a basin with cool to lukewarm water and add one cap of liquid detergent, or two squirts. I am using my kitchen sink.
2. Turn jeans inside out and submerge in soap water
Undo the zipper and turn your jeans inside out then submerge your jeans in the water and let soak for 5 minutes.
3. After 5 minutes use your hands to squeeze the jeans
Once 5 minutes have passed, use your hands to agitate the jeans in the water. Squeeze the jeans, swish them around, beat them up for a while.
4. Rinse the jeans under clean tap water
Once finished, rinse your jeans under cool, clean water until all the soap has been removed and the water runs clear.
5. Get rid of excess water in the jeans
Wring your jeans or use a towel to remove any excess water from your jeans.
6. Air dry your jeans out of sunlight
Turn your jeans back and lay them over a drying rack for optimal air flow. If there is no drying rack you can hang them over a chair or any other thing that can allow them to hang with good air flow. Air drying your jeans is the cornerstone to them not shrinking.
How to dry jeans without shrinking
The best way to dry jeans without shrinking them is to avoid using the dryer and instead hang or lay your jeans flat to dry. Once your jeans have finished in the washing machine, turn them back inside out, and hang (line dry) or dry flat to dry.
If you would like to use the dryer to dry your jeans, be sure to use the air dry or tumble dry low settings. Air dry, tumble dry no heat, uses no heat at all, while tumble dry low only uses a very small amount of heat to dry clothes. If you are really keen not to shrink your jeans, remove them from the dryer when they are still slightly damp, and finish drying them by hanging. Make sure you know how long does a dryer take.
Drying your jeans on the tumble dry medium or tumble dry high settings will lead to shrinkage in your jeans, even if you only do it for a short period of time.
If you have a new pair of 100% denim jeans, washing them is one of the ways you can break in your jeans.
Take care of the rest of your clothes with the rest of our care guides to making sure no shrinkage happens.
Jeans washed in cold to lukewarm water will not shrink. Jeans are only susceptible to shrinkage if they are washed in hot water. Adjust your washing machine to the cold water setting before you begin washing your jeans in order to avoid shrinkage.
Jeans only shrink if they are washed in hot water, which means you can choose to shrink your jeans or not. Wash your jeans in hot water to shrink them, and washing them in cold water to not shrink them.
Your jeans keep shrinking in the wash before you are using the wrong settings and temperature levels while washing them. Make sure the settings on your washing machine are adjusted to cold water as well as delicate/gentle.