How often do you wash your jeans?

How often do you wash your jeans?

How often do you wash your jeans, Fashion Police?

If it’s more often than once every three months, then prepare for a shock, because a team of brave volunteers in Australia have undertaken a study to prove what The Fashion Police have known for quite some time: that jeans don’t really need to be washed all that often.

The project, led by Tullia Jack, as part of her masters thesis, saw 30 men and women wear the same pair of jeans five days per week, for three months, without washing them. And how did the jeans smell by the end? “Not that bad,” apparently. Jack’s groundbreaking conclusion: “You really don’t need to wash clothes as often as you think. Stains come and go, they just wear off.”

To us, this seems kind of like those expensive studies we’re always reading about in the press, which tell us things like “if you’re thirsty, water will help” or “if you eat too much food, you might get fat”. Indeed, we discussed the issue of clothes washing last year, and most of you seemed to be in agreement that, for most clothes, excessive washing is just bad for them: it fades the colours, changes the shape, wears out the fabric… and while a well-worn pair of jeans can look even better than a brand spanking new pair, this is particularly true of denim, which we tend to wash only when it needs it (or when we want the jeans in question to fit a little tighter).

Obviously this isn’t the case with all garments and some most definitely need to be washed after every wear, but where do you stand on jeans? Are you flabbergasted by the news that they don’t need to be washed constantly, or did you know it all along?

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20 Comments

  • January 5, 2012

    Ksawery via Facebook

    Only when I have to.

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  • January 5, 2012

    KON

    Since I have a dog I need to wash my jeans more often than would like to. Only knowing, that he drooled all over it or just put his muddy paws on makes me wash them.
    For the rest of my wadrobe I’d like to thank all the smokers >.> (can’t stand the smell – need to wash everything).

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    • January 5, 2012

      Cookie

      I own a Basset hound, so yes, mine need to be washed fairly often too. I can get away with two or three wears before I wash them (if I clean them with a damp sponge inbetween), but even aside from that, I think they should be washed on a regular basis. I mean, you walk around in them, and sit down in the bus, and sweat in them, even if it is just a bit…

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  • January 5, 2012

    Kathryn

    My jeans usually get washed after 2 or 3 wears. I find that they start to stink if I wait any longer!

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  • January 5, 2012

    Rebecca

    I keep several pairs clean at a time, so that I can wear them in rotation for about three weeks.

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  • January 5, 2012

    Minka

    I also have several pairs and wear them in rotation. But sometimes I have that one absolutely awesome pair that I want to wear all the time… Generally I just stick to washing clothes when they are visibly dirty or stinky, because I really don’t see any point in doing otherwise.

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  • January 5, 2012

    Lili @ Relatable Style

    I wash them when they get dirty, stained, they smell or they just feel icky for some reason. One of those reasons suffices.

    I do wash them more frequently in the beginning (it’s more like I wash them *more* then usual when I first buy them, not wash them *less* when they are older) to get a good part of the dye and chemicals out. Pesticides last as much as 10 cycles, and I don’t want my skin to get all of that.

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  • January 5, 2012

    Emily

    Barely ever… Then again, I barely ever wear my jeans. I do need to start washing my tights more often though.

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  • January 5, 2012

    Jaynie

    Mine usually last for a good week until I’ve trekked through too much mud and too many puddles to really look presentable in them. If I was less inclined to fall over and generally make a mess of myself, I’d probably keep them on longer, but being knee-high in caked on mud is…not a good look.

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  • January 5, 2012

    naiadknight

    Anywhere from after one wear (a good romp and training session with my collie pointer mix) to upwards of a week of wearing them. This is dependent, of course, on whether or not I manage to get something on them. The average is about 5-6 wears.

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  • January 6, 2012

    Tricia

    I have one pair that can go forever, the butt and waistband doesn’t stretch too much. I have another pair that needs some water just to get them back in shape, every wearing. It’s the stretch in jeans that makes them need washing, not the dirt, for me. Some fabric creation engineer should be making millions on the perfect denim fabric, I don’t know why this is still a problem, some designers get it just right.

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  • January 6, 2012

    Moni

    To be completely honest I do own one pair of jeans that I’m not sure I have washed at all so far… I bought it last August and haven’t worn it all that often. The others are due on a “if needed” basis. They don’t get washed unless there are visible stains (mostly at the hems) or it has been particularly hot.

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  • January 7, 2012

    Kadri

    I did not know that! But I do wash them only when they stink. I’m not going to tell you how soon they start to stink! I don’t wear the same t-shirt more then once though.

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  • January 7, 2012

    Delphine

    Well I wash them when they are not skinny enough anymore (like this particular spot around the knees?).. I would say it’s usually after 2 or 3 wear.

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  • January 8, 2012

    Lauren

    Maybe it’s because I wear cheap jeans, but most of mine get way too stretched out to be wearable after one or two wears. They bag at the knees and gradually fall down during the day (which is the most annoying part).

    Actually, I have 12 pairs of jeans just because I’ve been trying to find the perfect pair, and they all do this, regardless of brand, size, etc.

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  • January 8, 2012

    nata19

    Just another super USELESS research, common sense, something one knows all along like putting some fresh fruit on top of the ice-cream to make it a healthier choice 🙂 Please, give us something more valuable than that !!!

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  • January 8, 2012

    Irene

    Masters thesis??
    You are kidding right???
    who would ever waste a Masters on jeans-washing issues????

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  • January 10, 2012

    Zoe

    When they are stained/smell.

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  • January 9, 2013

    Stephanie

    Jeez, I wash them after every wear. I start getting really itchy if I don’t wash them constantly. Plus, how do you not wash them not that often? Not that I am dwelling into anything smelly, but jeans do start to smell. Every time you let out gas, or go to the bathroom your jeans pick up an odor. `Trust me, I would not like to start smelling like butt or something.

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