Hi Lola Life,
We’re here to address an issue that we just find plain annoying when it comes to new denim. Have you ever bought a pair of jeans that are a beautiful shade of dark blue and then next thing you know, it’s stain city all over your socks, the insides of your shoes and your legs?
We’ve all been there, we’ve all wished this wasn’t a thing.
I used to have a beautiful pair of dark blue Levis, but they stained everything. I didn’t know how to treat them and as a result only wore them three times before I outgrew them (Rest in Peace Levis, you were horribly annoying).
Fortunately, I’m here to help you and make sure what happened to me doesn’t happen to you. Here’s how to know what signs to look for and how to avoid your denim bleeding altogether.
Colorfastness is a term used in the textile industry to determine whether the colour in a material is resistant to colour fading and bleeding. If your clothing is colorfast, you have nothing to worry about. If they are not, make sure that you wash them separately or else you’ll have a colourful mess on your hands (Just picture the episode of “Friends” when all of Rachel’s whites turn pink because she left that red sock in there - Horrifying, I know).
Three important factors that affect whether or not an item of clothing, in this case denim, is colorfast are:
Whether or not the dye is synthetic or natural
The type of fibre it is applied to
When and how the dye was applied
Realistically speaking, these factors are out of your control. Though it is important to be more conscious when buying denim (so you don’t end up like me).
Test it out
If you want to test for colorfastness in store, all you need to do is take a piece of paper and rub it against the jeans. Sometimes it a good idea to also do this test around the inner seam at the bottom of the leg. If colour shows up on the paper, it’s crucial that you wash them at least once before wearing them. If not, you’re in the clear bb!
When it comes time to washing your denim what’s important to know is that you should probably use color catchers so that your other clothes don’t get stained.
But if you have that super stubborn pair of jeans that just won’t stop bleeding, try a vinegar soak. Yes, you (probably) heard it here first.
All you have to do is:
Fill a bucket with cold water and add one cup of vinegar.
Next, turn your jeans inside out and let them soak there for at least an hour. If you want to let them soak overnight, go for it. Just don’t keep them in there any longer than that.
After soaking them, you can place them in the dryer.
Either add a cup of vinegar or the recommended amount of detergent for dark clothing.
Wash them on the coldest water setting
Let them hang dry.
You always have to keep in mind that while your jeans might be susceptible to bleeding, this also means that they’ll fade faster. Make sure that you use the least amount of friction possible when washing them!
See my last post about how to properly take care of your denim for more tips and tricks!
By Amanda Barnard