Wash My Shrink To Fit Levis? Are You Insane?

There’s a fine line between keeping your shrink to fit Levis unwashed and outright neglect. Here’s how to get your shrink to fit jeans as clean as possible while minimizing fading.

I often hear about people that have shrink to fit jeans and they talk about how they only wash their jeans once a year. That’s probably possible for some people. But it’s not practical for everybody. For example, I wear my favorite pair of shrink to fit Levis every single day. Occasionally I work outside in them. Not back breaking super dirty work, but I break a little bit of a sweat. With the way I wear my shrink to fit Levis, it’s impractical to wash them once a year, it would actually be downright gross.

When It It Time To Wash Your Shrink To Fit Levis?

Smell them. Do they smell? Of course they do, they probably smell like you. Nothing wrong with that. Definitely don’t wash them just because they have a smell. But do your precious shrink to fit Levis smell like funk? Do the faded parts of your Levis have a brown tint? That’s not necessarily awful either, but do they look dirty? Like homeless guy dirty? Maybe it’s time to wash your Levis.

My Method For Washing Shrink To Fit Levis Carefully

  1. Empty your pockets. I know this is a given, just don’t forget that part. Don’t put your phone in the water.
  2. Fill up your clothes washer with COLD water.
  3. Put 1/2 of a loads worth of detergent in the water.
  4. Turn your Levis inside out.
  5. Once the washer is filled up, stop the cycle (or put it on ‘soak’) and place your jeans in the water. Push them down to make sure they get under the water.
  6. Find something else to do for about 1 hour. (See photo on the right)

    A suggested way to pass the time while your Shrink To Fit Levis soak in the washer.

    A suggested way to pass the time while your Shrink To Fit Levis soak in the washer.

  7. Turn the washer back on and let it agitate the jeans, on the most gentle cycle, for a minute or two but no longer.
  8. Turn the knob to spin so the washer will drain. Let the spin cycle run through to get as much liquid off of your Levis as possible.
  9. Now, put the washer in the rinse cycle, let it fill up. Once it’s full, let it agitate your jeans for about a minute or two.
  10. Repeat step 8.
  11. Hang your shrink to fit Levis to dry. It will probably take overnight.


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