By Syvannah Wilson
As jean makers, we are all about ensuring your jeans go the distance while maintaining a semblance of the pair you bought in our store.
Like your face, your jeans will naturally develop character with time, fading to a patina that says you’ve lived a little and whiskering in the places where you crouch, bend and sit routinely.
But there are some simple care basics that will help extend their lifespan so you get real value for your denim investment on a cost-per-wear basis while reducing your environmental impact.
Wash them less often. Tullia Jack says, “When you look at the whole life cycle of a piece of clothing, everyday washing and drying damages our natural environment the most.”* We suggest washing your jeans after ten wears rather than two.
Wash inside out with similar colours, particularly if you’ve opted for a darker wash. Use cold water to save energy and prevent shrinkage and fading.
Use an environmentally friendly detergent without bleach or other harsh chemicals. Try adding ½ a cup of white vinegar for fabric softness.
Line-dry instead of using a dryer to reduce electricity consumption and prolong the life of your jeans (a dryer might make the material softer but it also weakens the fibres). Plus, there’s something undoubtedly soothing about hanging your clothes on a Hill’s Hoist in the great outdoors. Rainy season? Hang your jeans indoors using a clip coat-hanger.
Befriend a great local tailor who can address any wear-and-tear issues you can’t live with, such as busted zips.
Growing to love the natural fade of a pair of jeans is like appreciating a fine, aged wine. But you can purchase at-home colouring kits, such as Rit, and bucket-dye your jeans if you wish to freshen up your jean colour (check the chemical list). We use organic dyes in our denim.
Negate the ironing to save more on electricity. Your jeans should be crinkle-free after an hour of wearing.
When you have truly finished with your jeans, consider recycling or donating them thereby reducing your environmental imprint.
*Notably, Jack recruited 30 participants to wear the same pair of jeans for at least five days a week for three months without washing them! The result: they weren’t visibly dirty and didn’t get smelly.
Outland Denim offers the opportunity to those who have finished with their Outland jeans, to post them back to us for repurposing.
Send them with a note to let us know you want them to be repurposed.
3/18 Main Street
Syvannah Wilson is currently studying a Bachelor of Environmental Management at the University of Queensland. Her interest in the field of environmental management lies within social sustainability and ethical conduct.