Jun
8
2014

Save your planet and denim – don’t wash it too often

Save your planet and denim - don't wash it too often

Save your planet and denim – don’t wash it too often

You should never wash your blue denims unless you absolutely have to ~ Chip Bergh

The beauty of design is that it follows a logical process, coupled with human reasoning. Quite often, to suggest a possible solution, we go back to the root of that problem. Chip Bergh, CEO of Levi’s did just that. He announced that the Levi’s he was wearing while speaking at Fortune’s Brainstorm Green conference a couple of weeks back, has never been washed. “I know that sounds totally disgusting, I know it does,” chuckled Bergh as he traced the process for the audience.

Everytime we invest in a comfortable pair of denims (looks and colors included), the last thing we need is for our beautiful possession to rot. By rot, we mean that damaged denim, minus the comfort, look or color we bought it for.

Apparently, every Denim Head has the same suggestion to offer: Do not wash your denim, unless you absolutely have to! No, they are not just attempting to save the planet or water by suggesting such a drastic change and challenge your personal hygiene.

The Process

Let’s trace back the root of this problem to understand the solution a little better. The journey of a denim initiates as a neutral, ecro material. Next it gets soaked in color, Indigo in most cases. At this stage, it’s either set at this very shade or washed to a lighter one as desired. We just figured that washing lightens the color. Additionally, it loosens the denim thread, making it loose the shape.

What about the smell?

Not washing the denim does have a very obvious downside – the smell! And there’s a solution for that too. It’s recommended that in such situations, the denim should be sealed in a plastic bag and put in the freezer overnight. Cold would be quite effective in killing the bacteria for any germophobes that cause such unpleasant smells. However, if you must wash, turn them inside out and try a cold cycle solo wash.

Don’t we all love the way a denim shapes around us to form the most comfortable trousers? And now we know, thanks to Bergh, to make them retain this shape for long. Moreover, it does save a lot of water and our planet too! Time to wink I guess! On that note, how many of you would be willing to not wash your denim to save the planet (or your denim’s quality)?

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About the Author:

Himanshu Khanna is the founder of Pixelonomics and a senior designer at Sparklin. If you’d like to connect with him, follow him on Twitter: @SparklinGuy

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