How to soften new jeans

Updated March 23, 2017

Nothing can be more uncomfortable to wear than a pair of stiff and rough new jeans -- that universally acclaimed 'king' of casual clothing. Most jeans are usually like this when new because denim, the material that jeans are spun from, is a thick and heavy fabric. If you wish to soften that new pair of jeans, here's a simple way to do it.

Remove all price tags, instruction cards and other items attached to the jeans. Turn your new jeans inside out. Set your washer and dryer settings to 'regular' mode. Add a little fabric softener and wash the jeans with cold water.

Throw in the sneakers as the next step. Put several pairs of clean (preferably all-white) trainers into the dryer along with your jeans. The shoes will beat against the denim fabric and help to soften the jeans by loosening the starch. However, make sure that the trainers have been cleaned thoroughly before they are put into the dryer.

Roll the jeans for best results. On completion of washing and drying cycles, roll up the jeans tightly to get the smallest roll possible. Then unroll them while pulling on the denim as you go. This will stretch your jeans and make them more comfortable to wear.

Turn the jeans inside out. Then use one blade of a pair of scissors or a knife to gently scrape along the knee and thigh areas of the fabric. Make sure that scraping is done by moving the blade horizontally across the denim fabric so that you do not cut your jeans. Dispose off the cotton lint (fine fiber) that you will see along the edge of the scissor blade or knife.

Hot wash the jeans next. When the jeans have completely dried, put them back into the washer along with several pairs of sneakers or other jeans and wash with a hot water cycle. In this manner the denim fabric will be made even softer. Again, ensure that the sneakers are cleaned thoroughly before they are put into the washer. If you use other jeans instead, make sure they are also clean and do not bleed.

Wear the jeans. The fabric will be much softer, and the jeans will fit perfectly after wearing them only a few times.


Use liquid instead of a powder detergent as the latter does not dissolve completely in cold water and is likely to leave a white residue on the denim fabric.


Do not overload the washer or dryer for the sake of softening!

Things You'll Need

  • Washing machine
  • Quality detergent
  • Fabric softener
  • Clothes dryer
  • Clean trainers (preferably white)
  • Scissors
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