How to Stone Wash Denim

There is a more practical option to spending a lot of money on the near perfect pair of faded denim. Stone washed or acid washed denim is a process that was developed by washing the fabric in large industrial washing machines with small pumice pebbles to give it that worn-in look. You can tailor the degree of stone washing to the areas you wish to treat if you do it yourself. To achieve this retro faded denim look, you will need a few household items and at least two days.

Place the denim in a bucket filled with cold water. The denim must be entirely submerged. Let it soak for two days.

Apply moderate to rough pressure to rub the denim with a pumice stone in the areas that you wish to look stone washed. Denim is a fabric that won't tear quickly so don't be afraid to use a heavier hand.

Remove the denim from the bucket after two days and let it air dry in a place where it can get ample sunlight. Let it dry completely.

Wash the denim on the cold cycle in your washing machine.


Use salt rathern than bleach to achieve a stonewashed look. This will enable you to avoid inhaling the chemicals in bleach. You can stonewash stitched or unstitched denim.


Do not wear the denim until you wash the salt out of it.

Things You'll Need

  • Pumice stone
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About the Author

Eemaan Ahmad has been writing wellness articles since 2008. Her articles have appeared on eHow. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communication from The American University.