The Best Detergent For Denim To Keep Your Jeans Looking As Good As New

A new pair of jeans can make you feel amazing, but if you don't have the best detergent for denim chances are that your jeans aren't looking so hot after a couple of washes. And while it’s true that color fade is an inevitable part of washing your clothes, know that there are ways to prolong that brand new look and feel of denim.

For starters, washing your denim very infrequently is highly recommended. DSTLD Jeans Creative Director, Corey Epstein, says that fabrics like raw denim often fade fast, and washing them too often will only speed up the process.

“I don't recommend washing raw denim jeans for about four months [after you buy them],” he tells me over email. “The longer you allow for the natural dyes to set into the fibers, the better your fades and creases will look.”

But even when it comes to standard denim pairs, Epstein recommends washing with caution, as fade can happen equally the same. To care for your jeans properly, always wash them inside out, with color-preserving detergents.

“Always wash your jeans inside out, on a gentle cycle,” says Epstein. "In addition, also opt for a color-preserving formula to enhance your fabric.”

For longer lasting denim, here are five detergents that will work wonders on your favorite jeans.

1. Stain Removing Liquid Detergent

Persil Pro Clean Power-Liquid 2in1, $20, Amazon

Suitable for washing all kinds of denim, this effective detergent removes heavy stains (ketchup that dripped from your burger to your lap, for example) while boosting color.

2. Dark & Denim Color Protector


Clorox 2 Darks & Denim Color Protector & Stain Remover, $6-$10, Clorox

Safe on even the darkest of denim washes, this color protector and stain remover keeps dark clothes looking new, wash after wash.

3. Fragrance Free Detergent 

Seventh Generation Natural Laundry Detergent, $26, Amazon

Free of dyes, optical brighteners and synthetic fragrances, this detergent works great on protecting the overall life of your denim.

4. Cold Water Detergent

Tide Coldwater Clean Liquid Detergent, $19, Amazon

Providing a deep clean even in colder water temperatures, this detergent helps capture the chlorine in wash water, which can fade the finish on jeans. 

5. Fabric Softener


Downy Fabric Conditioner, $11, Amazon

Helping jeans look and feel brand new, this fabric softener protects denim fibers, while providing a soft broken-in feel.

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Images: Redd Angelo/Unsplash; Courtesy Brands 

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