What Setting Should You Dry Jeans On?

Separating colors, line drying versus tumble drying, dryer sheets or static — the act of laundry comes with so many questions. Take denim, for instance: What setting should you dry jeans on? Ask anyone, and you'll get a different answer; some say it's best to dry them on low to maintain their integrity, while others swear by drying them on hot. What's the real answer, though? What's best for your beloved jeans?

Well, as it would turn out, the best dryer setting for your jeans actually depends on what kind of jeans you have on your hands — you know, the color, the fit, the stretch, etc. For example, if you have brand new indigo skinnies or ultra-trendy black cigarette jeans, you're probably going to want to preserve the color and shape, which means you're going to want to wash them on cold, and tumble dry on low (or, if you're extra zealous, you could even hand wash and line dry them). Good Housekeeping also suggested turning them inside out before washing them — it's another great way to help keep the color intact. They also note that a color-preserving detergent can also work wonders, if you're so inclined.

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So drying on cold seems to be the go-to solution for keeping your denim looking fresh, but in what situation would you want to dry them on the hot setting? Well, sticking your pants in a hot dryer is actually a great way to shrink them — so it's a great solution for jeans that have gotten a little stretched out over the week. Pop 'em in the dryer, and they'll fit as good as they did when you first bought them! (Side note: if you're really looking to shrink them down, you can always try boiling them. The more you know, right?).

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So, there you have it. How you dry your jeans really comes down to preference — if it's an old pair that's really stretched out, go for the hot cycle. But if it's a brand new pair of indigo-washed designer jeans? Well, you might seriously consider treating them with the same care with which you'd treat your favorite denim jacket.

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... which is to say, a lot.