How to Shrink Your Jeans Waist: The Best Way

In this blog post, I am going to be giving you the best way to shrink your jeans waist.

There are several methods for this and I will be covering them all. Some of these methods will help you shrink your jeans waist a little, some will help you shrink your jeans waist drastically and some might even keep you from shrinking your jeans at all!

So here we go:

Don’t Wash Your Jeans

I know this is probably the last thing on any guy’s mind when it comes to clothing care but hear me out. This tip isn’t as crazy as it sounds and if you try it, I promise that your jeans won’t look like they came out of Charlie Sheen’s closet or anything.

The less time your denim spends with water touching its fibers, the less chance there is for long-term damage.  So don’t wash your jeans simply because if you do, they will not fit the same once done.

Denim Shrink-to-Fit vs. Permanent Press  

“Shrink to Fit” are pretty much the same thing when it comes to fabric care but there is a slight difference between them that we want to cover. Permanent press or “Permanent Press” seem like synonyms and while I guess they might be in some cases, they really aren’t here.

According to Wikipedia: “Shrink-to-fit (or shrink–to–fit) describes garments which shrink after washing or drying in order to conform closely and comfortably to the contours of the wearer’s body.”  

On the other hand, permanent press is the result of a chemical process that produces “a permanent press effect (e.g., wrinkle-free, smooth fabric) in the cloth.” So what does this mean for us?

Well it means that you can actually buy denim that has been treated with different finishes resulting in one lasting longer than the other.

Permanently Press Denim

Permanently pressed or “permanent press” denim won’t shrink at all compared to shrink-to-fit which will over time. If you want to avoid having your jeans waist shrink on you, then go for the more expensive version of denim and get yourself some permanantly press before they are ruined by shrinking.

Freeze Them

Instead of throwing them in a bucket of water, throw them in the freezer instead. Make sure the frozen jeans are completely dry when you freeze them though so plan ahead and let them dry out for a day.

Once they are done drying, put your jeans in an airtight plastic bag (you don’t want to get frost damage on anything else) or if you like, place then in an old pillowcase that’s solid white.

The reason behind this is because I believe that liquid water causes fabric fibers to contract more than ice during freezing which causes less overall shrinkage. Also, putting your denim in plastic keeps it from drying out which will also reduce the amount of shrinkage it experiences while freezing too.

They make these bags specifically for clothes but I usually just buy one at Walmart for like $5 and it usually does the trick for me.    

Microwave Them

Microwave your jeans by themselves (do not put anything else in with them) on high heat for about 2 minutes. Once they are done, let them sit untouched until they have completely cooled down to room temperature.

If you want, you can throw them in the freezer like before but this time three days instead of one day (I know that seems like a lot). Just remember that either way, you will only be shrinking the waistband area so if there is other parts that need shrunken down too then be sure to monitor those areas accordingly. 

The reason why I say three days instead of just one even though both accomplish the same thing is because I am more comfortable with waiting longer to be safe.

Some people say that using the microwave is less risky than using the freezer, some say it actually has a negative effect and if you believe them, then don’t listen to me about freezing your jeans for three days.

However since this tip will work even with one day of freezing (it’s just better to wait longer), I would say go ahead and freeze them instead but only put them in for three minutes and it should still do the trick! 

Material matters

The type of material matters too as cotton is known to shrink more than some other types of materials such as leather or wool.

If you have an expensive pair of leather Jeans on under which you store Denim inside the bathroom, then remember that leather will shrink much less than your denim will so if you want to decrease the amount of shrinkage that your jeans experience, put them inside a bag made from a material that shrinks less.

The same thing goes with Wool but in my opinion, wool does not hold shape as well as either Leather or denim so I would definitely avoid this combination unless you want skinny wool pants! Wash Less Often

If your Jeans are already shrinking over time and you still have a lot of life left in them (they look new minus the fading), then I would recommend washing them less often which should help reduce the amount of overall shrinking they experience.

Just remember to hang dry instead of drying them on low heat or something like that. If you do not have any wrinkles at all, then I would recommend hanging them up right after the wash cycle is done.

Wrinkles are fine as long as they are light ones but if there are darker ones it’s time to start taking care of them because those dark wrinkled areas will eventually cause your jeans to look like shorts!

If all else fails, go to a tailor

If none of the above tips work for you, then it might be time to take these babies down to your local tailoring shop. There is usually no need though so be sure that this is really necessary before throwing in the towel.

Thanks For Reading!

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